Josko Gravner Venezia Giulia Anfora Ribolla Gialla 2014  Front Label
Josko Gravner Venezia Giulia Anfora Ribolla Gialla 2014  Front LabelJosko Gravner Venezia Giulia Anfora Ribolla Gialla 2014  Front Bottle Shot

Josko Gravner Venezia Giulia Anfora Ribolla Gialla 2014

  • WS95
750ML / 0% ABV
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750ML / 0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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WS 95
Wine Spectator

This is a brightly golden, burnished brass hue, with a fragrant supernova of heather, milled white pepper, fennel seed and crushed pine aromatics exploding from the glass. It's firm and chalky in texture on the palate, layering sleek acidity with flavors of dried raspberry and white cherry, iodine, almond skin, chopped rosemary and iron that slowly expand through the long, concentrated finish. Distinctive, this is a gorgeous example of skin contact wine. Drink now.

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Josko Gravner

Josko Gravner

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Josko Gravner, Italy
“Orange wine” is a bona fide category now, one whose amber-colored tentacles have crept further and further into the mainstream over the past several years. Still, amidst an ocean of skin-contact white wines from every corner of the globe, those of Josko Gravner stand apart. His resurrection of this ancient practice two decades ago was certainly not an inevitability, especially considering technology’s ever-increasing role in the winemaking process, and it took someone of Gravner’s vision and tenacity to forge such a path for himself. A highly acclaimed producer of technical, stylish Friulian wines early in his career, Josko underwent a crisis of faith in the late 1990s, realizing that he simply didn’t enjoy drinking his own wine anymore. The story of his perilous journey into the Caucasus mountains and his life-altering encounters with ancient Georgian viticultural traditions has been well-told by now, but—in the wine world of 2018, where one can easily mail-order a clay jar or two to indulge in a bit of experimental fun—Josko’s overhaul of his entire methodology stands out even more sharply for its wholeheartedness and fearlessness. He knew he would alienate people, but he would at last be able to make wines that had meaning for him beyond their commercial success. While his radical shift indeed confused many at the time, Josko ended up inspiring a legion of growers to abandon the trappings of modern technical winemaking in favor of something more visceral and ancient in spirit, and his arrestingly atavistic wines connected deeply with consumers who yearned for an experience beyond the ordinary. Even today, when the flavors and textures of skin-contact white wines have become much more broadly familiar, Gravner’s achieve a level of expressive power few wines on earth can approach, and he is justly revered for his efforts. While there are plenty of other growers today using skin contact, burying amphorae, and otherwise reducing their reliance on technology, nobody has combined those practices with such a trustingly extended elevage as Josko. His wines enter the market fully grown, powerful in their seamlessness, and with a layered depth only age can expose.
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The source of some of Italy’s best and most distinctive white wines, Friuli-Venezia Giulia is where Italian, Germanic and Slavic cultures converge. The styles of wines produced in this region of Italy's far north-east reflect this merging of cultures. Often shortened to just “Friuli,” the area is divided into many distinct subzones, including Friuli Grave, Colli Orientali del Friuli, Collio Goriziano and Carso. The flat valley of Friuli Grave is responsible for a large proportion of the region’s wine production, particularly the approachable Pinot grigio and the popular Prosecco. The best vineyard locations are often on hillsides, as in Colli Orientali del Friuli or Collio. In general, Friuli boasts an ideal climate for viticulture, with warm sunny days and chilly nights, which allow grapes to ripen slowly and evenly.

In Colli Orientali, the specialty is crisp, flavorful white wine made from indigenous varieities like Friulano (formerly known as Tocai Friulano), Ribolla gialla and Malvasia Istriana.

Red wines, though far less common here, can be quite good, especially when made from the deeply colored, rustic Refosco variety. In Collio Goriziano, which abutts Slovenia, many of the same varieties are planted. International varieties like Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc are also common, but they tend to be Loire-like in style with herbaceous character and mellow tannins. Carso’s star grape is the red Teranno, notable for being rich in iron content and historically consumed for health purposes. It has an earthy, meaty profile and is often confused with the distinct variety Refosco.

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There are hundreds of white grape varieties grown throughout the world. Some are indigenous specialties capable of producing excellent single varietal wines. Each has its own distinct viticultural characteristics, as well as aroma and flavor profiles.

RWMGVRG141_2014 Item# 1197851

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