Presumably, the Greek gods could have chosen to live in any wine region, yet they picked Rapsani high up Mount Olympus. Is that worth more than 100 points from Robert Parker? This is a wild frontier in Greek winemaking. As well as an unbeatable address on Zeus's doorstep, it has 800m of elevation, vineyards up to a century old, and the best red grape variety in Greece (Xinomavro). Yet it is only just coming to the attention of the outside world.It's no surprise to find the tireless Apostolos Thymiopoulos up here. His wines from further north (Naoussa), were groundbreaking, and this Rapsani is another another classic in the making. Full-bodied, slightly smoky, with ripe red fruit, it's softer and more rounded than his other reds, but has just as much depth. A blend of 50% Xinomavro, 35% Krassato and 15% Stavroto.
Deep garnet. Complex and inviting aroma that has so many layers: herbal red fruits, leafiness, sweet tobacco, even floral notes. A great combination of freshness, firm tannin texture and fruit that still has energy, even though it's ripe. Juicy, even though the tannins are firm and dry – really marked by the Xinomavro. Delicious now but a wine with a future, where the fruit and the origin, not the winemaking, shine.
17 pointsJulia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com, 12/02/2023