Edi Simčič

Primorska - Slovenia

The Winery

When it comes to the wines of Edi and Aleks Simčič, several descriptors spring immediately to mind: unrivalled, world-class, controversial… and by all standards, unique. Unlike so many of the stainless-aged Italians, even the whites of Simčič are fermented and aged for long periods in oak, often earning comparisons to high-end French wine. Multiple critics rank the estate among the very best in Eastern Europe and, as humble as they are, their name is quite well known to all the top producers in next-door Friuli. In terms of low yields, no one has higher standards than Edi Simčič. Toward that end, Aleks and his family don’t even own a sorting table. Working as a team, grandfather Edi, son Aleks, and grandson Jure make 3 passes per varietal per harvest, selecting each individual berry through sunlight. It’s no wonder their wines average just 700 grams per vine - closer to a half-bottle per plant than one bottle!

Today, the family works side by side on 12 hectares of tiny, non-contiguous crus spread out over hillsides in the tuckaway villages of Vipolže, Kozana and Fojana. Altitude varies, going from 90 meters up to 300, and exposition runs from south to west. In the cellar, all wines are fermented and aged in French oak barriques – a minimum of 10 months for the whites, and up to 4 years for reds. Needless to say, keeping tabs on every barrel and every vintage is a monumental task! One of our favorite sights is Aleks in the cellar, displaying his enormous, handwritten spreadsheets used to track each barrel and its variations. Every time he shows us, Aleks breaks into a broad grin - somewhere in between the world’s most peaceful farmer and a mad scientist extraordinaire.

For those unfamiliar with the area, traveling to Slovenia can be a magical experience. Goriška Brda has a dreamy, timeless quality to it: hamlets are nestled into the green hillsides rising toward the Alps, creating a gorgeous, tiered landscape. Although further north, the quality of light is distinctly Mediterranean. Artists and artisans can be found everywhere, including keen-eyed, intelligent winemakers who are nonetheless down to earth, and world-class chefs in rustic settings. (With everything produced just a few paces away, the term “farm to table” scarcely begins to cover it.) Truly, this little corner of the world one is of EU’s best kept secrets.

Enologist
Aleks Simčič
Grapes Grown by Winery
Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay,
Furlanski Tokaj, Malvazija, Merlot,
Pinot Grigio, Rebula, Sauvignon Blanc
Vineyard Size
12.0 ha
Winemaker
Aleks Simcic
Winemaker Biography
Creating wines that challenge convention and boggle the senses, father and son Edi and Aleks Simcic are among the happiest, talented, and most intuitive winemakers we know. Their farm sits on land that once belonged to Italy, and they may draw upon the French example, but their style is all their own.
Winemaker Generation
2nd
AdriaticSea Austria Italy Hungary Croatia Bosnia &Herzegovina Nova Gorica Koper Slovenia Nova Gorica Koper

Chardonnay Riserva

One of the finest Chardonnays produced anywhere in the world, this classic from Simčič offers a profound array of sweet cream, peaches, citrus, and honeycomb, along with a full, lush volume in the mouth. Most wineries ferment in steel, then pass through oak, giving the wine barbed edges and an inelegant balance; Simčič ferments his wine in the barrel, offering a soft, velvety tannin that is a confident and generous.

Color
Deep, golden hue
Nose
Extremely complex, with elements of juicy, tropical fruit, quince, honeycomb, butter and smoke
Palate
Opulent and persistent, with a faraway hint of “salt” (not unlike Pouilly-Fuissé or even Meursault)
Finish
Long, savory, and smooth
Vineyard Location
Goriska Brda, Primorska
Vineyard Size
1.5 ha
Varietals List
100% Chardonnay
Farming Practices
Organically farmed (non-certified) including dry-farmed; grapes picked by hand
Elevation
110 m
Soils
Ponca (mineral-rich flysch also found in Friuli)
Maturation Summary
In French barrels for 10 months, in Steel 2 months and bottled 6 months
In Steel
2 months
Alcohol
13.0 %
Acidity
5.2 g/liter
Residual Sugar
1.3 g/liter
Annual Production
4,000 bottles

Duet Lex Red Blend

A nano-production Cab-Merlot blend of stunning power, Duet Lex is deeply complex and refined. Extremely low yields concentrate the tannins, along with rich layers of plum, dark tea, and wood smoke. A monumental achievement that has garnered exceptional ratings from (among others) Wine Enthusiast: “Lifted blackberry and cherry aromas meld into flavors of ripe black-fruit, violet and black peppercorn in this bold, beautiful Bordeaux-style blend. It’s richly concentrated, with vibrant acidity and lush, furry tannins.”

Color
Deep ruby, with tinges of garnet as wine ages
Nose
Ripe dark fruit, with hints of vanilla, spicy black pepper, and smoke
Palate
Full bodied, with grippy tannins and plenty of structure
Finish
Long-lasting, with complex fruit and sweet spices like cloves and nutmeg
Vineyard Location
Goriska Brda, Primorska
Vineyard Size
2 ha
Varietals List
80% Merlot
10% Cabernet
10% Cab Franc
Farming Practices
Organically farmed (non-certified) including dry-farmed; grapes picked by hand
Elevation
80 m
Soils
Ponca (mineral-rich flysch also found in Friuli)
Maturation Summary
In French barrels for 48 months, in Steel 2 months and bottled 6 months
In Steel
2 months
Alcohol
13.5 %
Acidity
5.7 g/liter
Residual Sugar
1.9 g/liter
Annual Production
7,000 bottles

Kolos Single Cru Cuvee

Rivalling Bordeaux’s highest champions, this flagship wine from Edi Simčič can only be described as transcendent. With each sip, the endless canopy of layers extends itself even further: pine oil, cherry liqueur, bilberry and dried blueberries, tea leaves, liquid smoke, cinnamon stick, fern leaf and a nuanced, dirt road minerality.... the list goes on and on! A tannic masterpiece, Kolos is Slovenian in its purest expression and not, in fact, Bordeaux! Only 3000 bottles made.

Color
Deep ruby
Nose
Opulent, yet fresh
Palate
Full-bodied and elegant, with multiple layers of dark, ripe fruit
Finish
Long, complex, and satisfying (increases with age)
Vineyard Location
Goriska Brda, Primorska
Vineyard Size
1.5 ha
Varietals List
80% Merlot
10% Cabernet Sauvignon
10% Cabernet Franc
Farming Practices
Organically farmed (non-certified) including dry-farmed; grapes picked by hand
Elevation
90 m
Soils
Ponca (mineral-rich flysch also found in Friuli)
Maturation Summary
In French barrels for 48 months, in Steel 2 months and bottled 6 months
In Steel
2 months
Alcohol
14.0 %
Acidity
5.8 g/liter
Residual Sugar
1.8 g/liter
Annual Production
3,000 bottles

Kozana Single Cru Chardonnay

This stunning, single-vineyard Chardonnay originates from the Simčič family’s highest altitude site. The wine’s sheer power and delineation reveal their decision to bottle this cru separately. Baffling complexity begins in the nose with white truffles, spiced gingerbread, toasted cardamom, marzipan, and sea brine... followed by a voluptuous palate of Meyer lemon, crème brûlée, golden apple, crushed limestone, and toasted almond that finishes with a saline spike. Absolutely glorious! ONLY 50 CASES MADE.

Color
Deep golden hue
Nose
An array of tropical fruits, orange peel, and fine toasty notes
Palate
Opulent, with a supple texture and hidden layers that dance on the tongue
Finish
Long and rewarding
Vineyard Location
Goriska Brda, Primorska
Vineyard Size
0.45 ha
Varietals List
100% Chardonnay
Farming Practices
Organically farmed (non-certified) including dry-farmed; grapes picked by hand
Elevation
110 m
Soils
Ponca (mineral-rich flysch also found in Friuli)
Maturation Summary
In French barrels for 10 months and bottled for 6-9 months
Alcohol
13.0 %
Acidity
5.6 g/liter
Residual Sugar
1.4 g/liter
Annual Production
300 bottles

Malvazija

Edi Simčič has achieved near legendary status as the standard-bearer for emerging-market wineries from the Old World. The work of Aleks Simčič, son of Edi and chief winemaker, is redefining what is possible and expected from Slovenia. Fermented in French oak, this spectacular Malvazija (bianca) is age-worthy for a decade. A rich, oily palate offers up layer upon layer of apricots, wildflowers, toasted honeycomb, juniper berry, and mint.

Color
Golden
Nose
Ripe apricots, acacia, dandelion flower, dried herbs and caramel
Palate
Full-bodied, with a rich, oily texture and well-structured acidity
Finish
Lingering and complex
Vineyard Location
Goriska Brda, Primorska
Vineyard Size
0.4 ha
Varietals List
100% Malvazija
Farming Practices
Organically farmed (non-certified) including dry-farmed; grapes picked by hand
Elevation
95 m
Soils
Ponca (mineral-rich flysch also found in Friuli)
Maturation Summary
In French barrels for 10 months, in Steel 2 months and bottled 6-9 months
In Steel
2 months
Alcohol
13.5 %
Acidity
5 g/liter
Residual Sugar
.9 g/liter
Annual Production
12,000 bottles