Limnos, the 8th largest island of Greece, is located in the northern Aegean. The vast majority of its vineyards are located at low altitudes. Only one grape is allowed for the two existing appellations: Muscat of Alexandria produces the dry Limnos PDO white wines, as well as the sweet Muscat of Limnos PDO wines. It is the only Muscat related appellation for sweet wines in all of Greece that is not based on Muscat Blanc á Petits Grains.
Muscat of Limnos PDO wines can be either fortified or naturally sweet (Vin Naturellement Doux). A Grand Cru designation may be added only for naturally sweet wine produced from selected vineyards.
In my view, the sweet wines of Limnos are some of the best food pairing partners around. They are crowd pleasers as the wines are generally very approachable and youthful. Compared to other more complex sweet Muscat offerings, the Muscat of Limnos wines are lighter in style, less extracted and less dense. This is exactly why they pair seamlessly with a variety of foods, from Chinese cuisine to fruit cakes and blue cheeses.
Excellent quality prevails in most cases, yet they are surprisingly inexpensive. One fine example is the Chatzigeorgiou Muscat of Limnos Grand Cru 2009, which retails at 8 Euro. The aromas are captivating: Lime, orange zest, honeysuckle and thyme. It is smooth, with good levels of acidity, and spicy Muscat notes. The wine is well integrated, beautifully balanced and scores with a persistent finish.
At this price tag it seriously outclasses many other wines. With food, it works wonders. The next time you plan on inviting friends for a dinner party, surprise them with a glass of Muscat of Limnos.