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Today we are going to review a wine that blew us away from the first sip – Ecosystem Tannat 2015 by Alpha Estate. This is a single-varietal tannat wine from the Amyndeon plateau, situated at the 660m altitude in north-western Macedonia. Tannat is one of the most tannic grape varieties in the world and it has many benefits on our health due to its exceptionally high antioxidant levels. Also, the polyphenol amount is so high in tannat grapes, that the resulting wines are opaque, nearly black in color, with very rough and astringent tannins – all because of the thickness of the berries’ skins. The deep color of tannat comes from a chemical interaction called ‘copigmentation‘, where anthocyanin (the red color in wine) is enhanced by other types of tannins (which would otherwise be invisible). This wine spent 18 months in new Allier-Bertrange french oak casks and another 18 months in the bottle before its release. But enough theory – on to the tasting!
Take a look at the tasting notes below and our detailed assessment of the wine:
Deep and noble crimson color with elegant purple-indigo shades towards the rim of the glass.
The nose is strong, filled mostly with ripe red and black fruit flavours: blue plum, black cherry, blackberry, blueberry, blackcurrant, black raspberry, black plum, aronia berry, marionberry, pomegranate and dried black plum. An instant later the nose is filled with elegant notes of leather, oregano, roasted oakwood, cherry tree wood, black pepper, cloves, allspice, nutmeg, tobacco and some nuanced hints of violets.
The wine is dry, with high alcohol level, high acidity and firm tannin. It feels bold, tannic and seedy, with a fruity-supple character, crisp acidity and grippy, yet velvety tannins. This is an elegant, extracted and complex wine, as it tastes ripe, noble and refined. Overall, the wine has a good balance between primary fruit and secondary aromas and it feels harmonious, appealing and very tannic on the mouthfeel, with a nice grippy accent.
The wine has a long finish and a velvety, crisp and tannic aftertaste.
This is definitely an exceptional wine of Greece and, with a total of 92.6 points scored, this wine is right there, among the best wines we’ve rated so far. Check our complete database on the wine rating page, where you can find all the wines that we have tasted and reviewed or go to the about us page and find out more about our exquisite rating system.
Conclusion: this is a very fine and noble tannat wine that has yet to reach the summit of its prime form – complex, supple and grippy, with velvety tannins and overwhelming acidity, this wine screams for more ageing, as it can definitely resist another 3 to 5 years in the bottle. This is a wine that does not lack neither character nor structure – it feels very well balanced, harmonious and elegant and we are not the only ones that hold it in high esteem, as this wine was awarded 91 points by Robert Parker and 17,5 points by Jancis Robinson. That said, we would strongly suggest to pair this wine with dishes that are rich in natural-meaty flavours and fatty-smooth textures, like for example a filet mignon steak seared in garlic-herb butter on the stove and finished in the oven. Enjoy!
WineStatistics tasting results:
Ecosystem | Tannat | 2015
grape: | tannat |
overall rating: | 92.6 |
maturity: on the rise
conclusion: exceptional | (a must try)
© The WineStatistics ratings are based solely on our own knowledge of the world of wine and on our personal wine tastes, which may, or may not, differ from yours – the reader. Just remember that there are no absolutes of right and wrong in wine appreciation.