In Greek mythology, Apollo fell in love with the wood nymph Daphne. Daphne loved only nature and asked her father, Peneus, that she be allowed to never marry, such as the goddess Diana. But one doesn’t trifle with the gods. Apollo chased Daphne through the woods, when she finally cried out to her father, who changed her into a bush. The story has inspired poets and artists, including John William Waterhouse (the print to the left). The bush is a black laurel bush, or the Daphne bush, which inspired a wine. The dark Mavrodaphne grape was named after the fruits of the Daphne bush.
I found this wine in our wine refrigerator. I don’t remember buying it and I have no record of it in CellarTracker. I can only assume it was recommended by either Jay at Party Source or JP at Party Town. I don’t know when we purchased it or how much we paid. I am pretty sure we’ll purchase it again.
This was such a unique wine. First off, Mavrodaphne from Patras is a Greek wine, which is sort of off the beaten wine path. We’ve enjoyed other Greek wines, and even took a short seminar on Greek wines. They are not all bad – believe me. But a red dessert wine from Greece was a pleasant surprise last night.
The nose reminded Kevin of inhaling the scent of of the inside of a
bourbon barrel, with cherry woodsy tones and toasted vanilla. I kept
imagining a cherry just lightly dipped in chocolate. This wine is lighter than a port, but is fortified with 15% alcohol. There were all sorts of flavors on the palate, including chocolate, plums, raisins, and a little bit of coffee. I always fancy I can taste the brandy in a dessert wine, perhaps because I just enjoy my brandy.
I pulled out some chocolate (always have chocolate on hand). While it didn’t complement the bitter dark chocolate, the wine and chocolate were both enhanced when I tried the milk chocolate. This lighter dessert wine would make a great aperitif or dessert on a warm summer night. The wine isn’t too heavy or syrupy, and is an unexpected surprise.
Mavrodaphne from Patras, Cambas Wineries
Peloponnese region, Greece
Update: A reader, David, has pointed out to me that this wine more than likely came from the Closeout rack at Liquor Direct. Since the Closeout section at the Ft. Thomas Liquor Direct is the impetus for many of my impulse buys, he’s probably right! Thanks David!
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