About me

Follow Effi drinks wine on WordPress.com

My name is Effi Tsournava and I have always been very curious about taste and aromas (I made my first fragrance at the age of 5 using lemon and orange tree leaves…), so I studied Chemistry and quickly became a self-confessed winegeek. Born in Greece, but left after completing my Bachelor to explore a whole new wine world in Montpellier, France. There I enrolled at one of the world’s leading wine schools, Montpellier SupAgro from where I eventually earned my M.Sc. in Viticulture and Oenology, spending half a year at the affiliated campus in Geisenheim, Germany. Currently based in London, after 2 years in France and Germany, I still miss my baguette and strudel! However, I am making up for it whilst enjoying great wines and writing about them here!


39 thoughts on “About me

  1. Thanks Effi, I just came across your blog & loved your tasting video for being so much fun. I’m based in Athens and a wine enthusiast myself. Unfortunately I don’t see anything written by you since last year… I hope you’ll continue your lovely blog😀🍷

    1. Hey Marica, so nice of you to stop by and leave a comment! I jsut came back with a new video… 🙂 You are very kind, I am glad you enjoyed the video! Let me know of any wines you think I should try! Have a great day!

    1. Veronica, thank you for spending the time to write a comment nd visitng my blog, much appreciated! It is very important to find new bloggers and you are obsiously passionate about wine 🙂 If you try a Greek wine that you particularly enjoy, please drop me a line, I would be delighted! All the best with your new blogging adventure!

  2. Thanks for stopping by MaisonTravers and joining. Bienvenue!

    Loved the blog about the Petrus. I thought I noticed a Meerlust Rubicon on the shelf and then saw it on the menu.

  3. At least you are not too far from France and Germany and can visit often.
    I will be going back to Cape Town soon so look out for more posts from there. Looking forward to doing some great wine tasting while there.

  4. Hi Effi. Thank you for visiting and liking my blog, Appetite for Wine (appetiteforwine.wordpress.com). I am new to blogging, so I appreciate any support. I’ve read some of your blog, and enjoyed it a lot, and have just started following you. Greek wines are just beginning to make a presence is the U.S. My local shop only carries about 12 bottles. What I have tasted has been very impressive, so I am hopeful they will gain in popularity and become more available.

    As a side note, my son attended Queen Mary and King’s College during his college education, and I fell in love with London when we came to visit him. It is a great city! Cheers

    1. Hello! I am very sorry for my late reply but I never received a notification about your comment. Thank you very much for taking the time to read by posts and well done for starting your blog! It is always a rough start but the wine community on WordPress is really lovely and inspiring and we do support and encourage each other.
      I hope that you will find some interesting Greek Wines at your local shop and should you ever need any recommendations, please let me know I would be very glad to help!

      Oh yes, London is an absolutely mesmerising city! it is hard not to fall in love with its atmosphere! 🙂

      Have a lovely day,

  5. Thank you for the recommendations. Of course here in France one would never find such wines. The French stores seldom carry more than a couple of Spanish or Italian wines and the one or two Germans. But then one cannot find the wonderful Mexican wines in the US either. Has to do with import restrictions or some such regulation. The only Greek wines I’ve had were two from back in the mid seventies and they were god awful. But then the South African wines had not come of age wither and the Chilean wines were just starting to reach California. Other states in the US have tried their hand at the wine business and if one were going to pick a pleasant wine the choice would be white. For some reason the reds are harder to make well. I’ve had bad wines from Ohio, Texas, Virginia, New York, Colorado, and many others. Back in the seventies even the California wines were at best ordinary. So I will see what the “Wine Store”, I think that is the name in the Fort Worth Dallas area for the big box chain store, has in Greek wines. The management seems open to new ideas or wines, as they might be., Of course everything is almost double in price due to shipping costs. The wines I get here in France are at least half the cost and twice the quality, or so it seems. By the way, there is a producer in Beaune, Joaquim Carlos, who sells some excellent village burgundy at what amounts to 2.50 euros a bottle. I can buy a ten liter box of it for under 30 euros and it is very good wine. I believe his white box comes from Marsannay, tastes like it. Decent wine, so stop by if you are even in the neighborhood. American would give their eyeteeth for box wine that good at such a cheap price.

    Again, thanks for the recommendations. Bill

  6. Effi, I am heading back to the states come August, I have to start the process of remodeling my house there. That is my birthday month. What Greek wine do you recommend?

    1. Hi William! I am thrilled that you’d like to try some Greek wine in your birthday month 🙂 there are many that spring to mind but I shall try to make a selection. In the white wine front, an Assyrtiko from Santorini is an exceptional option – zesty, fresh, appetisingly dry with mineral finish. A personal favorite is the one from Gavalas winery, but SantoWines and Sigalas are equally superb! Another great variety is Malagousia: an almost extinct grape which was revived by the one and only Vaggelis Gerovassiliou from Epanomi, Northern Greece. Finely aromatic with notes of white peach and apricot with distinctive freshness and elegance. For the Reds, The first one that comes to mind is NOHMA, a blend of 2 vintages, from Palyvos Winery in the Peloponnese. This is the one I had on my birthday in October. Silky and smooth, fruity and earthy with fascinating layers of cigar box, tobacco and dried figs and herbs. A lighter one would be a Xinomavro from Naoussa, Young Vines. I find this one to be an excellent one for the warmer months, a great summer red. Last by no means least is Blue fox from Kir Yianni, a stunning red with lots of character! Other outstanding producers are Tsantalis (the Rapsani reserve is a must-try) and Ktima Alpha with its Single Vineyard Hedgehog being simply excellent.
      There are also many others (Xinomavro from Dalamaras, Ovilos from Biblia Chora, Magic Mountain from Nico Lazaridi), which are absolutely fantastic.

      In case you need further recommendation, I would be very happy to send you more. Please let me know if any of the above are available in your state and I will be very much looking forward to reading your thoughts!

  7. Effi, I’ve been exchanging emails with winemaker friend of mine. California classifies him as an amature since he has never applied for a license to sell. But Mark was in the wine industry back in the seventies before starting his own surfboard manufacturing company in Santa Cruz. About twenty yeas ago he bought three acres of old vine zinfandel and started making about tow or three barrels a year. His vineyard is new the Sutter Creek area in Amador County (Ridge Vineyards used to make some of the best zinfandel from that area), and Mark has made some excellent wines. We did a vertical two years ago and the wines were tasty. But more to the point. With the drought in its third year Mark has decided to dispense with the drip system and do a more severe pinching off of berry growth. That was something that M LeRoy instituted at Romanee Conti and La Tache in the late forties, just after the war. Several others in the area are following Mark’s lead (we both are friends with a few other winemakers in the area) and see what happens. He might be lucky to make a barrel this year but if it is good then we might see more commercial vineyards doing the same. This drought does not seem to have an end in sght, may go on for many years. One thing is certain, it will change the California wine industry and many marginal wine makers will go under. Thought you would like to know.

  8. Hi Effi, Happy Friday! I have been given a bottle of Greek wine. Please can I have your email address so that I can send you a photo of it.

    Would love to know more about it. Don’t know if its plonk or a goodie.

    Warm regards

  9. Effi,

    Thanks for stopping by Foodwinebeertravel.com. Please come back again. I look forward to readidng more about the Greek Wines.

  10. Hello Efi, thank you for liking one of my posts, I hope you will find others of interest. I did not know that Greek wine was becoming know quality beyond the borders of Greece. But almost all of the world is very ignorant of the quality of wine made in Mexico. The vineyards that survived the purges by the Catholic Church back in the 1600s do make some outstanding reds and whites with prices to match. Of course here in France the wine market is predominantly French as is the cheese. But I can’t complain, at least I can afford a fifth growth from time to time and a superior bottle of burgundy when I have the extra money.

    Keep up the good work reporting of good wine and food. It’s a shared experience that unites so many people who otherwise not take notice of each other.

  11. Great info on your site. I wish I could describe what I smell/taste in a wine. It’s only when someone else tells me that it clicks!

    1. Thank you very much for your kind comment and for stopping by! I understand your point but really it’ just a matter of practice and by smelling several fruits, flowers, vegetables , dried nuts etc helps you build your “mental aroma library”. Cheers!

  12. Hello Effi,
    noted your blog post comments on DeClasse – thanks for taking the time!
    In the rest of my life, I’m a Theatre and Residential designer, so I tend to
    note details e.g. layout, symbolism, etc. – love your blog banner logo, very clever.

  13. Thanks Effi for visiting whiskandmuddler.com and following my blog. Nice to meet fellow wine lover! You have some great posts as well, I just signed up for your emails. And I agree, nothing says springtime in a glass like NZ SBs! The Craggy Range Te Muna Road SB is one of my all-time favs from NZ. Delish!
    Thanks! Tanya

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