Karanika

This young winery was founded by a Dutch couple, Laurens Hartman and Annette van Kampen, both refugees from the business world. Cultivating just four hectares in the extreme north west of Greece, mostly at an elevation of 650 meters on slopes by Lake Vegoritis, they make their wines in a just-built gravity-flow winery. This area of Greece enjoys the coolest climate of any wine-growing district and is best known for the aristocratic Xinomavro grape, which plays a prominent role in their programme.

HKA-XBSNV Karanika  Brut

Available Wines

Karanika 2009 Terra Levea Xinomavro-Cabernet Sauvignon (Florina)

Xinomavro has every right to proclaim itself Greece’s most noble black grape, so there is a royal quality to its alliance here with Cabernet. There are marriages where one partner dominates the other, but this is one of equals. They prove to be remarkably well suited, sharing similar characters but different personalities. They are both strong and assertive, but the Xinomavro has a special high-toned perfume that is nicely balanced by the deep, brooding tones of the Cabernet. Again, we have here a singular and uncommon wine, not a gentle pleaser, but a vivid and expressive one that demands food.

Karanika 2011 Grand Reserve (Amyndeon – Xinomavro/Limniona)

Laurens changes his blend every year depending on what seems best for the vintage, so we get the two key Northern grapes here in an unusually high wire assemblage. There is plenty of red fruit, but lots of room for the wine to grow.

Karanika 2013 Brut (Assyrtiko – Xinomavro)

Laurens Hartman had the intuitive and now proven-to-be brilliant notion that Xinomavro could make exceptional sparkling wine by the classic method of Champagne. When Stellios Boutaris of Kir-Yianni, the doyen of Xinomavro producers, asked us if we had had this wine, we felt vindicated. Full of breed on the nose, it is bracing, focused and dry. We can honestly say that a better alternative to champagne has not crossed our lips for a long time. Tiny quantities are made. We were allocated 100 six-packs. Tom Stephenson has also praised this wine’s quality and singled it out not just among Greek sparklers, but compared it favorably to champagne. We are so glad to have got in on the ground floor. ~WineWise

Karanika 2014 Assyrtiko (Amyndeon)

Assyrtiko is so intimately associated with the unique characteristics of the island of Santorini that it requires a recalibration to appreciate its very different expression elsewhere. But, just as chardonnay makes great wine in Chablis, Champagne and Corton, so does Assyrtiko reach great heights also in Amyndeon. This is an unusually full and leesy expression of the grape, with a tension between its inner sweetness and its outer stoniness. A true original. ~WineWise

Karanika N.V. Xinomavro Brut Cuvée Speciale [6/750ml]

Laurens Hartman had the intuitive and now proven-to-be brilliant notion that Xinomavro could make exceptional sparkling wine by the classic method of Champagne. When Stellios Boutaris of Kir-Yianni, the doyen of Xinomavro producers, asked us if we had had this wine, we felt vindicated. Full of breed on the nose, it is bracing, focused and dry. We can honestly say that a better alternative to champagne has not crossed our lips for a long time. Tiny quantities are made. We were allocated 80 six-packs.