KOSTAKI WINERY

Kostaki Winery is a brand-new wine project on the island of Samos, created by Evmorfia Kostaki and Lorenz Immerfall. The venture has already drawn admiring glances from both professionals and wine lovers, garnering continued interest and praise.

Kostaki, a native of Samos, and Immerfall, who was born in Bavaria in Germany, met during their winemaking studies in France and have been a couple ever since. Together, they have explored the world of wine, earning Master’s degrees in Viticulture and Oenology, as well as the WSET Diploma. Their journey has taken them to France, Italy, and the United States, as well as across Europe and beyond, where they have sought out exciting wines in remote corners and met the people behind the labels.

In 2020, they decided to embark on a joint venture, founding Kostaki Winery on the Greek island of Samos. After navigating through mountains of paperwork and enduring what both of them described as years of construction chaos, 2023 marked their first harvest.

If you ask them about their relationship with wine, Kostaki will say that it is an emotion that’s often overwhelm- ing, especially since she became a Master of Wine student. “I wouldn’t think of attempting this almost impossible qualification without loving the world of wine,” she says. “However, the constant studying has made me very analytical, causing wine to lose some of its romance and magic. Nevertheless, the spark hasn’t faded, and I enjoy every opportunity I can to relax with a glass of wine and good company.” Meanwhile, Immerfall responds disarmingly, “What’s my relationship with wine? I drink it!”

Immerfall’s personal taste is for fresh, acidic dry wines such as Chenin Blanc, Riesling, or Albarino. These are also the wine styles they strive to achieve at the winery. On the other hand, Kostaki is more of an old-fashioned enthusiast, opting for a nice Bordeaux to delight her senses!

As for their responsibilities, there’s practically no aspect of the work that they don’t get involved in! For them, no two days are the same; that, as they say, is the exciting part of owning a winery. Their tasks vary depending on the time of year, shifting from vineyard work to winery operations or sales.

The months leading up to the first harvest were more demanding than the harvest itself. The winery is situated in a brand-new building, which meant that the construction had to be completed in order to receive the grapes. Everything ran close to the wire, from installing the floor tiles to setting up the cooling system for the tanks. Fortunately, they did get everything ready on time for the harvest. What’s more, they entered the harvest season with a clear idea of the wine styles they wanted to produce. This clarity helped them remain focused and organized, despite it being their very first vintage, but it could not dispel a lurking worry that perhaps producing what they dreamed of wasn’t feasible, at least not in the first year. That’s why the moments they cherished the most came after the harvest, as each passing day saw the wines taking shape. Ultimately, their hard work and determination were rewarded.

After the frenzy of harvest time, spring days are the next busiest. Mornings typically begin early in the vineyard for shoot thinning, followed by activities in the winery such as labeling the new vintage and preparing orders. Evenings are spent on the other side of the island, showcasing the wines to hospitality professionals.

THE GRAPE

With the establishment of Kostaki Winery, Evmorfia and Lorenz have set themselves a simple yet essential goal: to become the benchmark for Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains. This is why they have opted to exclusively work with this particular variety. Their aim is to thoroughly understand how to manage it, both in the vineyard and the winery, in order to achieve the best possible results. They’re keen not to dilute their focus by working with other varieties. By concentrating solely on this often misunderstood grape and crafting exceptional wines with it, they’re looking to enhance the overall appreciation for Muscat and to foster its growth, both on Samos and globally.

The task they’ve set themselves isn’t easy. Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains is among the most demanding grape varieties.

Its thin skin renders it vulnerable to various vineyard diseases, making disease management a top priority throughout the growing season. The high morning humidity on the island of Samos aids in cooling down the vineyard, but then that humidity in the bunch zone needs to be alleviated, so as to minimize disease pressure; this means a thorough leaf removal process is essential. As all the vineyards are trained in bush form, the canopy above the grapes serves as a natural shield against the sun, mitigating the risk of sunburn.

The hard work doesn’t cease once the grapes reach the winery. The must and wine of Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains react very quickly with oxygen, potentially compromising the precision in the aromas they’re trying to achieve. Therefore, they employ a highly reductive approach and exercise extreme caution when handling the wine, to minimize any excessive contact with oxygen. The decision to use screw cap closures across the entire still wine range directly reflects this commitment – they seek to ensure that all their efforts in the cellar are preserved, allowing the wine to reach consumers’ lips as crisp and bright as they intend it to be!

THE WINES

There’s no denying that Samos has become synonymous with sweet wines. However, at Kostaki Winery, they’re not making the traditional sweet wines their priority. Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains is a variety that can yield every possible wine style, and Evmorfia and Lorenz want to prove that the Samos terroir can be both modern and fun, so they’ve decided to be innovative with the grape, adopting revolutionary practices in both the vineyard and the winery. Nonetheless, their main focus is on dry wines, and its their hope that, in the near future, what they produce in this field will be considered among the top Greek wines.

The first harvest of 2023 produced four different wines, all from Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains, which capture the wildness of Samos and the crispness of the Aegean Sea in one bottle.

[1] KOSTAKI DRY

THE FLAGSHIP WINE
A structured, gastronomic dry wine, with delicate aromas of lime, sea shells and orange blossoms.

[2] KOSTAKI ALO

Δείτε Επίσης

THE “OTHER” STYLE OF DRY WINE
a much more approachable wine, with a rounded palate and attractive aromas of green apple, citrus fruit and yeast.

[3] KOSTAKI ANCESTRAL METHOD

THE BRUT NATURE
A sparkling wine with gentle bubbles, and crisp palate, at just 10.5% abv.

KOSTAKI EARLY HARVEST

The off-dry style: An elegant wine with high acidity (due to the early harvest) balanced by just the right amount of residual sugar, and a surprisingly low 9% abv.

Last but not least, they’ve also produced a limited edition rosé that will enter the market next year, coming from a new vineyard planted with Muscat Noir à Petits Grains, the red-skinned mutation of Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains. This is a variety that’s never been used before for varietal wines, at least in Greece, and they’ve had pleasantly sur- prising results, bringing out a wine that exhibits a stunningly juicy red-fruit character.

Kostaki and Immerfall are determined to bring Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains to new levels of excellence. In addition to their current range, they’re also working on a traditional-method sparkling wine. Remaining steadfast in their commitment to never introduce commercial yeast in the winery, it won’t be bottled until the next harvest. They plan to use a pied de cuve to start the second fermentation. A special note for those looking forward to visiting the winery; Evmorfia and Lorenz have created a beautiful balcony with incredible views over western Samos that’s particularly amazing at sunset. It overlooks the vineyard and will be hosting tastings as of the summer of 2025.



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