Showing all 9 results

  • Gravner Breg Bianco 2012

    £199.95

    “Roughly thirty-two hectares (of which eighteen are under vine) located in the high quality area of Oslavia in the Collio, a true if unofficial grand cru for Ribolla Gialla. The estate is arguably Italy’s best (by far) at making minimal intervention wines, with long macerations, was one of the first to turn to amphoras as an aging vessel. There is simply no comparison between Gravner’s wines (in matters of texture, cleanliness, precision and depth) and similarly made wines by practically anyone else in the region or the country, for that matter. That fact recognized, I want to stress that the talent level has always been extraordinary here, such that the wines have always been outstanding, and this was true even long ago when long macerations and amphoras weren’t an issue. Witness for example the magnificent 1983 Ribolla Gialla that I remember well from my university days in Rome. Today the estate is all about trying to re-establish a natural balance in its vineyards (for example by creating ponds on the property and by planting olive, wild apple trees and cypresses to create a habitat for different animals), moving away with as much technology and equipment and utensils as possible, such as barriques. Over the years the estate has also moved away from a lot of the different varieties it had planted, so there are no more Chardonnay, Merlot and Pinot Grigio wines produced, for example. The Ribolla Gialla wines age extremely well and though you have to like white wines being treated as reds, it’s hard to argue with their quality. Even more impressive is the Rosso Breg, made with Pignolo (the only red grape left on the property), a variety that gives “tough tannins” a whole new meaning, yet Gravner’s version is remarkably complex and smooth.”

    Ian D’Agata, Vinous (05/18)

    In Stock

  • Gravner Breg Rosso 2007

    £199.95

    “The 2007 Vino Rosso Breg, a varietal Pignolo, wafts up dusty, moody and dark in the glass, lifted by notes of crushed rose petals that give way to dried cherries, worn leather and hints of cumin. It’s soft-textured upon entry, showing a pronounced twang of acidity with tart wild berry fruits and saturating chalky minerality. The 2007 possesses fantastic energy and depth, even as its grippy tannins take hold toward the close and beg for a stay in the cellar. If enjoying this today, make sure to have it alongside a meal. The 2007 is the current release of the Vino Rosso Breg. Drinking window: 2024-2034. 92 points

    It’s quite amazing, when dining in Italy, just how often a bottle of Gravner is being served to a group at a neighboring table. It seems like the Italians must be on to something because, here in the States, the work of Josko Gravner is seen by the majority as esoteric oddities, with all due respect, and only by a minority as the true treasures that they are. Granted, it can be subject to stylistic preferences; and let’s face it, “orange” wine isn’t for everyone, but there’s simply something about the wines of Gravner that transcends these categories. Today, Josko Gravner has chosen just two native varieties to place all of his attention on, Ribolla Gialla, labeled as Ribolla, and Pignolo, labeled as Rosso Breg. The process that he has perfected over time remains in place, where the primary focus is in the vineyards. The Gravner vineyards span across the borders of Italy into Slovenia, with only small ravines and outcroppings of woods that separate the two countries. Within those vineyards, you’ll find man-made ponds (“a-la” Gianfranco Soldera), as well as trees and bird houses, as the family strives to maintain an equilibrium of biodiversity amongst the vines, while tending to them through biodynamic practices. Perfect ripeness, achieved through harvesting as late as possible, and often botrytis-affected grapes, is the key. What happens from there is all about patience and time. Within the Gravner winery, headed up by Josko and his daughter, Mateja, you’ll find the amphora chamber that has helped define a large part of this region over time. Buried beneath the ground are a large number of terracotta Georgian “qvevri”. These vessels become the new home of Gravner’s perfectly ripe fruit, as the grapes ferment, whole cluster, for up to six months within them. From there, the juice is pressed and then returned to the amphora for another six months, then followed by up to six years or more in large neutral oak barrels of various sizes–yes, six years; as I said, time and patience. When you consider this, it starts to make sense as to why the wines of Gravner are so unique, containing a depth of texture and richness that can sometimes seem like it might be too much, only to be perfectly balanced by the wine’s structure and acidity. And while Gravner has certainly inspired a generation of winemakers, very few can come close to the magic that is created in this vineyard and cellar. If you’re looking for an experience to test your imagination and your palate, or to understand the skin-contact wines of Friuli from their inception–this is the address to do it.”

    Eric Guido, Vinous (04/22)

    In Stock

  • Gravner Ribolla Gialla 2013

    £78.75

    “Sweetly scented and exotic in nature, the 2013 Ribolla Gialla Anfora is rich yet airy, with dusty dried flowers, raw honey, ground ginger and yellow apples forming its bouquet. This is broad and round on the palate with ripe yellow pit fruits and Indian spices, as a balancing bitter twang tugs at the cheeks, all motivated by bright acidity. The 2013 often seems more like juice than wine, tapering off long with a hint of butterscotch, yet not derived through wood, while leaving notes of cardamom and tropical melon to linger. What a beauty. Due to heavy rain in late summer, production of the Ribolla was down by around 30%, with only 18,000 bottles produced. Drinking window: 2022-2034. 96 points

    It’s quite amazing, when dining in Italy, just how often a bottle of Gravner is being served to a group at a neighboring table. It seems like the Italians must be on to something because, here in the States, the work of Josko Gravner is seen by the majority as esoteric oddities, with all due respect, and only by a minority as the true treasures that they are. Granted, it can be subject to stylistic preferences; and let’s face it, “orange” wine isn’t for everyone, but there’s simply something about the wines of Gravner that transcends these categories. Today, Josko Gravner has chosen just two native varieties to place all of his attention on, Ribolla Gialla, labeled as Ribolla, and Pignolo, labeled as Rosso Breg. The process that he has perfected over time remains in place, where the primary focus is in the vineyards. The Gravner vineyards span across the borders of Italy into Slovenia, with only small ravines and outcroppings of woods that separate the two countries. Within those vineyards, you’ll find man-made ponds (“a-la” Gianfranco Soldera), as well as trees and bird houses, as the family strives to maintain an equilibrium of biodiversity amongst the vines, while tending to them through biodynamic practices. Perfect ripeness, achieved through harvesting as late as possible, and often botrytis-affected grapes, is the key. What happens from there is all about patience and time. Within the Gravner winery, headed up by Josko and his daughter, Mateja, you’ll find the amphora chamber that has helped define a large part of this region over time. Buried beneath the ground are a large number of terracotta Georgian “qvevri”. These vessels become the new home of Gravner’s perfectly ripe fruit, as the grapes ferment, whole cluster, for up to six months within them. From there, the juice is pressed and then returned to the amphora for another six months, then followed by up to six years or more in large neutral oak barrels of various sizes–yes, six years; as I said, time and patience. When you consider this, it starts to make sense as to why the wines of Gravner are so unique, containing a depth of texture and richness that can sometimes seem like it might be too much, only to be perfectly balanced by the wine’s structure and acidity. And while Gravner has certainly inspired a generation of winemakers, very few can come close to the magic that is created in this vineyard and cellar. If you’re looking for an experience to test your imagination and your palate, or to understand the skin-contact wines of Friuli from their inception–this is the address to do it.”

    Eric Guido, Vinous (04/22)

    In Stock

  • Livio Felluga Illivio 2019

    £37.95

    Review to follow

    In Stock

  • Livio Felluga Terre Alte 2019

    £68.95

    “The 2019 Terre Alte Rosazzo captivates, as crushed stone and underbrush evolve into a pretty mix of lime-tinged granny smith apple and savory herbs. This is rich, almost glycerol-like in feel, yet with a core of zesty acidity and salty minerals that perfectly balances it all out. Tropical florals and hints of tangerine mix with candied citrus, young mango and an inner smokiness adding further intrigue, as this finishes with persistence and tension, just begging for a short stay in the cellar. Tasted twice, the 2019 is simply stunning and full of potential. The Terre Alte is a blend of Friulano, Sauvignon and Pinot Blanc. Drinking window: 2023-2028. 93+ points”

    Eric Guido, Vinous (04/22)

    In Stock

  • Ronchi di Cialla Ciallabianco 2017

    £22.99

    Review to follow

    In Stock

  • Ronchi di Cialla Ribolla Gialla 2021

    £19.95

    Ronchi di Cialla, one of Italy’s best wine estates, has long been under the radar, but also a fantastic source of exceptional wines made from the region’s native grapes. The Rapuzzi family deserves the historical credit of having saved (thanks also to the help of the Nonino distilling family), the Schioppettino grape variety from oblivion. The Verduzzo and the Picolit are also exceptional wines, and like all of this estate’s output very typical of the cool mesoclimate of the Cialla area, not far from Prepotto. The fresh Ribolla Gialla brims with early appeal and the Refosco del Peduncolo Rosso is also refined and ageworthy, and not to be missed.”

    Ian D’Agata, Vinous (05/18)

    In Stock

  • Ronchi di Cialla Schioppettino 2011

    £46.99

    Review to follow

    In Stock

  • Ronchi di Cialla Schioppettino 2016

    £38.99

    “Dark and inward, the 2016 Schioppettino di Cialla is heady with its spicy mix of rosebuds, wild strawberries, smoke and cracked pepper. This is soft and cool-toned in style, holding its power in reserve, with tart red and black berries tinged with saline-minerals that give way to pretty inner florals. Residual acids keep the expression fresh through the finale while remaining perfumed and lightly structured. This is a vertical and remarkably finessed expression of Schioppettino di Cialla that is currently showing very well, yet also with the capacity to mature for decades. Bravo. Drinking window: 2023-2036. 94+ points

    Cialla is located in the eastern reaches of Friuli Colli Orientali, yet it is quite unique from the surrounding areas, as valleys run deep between its forested higher elevations, and vineyards can be found like a patchwork strewn throughout. If there was only one producer that you could ever taste the wines of from this zone, it would have to be Ronchi di Cialla. Their winery sits atop a hill of vines, like a mirage in a desert. It was here that the now-deceased Paolo Rapuzzi and his wife, Dina, had the passion and insights to save the Schioppettino variety from near extinction, a story that my predecessor told very well in his article, “Ronchi di Cialla’s Schioppettino di Cialla: 1982-2010” in June of 2017. Along with saving Schioppettino, they also proved the importance of the variety, as today it is truly one of the most interesting and age-worthy reds being produced in Friuli. However, in my opinion, Ronchi di Cialla’s Schioppettino remains the best. While at the estate, I was able to taste with Ivan Rapuzzi, the current-generation winemaker, and taste both new vintages and old. One of the highlights of this property is their regular release of library wines, both red and white, as well as the reasonable prices attached to them. These wines mature amazingly well, evidenced by my experience with the 1996 and 1984 Schioppettino di Cialla, as well as the 1998 Ciallabianco (a blend of Ribolla Gialla, Picolit and Verduzzo). Ivan Rapuzzi runs the winery with his mother and brother, and the family has chosen to change nothing about the traditional wines of the estate, but to only add some fresher expressions to the lineup, such as the zesty Ciallarosso, a blend of Refosco dal Peduncolo Rosso and Schioppettino. This is not just a historic winery, but also a historic family. The wines that they are producing today deserve serious consideration.

    Eric Guido, Vinous (04/22)

    In Stock