(*Ed: Or something like it.)

The quickest way to get to the Greek Islands is via Clare Valley.

To immerse yourself instantly into that sea-sprayed, chilled-out, lost-in-time vibe of Santorini, simply take a sip of a unique Clare white, crafted by the Barry family.

It’s made from a classic Greek grape called assyrtiko, native to that white-walled wonderland of Santorini.

The Jim Barry Clare Valley Assyrtiko 2022 heads up a thirst-quenching collection of four zippy summer whites selected by The Australian Wine Club for this special dozen deal.

Just how assyrtiko came to be planted half a world away from its Mediterranean birthplace is an adventure in itself.

Peter Barry, the custodian of Jim Barry Wines, named after his father, was holidaying in the Greek Islands with wife Sue in 2006 when he first tasted assyrtiko over lunch.

assyrtiko barry
Peter Barry with sons Sam, left, and Tom at their vineyard in Clare Valley. Picture: Matt Turner.

Crisp and fresh, it reminded Peter of a good Clare riesling – but with a different flavour profile.

“It immediately struck me as a variety that would work well back home. Its fresh, crisp, acidic qualities and low pH are perfect accompaniments to some of our contemporary Australian food,’’ Peter says.

What began was a decade-long venture to purchase cuttings in Greece, transport and quarantine the cuttings in Australia for two years, nurture them in a nursery for a further two years, and then plant them at a carefully selected site.

The first assyrtiko to be offered under the Jim Barry label – and indeed the first assyrtiko produced in Australia – was harvested during the 2016 vintage from the family’s Lodge Hill vineyard, situated on one of the highest points in Clare.

Nowadays, Peter’s liquid love letter to Santorini continues to charm more Australian wine lovers with the release of each vintage and sits on wine lists at some of Australia’s most celebrated restaurants, including Aria and Bennelong in Sydney, and Melbourne’s Vue de Monde. “It is riesling-esque but more textural – you experience that briny, oyster shell mineral character,’’ says Peter’s son, Sam Barry, the commercial manager at Jim Barry Wines.

It’s a wine with seafood, summer and lazy Mediterranean lunches written all over it – no matter where you chose to pour a glass.

Jim Barry Clare Valley Assyrtiko 2022

Fresh scents of sea spray, white flowers and citrus prepare you for ripples of lemons, grapefruit and cut grass gently washing across the palate. Cleansing minerality flows through, leaving a super-fresh crispness on the finish. Touch of savouriness. Lovely weight (slightly heavier than riesling). Barbecued seafood a perfect partner. 95 points at Royal Melbourne Wine Show. 12% alc; RRP $40 a bottle.

SPECIALS $33.99 a bottle in any dozen; $24.99 a bottle in summer whites dozen.


Pikes Traditionale Clare Valley Riesling 2022

Clare’s excellent 2022 vintage delivered another cracking Traditionale: juicy, zingy and flowing with green apples, tangy limes and a touch of talc. Savour the fresh citrus blossom and jasmine aromas, settle back and take in summer. Red star for exceptional value and 93 points in Halliday Wine Companion. 12% alc; RRP $28 a bottle.

SPECIALS $23.99 a bottle in any dozen; $24.99 a bottle in summer whites dozen.


Corryton Burge Kith Adelaide Hills Pinot Gris 2022

Two Barossa icons come together on this label – the Burge family need no introduction while Corryton Park is their storied homestead in Eden Valley, built in the 1800s. This is a trophy-winning gris: ripe pears, spice, white peach and floral aromas open the door to pear and spice flavours with a touch of cleansing grapefruit pith on the finish. Creamy texture, fresh acidity. Gorgeous. Royal Queensland’s Best Pinot Gris Wine of Show and 96 points. 12.5% alc; RRP $28 a bottle.

SPECIALS $23.99 a bottle in any dozen; $24.99 a bottle in summer whites dozen.


d’Arenberg The Lucky Lizard Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2021

Aromas of oak spice, peaches, stone fruits and cashew lead to a mid-weighted palate of stone fruits, fig and grapefruit. A clean line of acidity keeps it fresh. 90 points from the Halliday Wine Companion. 12.5% alc; RRP $34 a bottle.

SPECIALS $28.99 a bottle in any dozen; $24.99 a bottle in summer whites dozen.

SUMMER WHITES SPECIAL Three bottles of each wine above for $24.99 a bottle. SAVE $90 a dozen.

Order by simply clicking the links to our online store or telephone 1300 765 359 Monday to Friday, from 9am to 5pm AEST. Deals are available only while stocks last. The Australian Wine Club is a commercial partnership with Laithwaites Wine, LIQP770016550. Stockhead is partnering with The Australian Wine Club on this offer.