Halkia Amber

Assyrtiko Amber - Halkia, Nemea, Peloponnese - Organic winery - Natural wine - Orange Assyrtiko - Eklektikon

Halkia Amber is a skin contact vinification of a certified organic Assyrtiko, by female grower Anna Halkia, in the region of Nemea, in the Peloponnese. Nemea is known as the birthplace of the Agiorgitiko grape, but the Cycladic Assyrtiko grape shows beautiful roundness and balance here.

  • Grower: Halkia
  • Vintage: 2018
  • Grapes: Assyrtiko 100%
  • Appellation: PGI Corinth
  • Alcohol: 13.80%
  • Bottle: 750ml
  • Viticulture: Organic (certified)
  • Vinification: 4-day maceration and 12 days of native fermentation, in a stainless steel tank, controlled at 16-18C, with no additions or any manipulation. It was not filtered or clarified, after a 3-month stay in the tank with its fine lees.
  • Notes: Pale golden color with citrus and lactic aromas, and a very structured palate with noticeable tannins.

Viticulture

  • Organic (certified)
  • Climate: Mild Mediterranean, with periods of extreme heat and cold Winters.
  • Soil: Clay
  • Vine age: Planted in 2013
  • Altitude: 280m
  • Slope: –
  • Planting density: 3500 vines / ha
  • Yield: 2 – 3kg / plant
  • Irrigation: Drip irrigation in extreme heat periods during the Summer
  • Spraying: Copper and sulfur, every 10 days during May and June
  • Harvesting: Manually in plastic crates

Vinification

  • Pressing: Pneumatic press for 2 hours
  • Temperature Control: 16-18C during fermentation
  • Maceration: 4 days in stainless steel
  • Yeast: Ambient
  • Malolactic: Naturally completed
  • Maturation: 3.5 months in stainless steel tank
  • Clarification: None
  • Filtration: None
  • Production: 1,000 lt
  • Alcohol: 13.80%
  • Acidity: 5.70 gr/l
  • RS: 2.40 gr/l
  • Total sulfites: 40 mg/l
  • Certification: Organic Grapes
  • Bottle: 750ml

Anna Halkia is a small organic female grower and winemaker in Nemea, the largest winemaking region of Greece and home to the Agiorgitiko grape (which is the most planted red Greek grape).

Anna grew up in Australia with her immigrant parents, and moved back to Nemea as an adult, to start her family with her husband. Her consciousness and care for her family had led her to organic viticulture, which, she felt, would shine more if she turned into her own wine, instead of selling her organic grapes as raw material and mixed with inferior quality grapes. In the early 2000s, she decided to create a basic winemaking facility in the back of her house, where the family’s vineyards are located. The lack of investment forced her to rely on basic technology and natural winemaking. There was no surplus of funds to buy lab yeasts and enzymes, which a consulting oenologist had advised her to do, so necessity turned her to wild fermentation and lo-fi winemaking. Her wines, naturally, earned a following, due to their raw expression of the organic fruit. Anna also applied and received her organic certification, to prove part of the work that goes into the vineyard.

Today Anna is still selling locally the small-batch wines she makes from Agiorgitiko, Assyrtiko, and Roditis grapes, following the same methods she was forced to adopt, and which helped them stand out from the norm.

Nemea is the largest winemaking region of Greece, and home to the most planted red grape of Greece, the indigenous Agiorgitiko. It has a PDO status (PDO Nemea) for red wines of 100% Agiorgitiko. “Agiorgitiko” means “Saint George”, which was the old name of Nemea (“Agios Georgios”).

A city in the Peloponnese, in the south of Greece, Nemea has a rich winemaking history since ancient times, when it was called “Fliasion Pedion”. Nemea was also known for “Nemia”, one of the most famous athletic competition of ancient times, along with the Olympic games.

In Nemea, one can visit the ancient town of Nemea, the monastery of “Panagia Vrahou” which is built on the cliff of the nearby mountain, the numerous wineries, or celebrate the annual wine festival.