T-OINOS at SommelierS International
Sofia Lafaye, visited T-OINOS and shares her experience and impressions with SommelierS’ International readers at the latest issue of Autumn 2019:
“In the heart of the Cyclades, an unusual estate, T-Oinos, celebrates the spirit of Greek wines, in radical connection with an exceptional terroir. In the shelter of Tinos, this island known for its Christian pilgrimages, viticulture has instilled its possibilities since the Bronze Age. Numismatics of the 6th century BC.J-C. has transcribed its economic impact bearing the image of a bunch of grapes. In the 18th century, the island offered a range of about twenty wines … The place blessed by the pagan and Christian gods almost forgot for a moment the pleasures of wine until 1999, when Alexandre Avatangelos chose it. From the first plantations in 2002 until the first vinification in 2008, the future of the estate has emerged from these stony soils. Today, the esthete investor perseveres, transfiguring the physical limits of the terroir and the grape varieties in order to magnify them. He creates daring partnerships through the intrepidity of his adventure.
Gérard Margeon, sommellerie director of Alain Ducasse, co-founder of T-Oinos, and Stéphane Derenoncourt, consultant, arrived in 2010 and 2016. The perception of the terroir, the work of soils, the optimization of the grape varieties is done in cooperation. The team consist of 5 inevitable players having bet on the potential of this area. At their side, Michalis Tzanoulinos, the vineyard manager, and Thanos Georgilas, oenologist, participate in the epic. Some 13 hectares divided into 3 separate plot-selected areas compose the estate. The first, at an altitude of 460 m, lies on a granite basement covered by sands. Granite blocks emerge, almost erected by Eole himself as the winds are here extremely powerful. The Assyrtiko fights a fierce life and delivers in the Clos Stegasta a fine, subtle minerality. The transfigured vine rises to an unusual profile, captivating by its purity. Light citrus, salinity, yellow fruits and sometimes fennel aromas intrigue. The second, Razonas, encapsulates shale soils perfect for the Clos Stegasta Mavrotragano. With fine tannins, the wine displays varies aromas ranging between light menthol, licorice and thyme. The third, Agios Dimitrios, from about thirty terraces with an elevation of 100 m generates other types of Mavrotragano. Vinification and elevage complete the notion of research and technique. No destemming, wooden vats, 500-liter barrels and amphoras move past certainties and deliver the best. In the end, enjoying the result, the adventure becomes almost Homeric.”