The wines of Chamlija, Thrace, Turkey
A brilliant new Turkish winery impresses

Website: chamlija-wine.com

Chamlija is a new winery located in Thrace, Turkey, near the border with Bulgaria. The region itself is the Strandja massif, a volcanic arc 1.5 billion years old, and active until 150 million years ago. There are different terroirs here, including decomposed granite (with or without large pebbles), and also clay/limestone terra rossa. It's a very interesting place for growing vines.

The man behind the project is Mustafa Camlica, and he named the winery Chamlija after his daughter, who designed the striking labels.

There are 65 hectares of vines here, but more are in the process of being established, with the final total set to be 90 hectares. The first vintage was 2011, and current production is just 15 000 litres. This is a winery to watch.

THE WINES

Chamlija Narince 2011 Thrace, Turkey
From decomposed granite soils. Fruity and precise with bright citrus, white peach fruit and good acidity. Lively and fresh. 89/100

Chamlija Chardonnay Istranca 2011 Thrace, Turkey
From reef limestone soils. Fine, fresh, precise toasty nose is citrussy with some sophisticated oak. The palate is pure, focused and nutty with some toast as well as bright citrus and white peach fruit. Grapefruit and herbs, too. 92/100

Chamlija Sauvignon Blanc 2011 Thrace, Turkey
From reef limestone with deep clay: the coldest vineyard in Turkey. Very fine, toasty, grapefruit and citrus nose. Precise palate is bright and focused with citrus and herbs as well as real minerality. Pure, complex wine. 92/100

Chamlija Viognier 2011 Thrace, Turkey
From lacustrine limestone, which was previously a lake bed. Amazingly aromatic with herbs and flowers, pears and peaches. So exotic. The palate is rounded but fresh with herbs, peach, spice and a hint of toast. Amazing precision: this is pure, alive and exotic. 94/100

Chamlija Chardonnay Kirklareli 2011 Thrace, Turkey
Complex and refined with toast, spice and nuts. Some richness. Quite bold with lovely weight, texture and acidity. Very stylish wine. 93/100

Chamlija Istranca 2011 Thrace, Turkey
This red blend of the five Bordeaux varieties comes from coarse gravel soils. Amazing aromatics of raspberries and cherries with some plummy notes. Pure. Focused palate with some jam notes (but not too jammy) and concentrated pure fruit. Lovely. 92/100

Chamlija Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 Thrace, Turkey (barrel sample)
Very pure blackcurrant and raspberry jam notes with focused fruit characters. Well defined, spicy and fine with good concentration and structure. 9294/100

Chamlija Cabernet Franc Merlot 2011 Thrace, Turkey (barrel sample)
A multi-vineyard blend. Expressive aromatic nose with vivid, pure raspberry fruit and some blackberry. The palate  has pure blackberry, plum and cherry fruit with good focus and acidity. Lovely. 9294/100

Chamlija Merlot 2011 Thrace, Turkey (barrel sample)
Two different vineyards. Some spicy oak on the nose. Ripe and full. Bold, rich palate with warm spicy berry fruits. 8992/100

See also:

Arcadia Wines, Turkey

Wines tasted 11/12  
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