Sure, there are hundreds if not thousands of wine grapes out there, and they’re all unique in a way. Some, though, are truly extraordinary. November 1st is Xinomavro Day, and it’s an authentic celebration of one of the most robust and sophisticated red grapes in the Greek repertoire.
The word Xinomavro comes from the Greek Xino (sour) and Mavro (black). Still, the peculiar grape, widely planted in Northern Greece, is much more than sour and dark-skinned — it’s the source of some of the most age-worthy, contemplative wines, not only in Greece but Europe.
At Cinque Wine Bars, your go-to source for premium Greek wine and great food in Athens, we’re big fans of Xinomavro. Experts often compare the robust grape to the noble Italian Nebbiolo for its high tannins, tight acidic backbone and layered bouquet, but Xinomavro is in a category of its own.
Xinomavro is native to Macedonia; it’s the star in the prestigious appellations PDO Naoussa, PDO Amynteo, and plays a leading role in the lighter PDO Goumenissa and PDO Rapsani. The grape produces inky wines with ripe red fruit on the nose, followed by refined scents of prunes, tobacco leaves and dried flowers. It comes without saying, Xinomavro reflects its terroir marvelously, so no two bottles are alike.
Falling in love with Xinomavro is easy; you just need to take a first sip. With an affinity to charcuterie and cheese, grilled red meat, roasted poultry and anything kissed by smoke and fire, Xinomavro always has a place on the table. This November 1st let’s celebrate this remarkable wine grape in good company. Cinque Wine Bars will always be home to the finest Greek wines and welcomes everyone who wants to know their secrets with open arms and a wineglass in hand.