Above: Boutari’s Santorini winemaker Ioanna Vamakouri was featured last month by veteran wine writer and wine writer Louisa Hargrave.
“Traditionally,” wrote veteran wine writer and winemaker Louisa Hargrave last month, “Santorini’s wines have been heavily oxidized and highly alcoholic. But in 1989, Boutari—Greece’s most prominent wine company—saw potential for a radically new style of assyrtiko. By picking the vines three weeks earlier than usual, Boutari (and others who followed suit) have made intricately textured, delightfully aromatic and refreshingly bone-dry wines. Boutari’s French-trained enologist Ioanna Vamakouri told me that Santorini’s old-time growers had difficulty understanding why Boutari would sacrifice alcohol content and reduce yield to make these more delicate wines, until they realized that, by marketing the modern style of assyrtiko internationally, Boutari could pay them twice what they earned just two years ago.”