98 Robert Parker's Wine Advocate - Read
The 2006 To the Rescue Roussanne Vin de Paille has 290 grams of residual sugar per liter. Despite its aging in 100% new oak, there is not a hint of wood to be found in the aromas or flavors. This remarkable sweet white exhibits abundant aromas of orange marmalade, rose petals, honeysuckle, brown sugar, and spice. It looks like 10W40 motor oil, but its ample acidity provides uplift and vibrancy to its enormously endowed, sweet personality. Who knows how long it will last, but it definitely has 15-20 years of longevity, and it may surprise us all by living for 40-50 years. Passing through what looks like a junkyard (or the first or second level of hell) to get to the warehouse of both bodily and spiritual pleasures called Sine Qua Non, is a hoot and a howl, but well worth it if you can somehow wrangle an appointment with the reclusive proprietor, Manfred Krankl. Tasting here is one of the highlights of my year, and all my expectations were satisfied if not eclipsed by what Krankl has made in 2007 and 2006. Oh, and there is one utterly perfect late-released 2005. Yields in 2007 were exceptionally low, with the Syrah averaging 1.5 to 2 tons of fruit per acre, Grenache 1.3 tons per acre, and the white grapes 1.28 tons of fruit per acre. Put another way, Krankl’s highest yields averaged a meager 1.05 to 1.55 pounds of fruit per vine. That in large part explains the compelling aromatics, texture, richness, and intensity of these wines. Add to that the compulsive viticultural work and fanatical attention to detail in the winery, and it’s no wonder Sine Qua Non remains one of California’s most remarkable reference points of world-class wines. The good news is that the first wine from the new home vineyard in Ventura County, the Cumulus Vineyard, has been produced. Moreover, the continued brilliance of the other estate vineyard in the Santa Rita Hills, 11 Confessions, is confirmed. Over the last few years I have not been able to taste through the Sine Qua Non wines without coming across one that merits a three-digit score. The final wines to be bottled under the “Mr. K.” moniker include the 2006 The Nobleman and 2006 The Strawman. As some readers may know, this partnership between the famed Austrian, Alois Kracher, and Manfred Krankl has finally come to an end because of the tragic death of Alois Kracher, who fell victim to pancreatic cancer at age 49. The Mr. K. offerings have been remarkable wines that showcased the talents of both of these great winemakers.
- WinemakerManfred Krankl
- Oak100% new oak
- Residual Sugar290 grams/L
Sine Qua Non Roussanne To The Rescue 2006 (half bottle 375mL)
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About the Producer
Sine Qua Non has become an international sensation and one of the most collected California wines. Manfred Krankl started with a vision and a whole lot of passion and turned it into an incredible success. They now own four rather diverse Estate vineyards: Eleven Confessions in Santa Rita Hills, Cumulus in south Santa Barbara, The Third Twin in Los Alamos and Molly Aida in Tepusquet Canyon planted to head trained Mourvedre. Without a doubt SQN produces some of the most interesting wines we taste every year.