It was great to visit the Greek area during ProWein 2014. Unfortunately, I had not enough time to taste all I wanted to (especially Gaia and Ktima Biblia Chora were too busy – which is a very good sign – when I tried to taste their fabulous wines). However, what I did taste before and after the big #winelover #rapsanilover vertical tasting at the Tsantali stand, was all incredibly fascinating. I was selling Greek wines in 1984-85, the quality was not bad, some wines were already very good, but what has been achieved in the past decade is absolutely incredible! The all-round quality has been explosively increasing, especially regarding the freshness and purity of the wines, but also the genuineness of terroir-driven wines revisited with modern technology. I was a big fan of Greek wines, now I am definitely a fully convinced #Greekwinelover…
I have always been in love with assyrtiko wines from Santorini. Of course every real #winelover will now about Sigalas wines, a very well-known wine producer on Santorini Island. Once, very spectacular, but the last wines I tasted in the past years gave me the impression that the quality of the wines was getting inversely proportional with the increasing media coverage. I was delighted to taste wines from a – for me – unknown smaller winery: ARTEMIS KARAMOLEGOS. Together with my highly appreciated fellow #winelover Ted Lelekas (may be the very best ambassador ever of the Greek wines & gastronomy) I had the opportunity and pleasure to taste 9 wines, presented and commented by Export Manager Dimitris Kekas.
Düsseldorf was during 4 days (including Saturday Off tastings!) the international wine and spirits capital of the world. The ProWein wine & spirits fair from 23 to 25 March counted 4,830 exhibitors from 47 countries and more than 48,000 international visitors from international wholesale, retail and specialist retail, experts from the CHR/Horeca and press.
The event attracted more visitors from both Germany and abroad: 48,000 visitors, 7% more than 2013 (45,168). One third of the visitors was for the first time at ProWein. Not only the number of European visitors increased; there were also twice as much visitors from China and Hong Kong as in 2013. Visitors and exhibitors were very satisfied about this fantastic international trade event. All are looking forward to the next editions of ProWein, to be held in Düsseldorf from 15 to 17 March 2015 and 13 to 15 March 2016.
Just before the fantastic CHILEAN WINES ON TOUR tasting in the Netherlands, I received 12 bottles of wines from Chile, allowing me to (re)discover the wines of one of my favourite wineries there, VIÑA MAQUIS and their sister winery CALCU. Tasting such high quality wines is always a pleasure. The charming Marcela Molina, commercial manager of the company was pleased to send me those samples. Some of them were already tasted during ProWein 2013 (see here) but it is good to have a second opinion of a wine, this time in quite moments, at home.
A BIT OF MAGIC: CALCU WINES
Why ‘magic’, not only because the wines are very well made, but also because of the name ‘CALCU’, meaning… MAGICIAN in Mapudungun (Mapuche language).
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My last visit was for the stand of EMILIANA. It was very nice to see Andrés Gillmore again and of course the iconic man that I interviewed in the early morning, Alvaro Espinoza.
Meeting and greeting one of my wine heroes, Alvaro Espinoza!
© Daniel Flores Productions
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I absolutely had to stop at the UNDURRAGA table, for many reasons… I was very impressed by my visit at the winery, all fantastic people with a great passion with what they do. The most impressive part at that time was not the entry level range (Undurraga, Aliwen… very popular in the Netherlands thanks to the great job of their Off Trade importer Albert Heijn, market leader in the Dutch supermarket world) but the higher ranges. I was really interested by the pioneer’s work of a young and talented winemaker called Rafael Urrejola, together with the great Chilean terroir consultant Pedro Parra and viticulturist Robert Pinto, expert in organic/biodynamic vineyards. I tasted there the first vintages of a new range called “T.H.”, standing for TERROIR HUNTER. Now, years later, that young winemaker Rafael Urrejola became chief-winemaker of the Undurraga Company and is doing very well! It was a great pleasure to meet and greet him again during the Dutch Chilean Wines on Tour 2013.