Liatiko 2019 Lyrarakis, Crete
Lyrarakis Aggelis Liatiko 2019
This is made from ungrafted Liatiko vines, low yielding, and then fermented with lots of whole berries with no added yeast. It’s a really smooth, elegant wine that reminds me a bit of Nebbiolo or Xinomavro, with a pale-ish colour and good tannic structure, as well as silky, sweet strawberry and cherry fruit. There’s freshness and elegance here. Has some rose petal and iodine detail, showing great balance between the sweet red fruits and the grainy, tannic structure. Such an interesting wine that should develop nicely. 93/100 Jamie Goode Review
Planted on their own rootstock in the 1930’s resulting in small berry, low yielding grapes with exceptional intensity of flavour. The wine is fermented in open oak barrels with no temperature control or fining.
The Lyrarakis estate is a family vineyard and winery which has been producing high quality wines since 1966 with a strong focus on rare local varieties, single variety and single vineyard wines. The family is credited with the revival of two ancient Cretan varieties, Dafni and Plyto while a third “vineyard treasure”, the indigenous Melissaki, has recently been added to the credits.
Lyrarakis is located in the mountainous commune of Alagni (440 metres above sea-level), south of the city of Heraklion, in Crete. The soils are predominantly loam with either more sand or clay depending on the vineyard site. The well-preserved 14th-century stone-presses in the fields around the winery are testament to the area’s long history of grape-growing and winemaking.
In charge of winemaking is Myriam Ambuzer who has been vital in securing Lyrarakis a place in the elite wineries of Greece. Her philosophy emphasises precision, purity and supple texture of the fruit. She argues it is all about expressing authenticity, achieving harmony and that every variety needs to be worked in its own special way.