Sine Qua Non White Wines
Kolibri – With a deep gold hue, the honeysuckle, floral, peach, vanilla and petrol nose opens to a full bodied, robust, sweet, spicy, cantaloupe and petrol flavored wine. This is a blend of 69% Roussanne and 31% Viognier. This wine is not for everyone, but if you like a full throttle style of white Rhone, it could be up your alley. 94 Pts
Petition – Produced from a blend of Viognier, Roussanne, and 30% Chardonnay from two vineyard sources, Alban and Eleven Confessions, the full bodied wine offers a powerful melange of fresh peach, hot stones, spice, earth and petrol flavors. 91
Body and Soul offers a boat load of spice, honey, bees wax, cinnamon and citrus aromas and flavors in this big, fat, juicy, concentrated wine. 92 Pts
Sine Qua Non Pinot Noir
Ox – Earth, spice, dark cherry, truffle scents make up the perfume. Medium bodied with some heat, the wine ends with a spicy, black cherry and cola sensation. The wine is slightly past full maturity and needs to be drunk up sooner than later. 90 Pts
Hollerin’ M – This is filled with ripe black cherry, spice, jammy berries and smoke aromas. Powerful, concentratedl and packed with ripe fruit, the wine finishes with a long sensation of jammy, red berries. This is not Burgundy, and it’s not trying to be Burgundy. But it’s a tasty Pinot Noir in the prime of its life. 94 Pts
Over and Out – The aptly named wine earned its moniker because it represented the final vintage of Pinot Noir produced by Manfred and Elaine Krankl. The perfume is filled with ripe black raspberries, cola, strawberry jam and earthy scents. The wine feels a little hot in the mouth before finishing with jammy berries and cola flavors. 91 Pts
Sine Qua Non Syrah and Grenache
Midnight Oil – Blueberry, blackberry, coffee, smoke, licorice and black cherry scents pop from the glass. This huge, mouth filling, powerful, plush textured wine is concentrated with layers of fat, juicy, ripe, jammy blackberries, blueberry and chocolate flavors. 96 Pts
Labels – A pungent perfume of black and blue fruit, earth, cappuccino, spice and caramel greet your nose. Full bodied, dense and rich, this powerful, fat, intense wine requires a few years before it fully opens. 95 Pts
Atlantis – This bottle was not a fair representation of what the wine has to offer. Decanted over 10 hours, the wine lost most of its aromatics and freshness. Like salt, you can always add more in later, but too much salt or air cannot be fixed. Few wines require 10 hours of air.
Poker Face – Boom! That’s what happens with the perfume the moment the wine leaps from the bottle. Espresso, blackberry, caramel, jam, chocolate, spice and blueberries fill the air. This thick, luxurious, full bodied, opulent wine coats your mouth and palate with velvety textured fruit. This wine is huge, but everything is in balance. The wine finishes with a pallet full of palate staining black and blue fruit. 99 Pts
Lil E – Named after Elaine Krankl opens with fresh coffee, blueberry pie, oak, and jammy black raspberries. Fat, rich and round, this mature, plump wine ends with a melange of ripe, black and red fruits 93 Pts
Heels over Head is the rarest Sine Qua Non wine after the Queen of Spades. The wine was a semi joint venture between Manfred Krankl and Dan Phillips of the Grateful Palate. Phillips purchased a barrel and raised it in 100% new American oak without the assistance of Krankel. Under 300 bottles were produced. The wine was sold to customers of The Grateful Palate.
If you’re a pickle fan, this wine is for you. It smells like an oak barrel of fresh, chocolate covered pickles. The wine is drying out and ends with a sour finish. There are wines to drink, wines to buy and wines to sell. At a value of over $1,000, this is a wine to sell!
This is funny! The last time I tasted this wine was about 6 years ago. I was positive I would never have the chance to taste it again. After posting this note, I just saw my score from 6 years ago. It was exactly the same! Great minds think alike… 80 Pts
Sine Qua Non Dessert wine
2002 Mr. K Strawman – This opens with an intense, sweet perfume filled with fresh picked apricots, brown sugar, honey, roasted peanuts and orangesicle Thick, dense and stuffed with as much sweet fruit as possible, it was too much of a good thing for me. With the texture of syrup feels fat and lazy on your palate. More acidity would have given it better lift. Fans of Essencia from Tokaji will love this wine more than I did. 90 Pts
Wine is made for sharing. All of us were grateful for the efforts of everyone at the dinner for sharing their Sine Qua Non bottlings. OK, the little dog might not of had as much fun as we did. On the other hand, you never know.
Hi Jeff, just did a double blind tasting with a local group of Washington State winemakers and had the ’01 Sine Qua Non Midnight Oil for first time and it was beat out by a ’06 Mark Ryan Wild Eyed Syrah from Red Mountain, Wa. I know totally different wines and not a fair comparison(Old world vs new world styles), but I went back and re-tasted the SQN and it has a unique complexity that I can see how folks might like it for that quality, but in all honesty it’s really not that great of a wine for all the hype. Also had the 2000 SQN In Flagrante in a comparative flight as well, and once again, it just didn’t live up to the hype. I’m not a hatter of cult wines, but when you do blind tastings it shows the wines for what they are,sometimes not that good ? As I stated at the beginning, it’s the first time I have had any of Manfred’s wines, so may not have been the right venue to fully appreciate the wines for what they are and it’s just my palate. My two cents. Thanks !! Max
Hi Max… The great thing about wine is, we can all try and decide for ouselves. For you, Sine Qua Non did not move you. No problem. I love the wines! They remain one of the few high-end Cult wines on my buy list. If you like, it’s always easier to chat, exchange views and have conversations in our Wine Talk forums. http://thewinecellarinsider.com/forums_new/forumdisplay.php?5-Wine-amp-Food-Talk
Jamet : 1999 and 2001.
I of course enjoyed La Turque 1989 and 1995.
And a wonderful Hermitage Delas Bessards 1990 last week near Chablis (I recommand the restaurant le pot d’étain, and its huge wine list).
I like Côte-Rotie Clusel-Roch too, and many others (the genuine empyreumatic freshness of syrah).
Côte-Rôtie Vernay Maison rouge 2004 (less oak, at least), Barge 2007 (Plessy, Combard, Côte Brune).
Laurent… We are on the same page. 89 La Turque and 90 Bessards are wonderul expressions of Northern Rhone wines. I have a few bottles left of each wine. I am also a fan of Clusel Roch. Their Grandes Places is sublime. But it’s hard to find, as they make so little wine. I have one bottle of 1990 remaining. If you’re ever out this way, I’d be happy tio share it with you.
Laurent… In Hermitage, I love Chave and the Chapoutier single vineyard wines. I am very happy Jaboulet La Chapelle is once again making great wine.
In Cote Rotie, of course all the Guigal Single Vineyards. Rostaing Cote Blonde, Delas, Gerin, Ogier, Bonnenfond, Jamet and a few others capture my interest.
Do you have favorite Northern Rhone vintages?
My preference is also for Jamet, Chave, Clape, … (we formerly had an australian/french contest).
Friends travelling and international merchants.
Other greats australian syrahs :
Kilikanoon Attunga : “1865” 2005 and also Parable 2005
Kalleske Johann Georg 2006
Ben Glaetzer Amon-Ra 2002
Torbreck Run Rig 1998
Penfolds Grange 1986 (some doubts about the 1997)
Disappointment with the famous Hill of Grace 97 (Henschke) and Astralis 1999 (Clarendon Hills).
Laurent… I seem to enjoy the expression of wine made from Syrah that’s grown in Cote Rotie and Hermitage the best. I’ve had most of the top wines from Australia, and I do not find the same level of complexity or elegance that I experience from France or California.
What a great experience! I have a Sine Qua Non t-shirt as well as the winery itself practically in my front yard but have yet to taste the wines…one day soon I will bang on the door until he lets me in!
Thanks for coming over and posting a comment. Sine Qua Non makes one of the world’s great wines. Sadly, because they produce so little wine, unless you are on the mailing list, they can be expensive. If you look around, when the wines are first released, they can be found for about the release price. On the other hand, I’m jealous. I don’t have the T-shirt!
Midnight oil 2001 (tasted twice) is a great syrah, able to challenge the best northern Rhônes stars.
Do you see much Sine Qua Non in Europe? I think this was served in Italy in a 2001 Syrah tasting. If I remember correctly, I brought the wine!