The Oinofile: Mikri Kivotos Red Blend Wine (Lantides Estate)

Posted by at 9 March, at 14 : 13 PM Print

Mythology tells us that after slaying the fabled Nemean lion and bringing its carcass to Mycenae’s King Eurystheus to complete the first of his ten labors, the Greek demigod Heracles celebrated his feat with some of the region’s best Agiorgitiko wine. Since then, the storied grape has been nicknamed the “Blood of Heracles.” And so it comes as no surprise that this varietal is the primary grape cultivated in Nemea, the Peloponnese’s most important winegrowing region.


Mikri Kivotos Red Blend

Red blends, once discriminated against by wine purists as Frankenstein-like concoctions, are increasingly embraced by wine critics and enthusiasts alike. By blending varietals artfully, winemakers are recognized for their creative ability, resulting in wines whose tastes and attributes are created by design. In Greece, Panos Lantides of Lantides Estates is taking this approach with his Mikri Kivotos (Little Ark) Red Blend.

Combining the Agiorgitiko variety local to his estate in Nemea, Peloponnese, with Xinomavro from Florina in Northern Greece, Lantides has created a wine of complexity and depth.

Vital Statistics

Varietals: Agiorgitiko and Xinomavro (50/50)
Provenance: Agiorgitiko from Nemea, Xinomavro from Florina in Northern Greece
ABV 14%

Body: Medium to Full

  • Xinomavro (which translates to “Dry Black”) is often compared with merlot for its dry, rich flavors.
  • After bottling, Mirki Kivotos is cellared underground for an additional twelve months.
  • The Mikri Kivotos Red Blend is aged for fourteen months in new oak barrels brought from the Russian Caucasus and from Allier in France.



Mikri Kivotos Red Blend Wine, Lantides Estate
Beautiful and intense deep purple color
with some brick-colored hues


Complex: Bouquet of smoky black fruits
(dark cherries, blackberries and raspberries)
with hints of licorice, ripe tomato and vanilla
(from its oak barrel aging)


  • Good balance. Complex with solid,
    velvety tannins, this is a structured wine
    with a long aftertaste and persistent aromas
  • Pairs well with grilled red meats
    and traditional Greek dishes
    such as moussaka
  • Decant to drink immediately,
    optimally drink five years in


About the Winery

Lantides Estate has more than 22 hectares of vineyards located in and around Xerokampos, Nemea (Peloponnese), and produces upwards of 200,000 bottles per year. Founded in 1993 by Cyprus-born vintner Panos Lantides, nearly half of its wines are exported to the US, China, Canada, U.K., Germany, Swiss, Austria, Belgium and Cyprus.

At Lantides Estate, Agiorgitiko, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blank, Assyrtiko, Malagouzia and Moschofilero are cultivated and vinted.

Lantides Estates occupies one of the oldest vineyards in Nemea, nestled between two mountains. The winery’s Argiogitiko is cultivated on the eastern side of Asprokampos mountain at an altitude of 650 meters, grown in clay soil with calcareous components and excellent drainage. The Agiorgitiko cultivated in Nemea is blended with Xinomavros from Amyntaio Florina at an altitude of 550 meters on the Amyndeon plateau.


About the Winemaker

Panos Lantides was born in Morphou, Cyprus, where he lived until 1970. He studied oinology in Montpellier, France and, upon acquiring his degree, furthered his knowledge of viniculture in Bordeaux.

In Greece, he was main oenologist for a large contemporary company, applying his craft in the wine-producing regions of Nemea, Attica and Mantinia. Before acquiring the property in Nemea known now as Lantides Estates, he owned a small vineyard in Attica.

In 2000, the property in Xerocampos, Nemea was ready, and shortly thereafter, he began designs for a second vineyard in nearby Asprocampos as well as another in Scotini of Argolida. Today his wineries produce several varietals, including Agiorgitiko, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blank, Assyrtiko, Malagouzia and Moschofilero.



Mina Foods | 100 Research Dr., Milford, CT 06460 | (203) 874-6462 |




Related Posts

Comments are closed.