3 Greek white wine varieties that are perfect for beaches, picnics and anywhere you might arrive on a bicycle or in a canoe. These light-bodied white wines each offer their own individual character.
Beyond the usual suspects of Pinot Grigio and Sauvignon Blanc there is a world of delicious light-bodied white wines to be discovered. Of course, most of these varieties are relatively unknown and only grow within their country of origin. Greece has a treasure trove of new indigenous grape varieties and some of the best light-bodied white wines. Here are 3 white wines from Greece that will make your sunny days brighter.
3 Great Greek White Wines
- Perfect for: picnics and rooftop drinking
- Pairs with: sunshine, freshly mowed lawns, tabouli salad, high quality feta, lemon-garlic shrimp
- Taste Profile: lime, citrus zest, beeswax, grapefruit, high acidity
- About Assyrtiko: This awesome Greek grape originates from the island of Santorini but, due to its popularity, the variety grows throughout the rest of Greece where it’s known to deliver richer, plumper fruit flavors. The most coveted Assyrtiko wines can be found overlooking the sea on volcanic soils which add a salty crystalline acidity to the flavor profile. While most Assyrtiko wines are unoaked (read: light and bright), you can find a few reserve bottles that have oak-kissed toasty notes of golden apple, peach and bay leaf flavors.
- Perfect for: patios, classy outdoor affairs
- Pairs with: chicken salad, cold soup, barbecue grilled mahi mahi, planked salmon
- Taste Profile: Peach, Mango lime, flint, medium + acidity, slight phenolic, slightly honeyed
- About Malagousia: Saved from extinction in the 1980’s, this white wine grape continues to impress those who’ve been lucky enough to try it. Wines lean more towards richer, aromatic tropical fruit flavors (mango and peach!) along with a crisp bitter-citrus note. The best wines come from Macedonia from the Epanomi PGI (PGI is a regional wine classification of Greece) and it’s possible to find Malagousia blended with Assyrtiko to increase the acidity.
- Perfect for: high tea, spa drinking, grandmother visits
- Pairs with: Vietnamese salad rolls, sushi
- Taste Profile: Aromatic (muscat), honeydew, red apple skin, cantaloupe, grapefruit zest, high acidity, dry, lemon/lime, slight honeyed quality
- About Moschofilero: This is one of those wines where the aromas will deceive you: it smells sweetly of perfume, muscat grapes, and raw honey crystals but, upon tasting it, you’ll discover that Moschofilero is bone-dry. The grape itself is a pinkish gray grape (just like Pinot Grigio) and, occasionally, you’ll find the wines have a copper tinge to the color. This wine is one of those wines that you sit and smell, and continue to smell until your nose stops working; it has such fine aromatics.