Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Lovely Tonia Buxton On The Rock's Wines

Finally, a year and a few months into this project, I meet my first celebrity. In early August, before darting off to Australia and surviving an aeronautical bomb scare, I had the pleasure of interviewing Tonia Buxton, star of Discovery Travel & Living's My Greek and Cypriot Kitchen, at Archontiko Papadopoulou, a beautiful cultural center in Kornos (just twenty-five minutes outside of Nicosia) focused on the preservation of Cypriot cuisine, wine and pottery. Even though I attended the event under the auspices of Cyprus Gourmet and The Financial Mirror, I managed to squeak in a very general wine-related question for the benefit of the blog.

What do you think about Cypriot wine? Any favorites?

(Paraphrased response since I am technologically inept and have not yet figured out how to use a digital recorder for my interviews. Yes, you can refer to me as obese obsolete.)

Tonia is quite proud of "how far Cypriot wines have come along." Despite not being very well-versed in the art of wine, she believes "they have definitely turned a corner." Lessons have been learned as local oenologists are now studying more, pushing their products onto the market and developing greater appreciation for indigenous varietals such as Xynisteri and Maratheftiko. Tonia does however criticize many locals for preferring French, Spanish or Italian wines; according to her, the national wine industry "cannot go forward unless Cypriots buy their own wines."

Currently, Tonia is obsessed with the 2010 Aes Ambelis and Zambartas Roses. She also enjoys a chilled glass of Vassilikon's Agios Onoufrios red blend and was recently surprised to learn about Lambouri Winery's Ya'in Kafrisin kosher red wine, which makes an appearance in the Torah.

For much more on Tonia, check out my full article in the The Financial Mirror, August 10 - 23, 2011.

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