The Vladikas distillery is the only one in Serres, an area of serious Tsipouro consumers! The vineyards have been planted along the Strymonas river. Every evening around 18.00 there is a delicious breeze, which, according to its producers, favours Lord Amber’s production.
Lord Amber Aged Tsipouro
Vladikas Winery and Distillery has created an unusual tsipouro in all respects: aged for two years, its taste is deep with a strong bouquet of aromas reminiscent of whisky
The atmospheric port side city of Thessaloniki is a place where culinary delights and libations can be favoured on the bustling sea front or in its lively streets. On one of these, I encountered a supermarket with organic products, with an aesthetically unremarkable exterior but a veritable treasure trove of products inside, one of which was Lord Amber.
Tsipouro, a clear, pomace brandy from Northern Greece is a distilled spirit made with the residue from the wine press. Traditionally a humble drink, created by the monks of Mount Athos seven centuries ago, tsipouro used to come second to ouzo as the Greek aperitif of choice. Its increasing popularity in the past fifteen years though, has made demand soar.
Young oenologist Nikos Vladikas, founder of the Vladikas Winery and Distillery in Serres, followed an old family technique by placing good quality double distillation tsipouro in oak barrels and letting it age. Thus, Lord Amber was born. Taking its name from its colour, Lord Amber is an unusual tsipouro in all respects. Aged for two years, its taste is deep with a strong bouquet of aromas reminiscent of whisky. Notes of dried apricot, figs and caramel as well as a spicy aftertaste of smoke and dark chocolate create a distinctive flavour.
Taking its name from its colour, Lord Amber is an unusual tsipouro in all respects. Aged for two years, its taste is deep with a strong bouquet of aromas reminiscent of whisky
Nikos and his business partner, Miltiades Fegomitides selected a curvaceous, vintage-inspired bottle reminiscent of the ones used for cognac.
Their main goal is to change the way people drink tsipouro. They believe Lord Amber could be the base spirit for a number of unique cocktails and they are currently collaborating with several bars in Northern Greece and Athens to promote that idea.
The Vladikas family interest in viticulture started in the 1960’s. Tsipouro was part of Nikos’ childhoodmemories, while growing up in the village of Lefkonas. He remembers his grandfather resting after a hard day’s work, surrounded by enormous wooden barrels and he can still recall the first time he tried tsipouro as a child. He was thirsty and mistook tsipouro for water but loved the taste.
Nikos in his formative years, followed his father visiting distilleries and wineries all over Northern Greece and he was the first in his family to acquire an Oenology degree from the University of Athens.
In 2008 the Vladikas Winery and Distillery was founded in Serres, and guided by Nikos, they ventured into producing Tsipouro. The brand also produces wines from various Greek grapes and is also developing Lord Dark, a tsipouro aged for 4 years.
Their main goal is to change the way people drink tsipouro. They believe Lord Amber could be the base spirit for a number of unique cocktails and they are currently collaborating with several bars in Northern Greece and Athens to promote that idea
Lefkonas, as it stands now is one of the many villages formed after the fall of Asia Minor, which ended the Greco-Turkish War in 1922. Refugees from Pontus, Eastern Thrace and some Sarakatsani, an ethnic Greek population who used to live as nomadic shepherds, settled in the village. Near the village, on the hill of “Simitzi-bair”, a Turkish name, the location of an ancient roman settlement has been found