Agiorgitiko: The Noble Red of Nemea

Agiorgitiko (pronounced “Ah-yor-YEE-ti-ko”), often hailed as the noble red of Nemea, is like the charismatic hero of Greek mythology in the vineyard. Known for its versatility and elegance, Agiorgitiko is a grape variety that weaves tales of ancient lands, heroic feats, and the warmth of the Mediterranean sun. Let’s journey into the world of Agiorgitiko – a wine that embodies the soul and history of Greece.

Primary Flavours

Delving into a glass of Agiorgitiko is akin to biting into a Greek banquet of flavours. This variety is famed for its luscious dark fruit notes – think ripe cherries, blackberries, and plums, with a sprinkle of spices and a hint of earthiness. In the sun-kissed vineyards of Nemea, it sometimes reveals a softer side, with velvety textures and a whisper of sweet spices, reminiscent of a warm Mediterranean evening.

Taste Profile

Agiorgitiko Agiorgitiko Agiorgitiko
Aspect Rating out of 5 Characteristic
Sweetness 🍷 Dry with a hint of sun-kissed fruit, like a Greek myth
Body 🍷🍷🍷🍷 Full-bodied, as opulent as a banquet in Olympus
Tannins 🍷🍷🍷 Smooth yet notable, like the rhythm of a lyre
Acidity 🍷🍷🍷 Vibrant, as refreshing as a Mediterranean breeze
Alcohol by Volume 🍷🍷🍷🍷 Typically around 13-14%, as warm as a sunbeam

Growing Regions

Agiorgitiko is a proud native of Greece, with its heart firmly planted in the Nemea region of the Peloponnese. This is where it truly shines, basking in the Grecian sun, nurtured by the region’s unique terroir. While its fame may not have spread far and wide like some of its international counterparts, within Greece, Agiorgitiko is a celebrated star, adorning the tables of locals and tourists alike with its regal presence.


The story of Agiorgitiko is as ancient as the hills of Nemea themselves. It’s a grape that has been part of Greek viticulture for centuries, mentioned in tales and folklore, intertwining its history with that of the land.

This variety has watched empires rise and fall, quietly crafting wines that have delighted generations. Agiorgitiko is not just a grape; it’s a living piece of Greek history, a testament to the enduring love affair between this land and its wine.

Ideal Serving Temperatures

Serving Agiorgitiko at the right temperature is like setting the stage for a classic Greek drama – it needs to be just perfect. Aim for about 16-18°C (61-64°F) to truly appreciate its complexity and balance.

At this temperature, the wine’s rich fruit flavours and velvety tannins are highlighted, allowing Agiorgitiko’s full-bodied elegance to take the spotlight. It’s like finding the sweet spot where every sip becomes a poetic expression of the grape’s character.


Selecting the ideal glass for Agiorgitiko is crucial for the full enjoyment of its aristocratic profile. A glass with a wide bowl that narrows slightly at the rim is perfect, as it allows the wine’s bouquet to gather and ascend, greeting your senses with its rich aromas.

The shape also ensures that the wine is delivered to your palate in a way that emphasises its balanced acidity and smooth tannins. It’s about giving Agiorgitiko the throne it deserves, allowing it to rule over your senses with its regal charm.


Decanting this wine can be as essential as a prologue in a Greek epic – it sets the scene for what’s to come. This process is particularly beneficial for the more full-bodied and tannic expressions of the grape, softening the wine and allowing its complex layers of flavour to unfold gracefully.

However, younger, fruitier styles of Agiorgitiko are often best enjoyed fresh, capturing the vibrant essence of the grape without the need for decanting. Like a well-told story, decanting can enhance the experience, adding depth and perspective to the wine’s narrative.


Agiorgitiko has a notable capacity for ageing, evolving over time like the chapters of a historical saga. In its youth, the wine is vibrant and fruit-forward, but as it ages, it develops intriguing secondary characteristics.

Notes of leather, earth, and spice start to appear, weaving a complex and rich tapestry of flavours. The ageing potential varies, with some wines best enjoyed within a few years, while others can gracefully age for a decade or more, continually revealing new facets of their personality.

Food Pairings


  • Grilled Tuna Steak with Olive Tapenade: The rich, meaty texture of the tuna, complemented by the savory olive tapenade, pairs splendidly with Agiorgitiko’s juicy red fruit flavours and velvety texture, highlighting the wine’s ability to stand up to bold, flavourful dishes.
  • Shrimp Saganaki: This traditional Greek dish of shrimp baked in a tomato and feta sauce marries well with Agiorgitiko’s medium body and hints of spice, enhancing the sweetness of the shrimp and the tanginess of the tomato.

Vegetarian Flavours

  • Stuffed Bell Peppers with Rice and Herbs: The natural sweetness of bell peppers filled with herbed rice finds a delightful match in Agiorgitiko, whose soft tannins and ripe fruit notes bring warmth and complexity to the dish.
  • Eggplant Moussaka: Layers of eggplant, potatoes, and a creamy béchamel sauce make this Greek classic a perfect companion for Agiorgitiko. The wine’s smooth tannins and dark cherry flavours complement the richness of the moussaka beautifully.

Australian Dishes

  • Lamb Chops with Rosemary and Garlic: The robust flavours of lamb, enhanced with rosemary and garlic, align perfectly with Agiorgitiko’s structured yet approachable profile, where the wine’s herbal notes play well with the dish’s earthy seasoning.
  • Beef Meat Pie: A hearty Australian beef pie, with its rich fillings and flaky pastry, goes hand in hand with Agiorgitiko. The wine’s berry notes and acidity cut through the pie’s richness, making each bite even more enjoyable.

Cheese Pairings

  • Manchego with Fig Jam: The nutty flavours of Manchego cheese paired with sweet fig jam enhance Agiorgitiko’s berry flavours and smooth finish, creating a delightful contrast on the palate.
  • Aged Cheddar: The sharpness of aged cheddar, with its creamy texture, complements Agiorgitiko’s fruit-forward character and body, providing a simple yet satisfying pairing.

Dessert Delights

  • Berry Cobbler: The natural sweetness and tartness of a mixed berry cobbler echo the fruit characteristics of Agiorgitiko, making for a harmonious dessert pairing that enhances the natural berry flavours of both the wine and the dish.
  • Dark Chocolate Mousse: The intense flavours of dark chocolate mousse are balanced by Agiorgitiko’s vibrant red fruit notes and velvety mouthfeel, rounding out a dining experience with a luxurious finish.

These pairings showcase Agiorgitiko’s versatility and its ability to enhance a variety of dishes, from seafood and vegetarian options to robust meats and decadent desserts. Whether served at a casual meal or a formal dinner,

Agiorgitiko is a fantastic wine choice that complements a wide range of flavours, bringing a touch of Greek elegance to any table.

Wine Labels

Exploring different expressions of Agiorgitiko through various labels offers an insight into its versatility. Below is a table showcasing some popular brands, highlighting the diversity of this distinctive grape:

Agiorgitiko Agiorgitiko Agiorgitiko
Country Wine Label Varietal Name & Style
Greece Gaia EstateNemea Agiorgitiko - Dry, Full-bodied
Greece Domaine SkourasNemea Agiorgitiko - Dry, Elegant
Greece Palivou EstateNemea Agiorgitiko - Dry, Robust
Greece Ktima PapaioannouNemea Agiorgitiko - Dry, Aged
Greece Domaine TseleposNemea Agiorgitiko - Dry, Modern
Note: These brands are known for their quality and representation of the Agiorgitiko grape, ranging from traditional to contemporary styles, each expressing the unique character of this versatile varietal. Note: These brands are known for their quality and representation of the Agiorgitiko grape, ranging from traditional to contemporary styles, each expressing the unique character of this versatile varietal. Note: These brands are known for their quality and representation of the Agiorgitiko grape, ranging from traditional to contemporary styles, each expressing the unique character of this versatile varietal.

Agiorgitiko might not have the international fame of some of its counterparts, but it’s a grape that wine enthusiasts should not overlook. With its combination of depth, elegance, and a hint of Greek mystique, it offers a wine experience that is both unique and captivating.

Whether you’re enjoying a glass on its own or pairing it with a sumptuous meal, Agiorgitiko is a grape that promises a journey through the rich tapestry of Greek winemaking tradition and history. So, pour a glass of Agiorgitiko, and toast to the hidden treasures of the wine world.

Is Agiorgitiko a red or white wine?

Agiorgitiko is a red wine grape, known for producing a range of styles from light and fruity to deep, full-bodied reds.

Where does the name Agiorgitiko originate from?

The name “Agiorgitiko” literally means “St. George’s grape” in Greek, referring to the patron saint. It is believed to originate from the Nemea region, where St. George is a significant historical figure.

What wine is Agiorgitiko similar to?

Agiorgitiko is similar to Merlot, due to its soft tannins and fruity, approachable nature. It’s also comparable to other Mediterranean reds, known for their balance of fruit and spice.

Is Agiorgitiko known by any other names?

Agiorgitiko is sometimes referred to as “St. George’s grape,” which is the direct translation of its Greek name. However, it is most commonly known as Agiorgitiko, especially in wine markets outside Greece.

What are some interesting facts about Agiorgitiko?

• Agiorgitiko is a prominent red grape variety from Greece, specifically from the Peloponnese region.
• Known for its versatility, it’s used in everything from fresh, light wines to aged, robust reds.
• Typically offers flavours of red fruits, plums, and spices, with soft tannins.
• Often compared to Merlot for its approachable, fruit-forward profile.

Read the full article about Agiorgitiko here!

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