Soliste

Owner(s) Claude Koeberle, Elisabeth Koeberle, Beth Plumley, Donald Plumley
Web site www.soliste.com
 
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Soliste

Soliste is a collaboration between long time friends Elisabeth and Claude Koeberle and Beth and Donald Plumley. The name, Soliste, is derived from the special barrel or "soliste" that Burgundian winemakers reserve for their family and friends. Koeberle is completely and utterly infatuated with Burgundies. The winery's Pinot Noirs are sourced from selected terroirs in the Sonoma Coast. The wines are old world in style ("Chambolle Musigny in the New World").

Beginning in 2010, Soliste began production of two different lots of Chardonnay, one aged in French oak and one in concrete eggs.

Soliste is sold through a mailing list and has distribution in many fine restaurants in California, Texas and New York.

Articles About Soliste

2014 California Pinot Noir First Team All-Americans (10.2 12/22/2014)
2014 California Pinot Noir Honorable Mention All-Americans (10.2 12/22/2014)
2015 California Pinot Noir Honorable Mention All-Americans (10.23 12/27/2015)
2015 California Pinot Noir Second Team All-Americans (10.23 12/27/2015)
Expensive & Allocated Crimson Liquid: Are Cult Pinot Noirs Worth It? (10.32 6/18/2016)
In Pursuit of Balance: A Discriminating Goal (9.20 2/26/2013)
On the Pinot Trail: Soliste (10.35 8/16/2016)
Part IV: Tasting Pinot Noir from the Fort Ross-Seaview AVA (9.28 8/14/2013)
Pigs & Pinot Orange County (10.6 3/15/2015)
Pinot Briefs (9.31 10/11/2013)
Pinot Briefs (9.39 3/29/2014)
Pinot Noir Rosé is REAL Wine...Honestly (10.29 4/22/2016)
Recent Sips of Pinot Noir (9.48 10/6/2014)
Recently Tasted California Pinot Noir: The Bar Keeps Moving Higher (10.20 11/5/2015)
Rosé and Chardonnay: Recently Sampled Wines (9.24 5/5/2013)
Sips of Recently Tasted California Chardonnay (9.41 5/15/2014)
Sips of Recently Tasted California Pinot Noir (9.50 11/21/2014)
Sips of Recently Tasted California Pinot Noir & Chardonnay & Outliers (9.43 7/19/2014)
Sips of Recently Tasted Pinot Noir (10.3 1/22/2015)
Small Sips of Pinot (8.12 3/11/2010)
Soliste: A Renowned Chef with Roots in Burgundy Succeeds with Wine (9.21 3/23/2013)
Soliste: The PinotFile Winery of the Year (9.35 12/30/2013)
Spring is Time for Pinot Noir Rosé (9.41 5/15/2014)
Update on Happenings at Soliste (10.14 7/12/2015)

Reviewed Wines

2015 Soliste Soleil Rouge Sonoma Coast Rosé de Pinot Noir

13.2% alc., 148 cases, $22. 43% 12-hour skin contact, 85% whole cluster press, 4.5 months in neutral French oak barrels. · Pale pinkish orange color in the glass. Lovely aromas of strawberry, cherry, pink grapefruit, rose petal and herbs replicated in the flavors in a vibrant, mouthwatering style that finishes with a welcome cut of steely acidity. Score: 90. Reviewed May 6, 2016 ARTICLE »

2015 Soliste Soleil Rouge Sonoma Coast Rosé de Pinot Noir

13.2% alc., 148 cases, $22. A serious offering in the Provence style. Primarily sourced from La Cruz Vineyard. 43% 12 hour skin contact, 85% whole cluster pressed, aged 4.5 months in neutral French oak barrels.

Note: I also tasted the 2014 vintage of this wine demonstrating that serious rosé can improve with some bottle age contrary to what many wine drinkers believe. The 2014 Rosé de Pinot Noir was even better, less fruit driven, but more complexity and tertiary character. Buy a few bottles of the 2015 Rosé and keep some in your cellar for a year or two to see what I mean. Best when chilled. · Moderate salmon color in the glass. Inviting aromas of strawberry, cherry, dried rose petal and herbs. Crisp and vibrant on the palate, with plenty of strawberry, blood orange and tangerine flavors that linger on the clean finish Score: 90. Reviewed August 17, 2016 ARTICLE »

2014 Soliste Lune et Soleil Lake County Sauvignon Blanc

12.4% alc., 836 cases, $25. Whole cluster pressed, aged 4.5 months in 600L French oak barriques. · Pale golden straw color in the glass. A very generous wine replete with aromas and flavors of fresh citrus, melon, stone fruits and tropical fruits, finishing with a vibrant note of grapefruit and lime. Score: 89. Reviewed August 17, 2016 ARTICLE »

2013 Soliste Extravagant Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

13.2% alc., 23 cases, $100. Very best grapes selected through multiple passes at harvest. 50% whole cluster fermentation. Aged 16 months in a French oak barrel from Tonnellerie Rousseau. MonoClone®: single vineyard, single clone, single barrel source. · Moderately light reddish purple color in the glass. Intoxicating aromas of cherry, wild strawberry and exotic spices. Suave and sexy, with mid weighted flavors of black cherry and whole cluster driven hints of pine sap, root beer, spice and edible rose. Eloquent in style with impeccable balance, the wine offered gossamer tannins, and a spice-fueled finish that was revelatory. I relished the whole cluster integration in this wine as well as its acidity that can enable many food matches. When tasted the following day, I was still “ga-ga” over this wine. This wine shows what Pinot Noir can offer when a dedicated vintner commits to meticulous viticulture and vinification techniques based on a fanatical devotion to Pinot Noir. Score: 97. Reviewed June 18, 2016 ARTICLE »

2013 Soliste L’Ermite Rouge Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

13.7% alc., 23 cases, $100. 50% whole cluster fermentation. Aged 22 months in a French oak barrel from Tonnellerie Rousseau. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Deeply perfumed with both fruity and savory aromas of cherry, spice, wine cave and stalky stem. A little more riper fruited than most Soliste Pinot Noir bottlings, yet highly engaging with mid weight racy flavors of cherry, marionberry and spice. Fine-grain tannins, impeccable balance, and a long finish suggest a Chambertain character. Score: 93. Reviewed June 18, 2016 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste Nouveau Monde Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

13.1% alc., 117 cases, $Not released. MonoClone® Pommard from Keller Estate. Large percentage of whole cluster. · Moderately light reddish purple color in the glass. The whole cluster is evident in a good way on the nose and palate. Plenty of exotic spice and flowery bouquet compliments the dark cherry and black raspberry core of fruit which has remarkable length. Crisp, fresh and elegant, yet has a substantial tannic spine. The memorable finish is filled with exotic spice and is endlessly long and gracious. Score: 95. Reviewed July 19, 2014 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste Soleil Rouge Sonoma Coast Rosé de Pinot Noir

13.1% alc., 327 cases, $22. · Moderately light pink coral color in the glass. Aromas of dried cherries, alpine strawberries, melon, and herbs. Fresh flavors of strawberry, pink grapefruit, and orange zest, finishing with a note of tart grapefruit peel. Dry, and easy to like, with a freshness that is the calling card for rosé. Very good. Reviewed May 5, 2013 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste Soleil Rouge Sonoma Coast Rosé de Pinot Noir

13.1% alc., 327 cases, $22. · Moderate pinkish-orange color in the glass. Nicely perfumed with aromas of raspberry, strawberry, herbs and macaroon. Light and lively on the palate with red berry and blood orange flavors, finishing with high-wire, orange-infused acidity. The 2012 vintage of Soleil Rouge Rosé has just been released. Score: 89. Reviewed May 15, 2014 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste Soleil Sonoma Coast Rouge Rosé de Pinot Noir

13.1% alc., 327 cases, $22. · Moderately light pink coral color in the glass. Aromas of dried cherries, alpine strawberries, melon and herbs. Fresh flavors of strawberry, pink grapefruit and orange zest, finishing with a note of tart grapefruit peel. Dry and easy to like, with a freshness that is the calling card for fine Rosê. Score: 89. Reviewed December 30, 2013 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste L’Age D’Or Russian River Valley Chardonnay

13.1% alc., 298 cases, $50. The model for this wine is the Meursault 1er Cru Blagny from Francois and Antoine Jobard. · Light golden yellow color in the glass. The nose leads with scents of lemon oil, green apple, pear and white flower bouquet. Slightly creamy on the palate, with flavors of salted apple, brioche, lemon curd and baked apple. Impressive finesse yet satisfying drive. A Somm’s wine. Score: 90. Reviewed August 17, 2016 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste St. Andelain Lake County Sauvignon Blanc

12.9% alc., 212 cases, $55. Whole cluster pressed, aged in a cigar-shaped barrique, in homage to the late Didier Dagueneau. The wine comes from a single organically farmed vineyard. The grapes are de-stemmed, allowed 36 hours of skin contact and pressed to barrel where it is fermented and aged for 16 months. There is no malolactic fermentation to preserve acidity, vibrancy and length. · Pale golden yellow color in the glass. Clearly a special wine from the get-go. Aromas of salty sea breeze, lime and tropical fruits give it a fascinating start. Bright on the palate, with flavors of lime peel, gooseberry, apple and saline-infusion. The stunning finish has uncommon persistence for this varietal. Like no other. Score: 93. Reviewed August 17, 2016 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste Forêt Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 241 cases, $85. Clone 23 (Mariafeld) from Guidicci Vineyard in Occidental. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. The nose opens slowly to reveal glorious aromas of black cherry, black plum, sous-bois and spice. Quite bold for a Soliste Pinot Noir in this vintage, but still offering the Soliste style of elegance and intensity. Well-spiced black cherry, blackberry and black plum fruits flood the palate with goodness and hold on through a velvety, vibrant finish. Oak lends a gentle touch and the tannins are infused with maturity. Even better the following day from a previously opened and recorked bottle, this virile wine will age beautifully. Score: 94. Reviewed November 5, 2015 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste Forêt Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

14.0% alc., 241 cases, $85. Clone 23 (Mariafeld) from Guidicci Vineyard. 50% whole cluster. Aged 16 months in French oak, 0% new. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Engaging, exotic, even intoxicating fragrance of black cherry, spiced plum, rose petal, and forest floor. The nose defies adequate description. Both weight and weightlessness, with soft tannins and impeccable balance, featuring flavors of Bing cherry pie, baking spices, cardamom, and earthy herbs. The finish offers racy energy and fruit flavors that return in waves. The whole cluster inclusion heightens the texture. This wine is Pinot Noir heaven. Even better than when originally reviewed six months ago. Score: 95. Reviewed August 17, 2016 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste L’Espérance Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

13.1% alc., 241 cases, $85. Monoclone - 115. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Intense aromas of black cherry, black raspberry, loamy soil, baking spice and iron, building in expression with time in the glass. Silky soft and feminine in character, with layers of black cherry and black raspberry fruits touched by an array of savory herbs and a floral accent. The wine fills the mouth with pleasure that carries over to the long and expansive finish. The wine has a racy energy that primes the palate for more. Even better the following day from a previously opened and recorked bottle with aromatics that leap from the glass. Score: 92-93. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste L’Espérance Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

13.1% alc., 241 cases, $85. Clone 115. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Streaming aromas of darker stone fruits, spice and graphite. Quite charming, with an ephemeral quality, yet demands attention for its display of intensely flavored black cherry and black raspberry fruits, energized by racy acidity. A more generous offering that is reflective of the vintage. Score: 93. Reviewed August 17, 2016 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste Barrique 9 Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.9% alc., 23 cases, $100. Single vineyard, single clone, one barrel. From the Guidici Vineyard (the source of Soliste's Forêt bottling), this barrel stood out from the others that went into the Forêt. Hand bottled into unique Burgundy bottles, then hand waxed. · Moderately light red cherry color in the glass. Plenty to like about this wine with hi-tone aromas of cherry, spice box, sous-bois and buttery oak. Light to mid weight flavors of cherry and strawberry with elegance to spare. Seamless and demure with supple tannins and harmonious acidity. Very Chambolle-Musigny in character with a charming delicacy that seduces rather than imposes its will. This wine will be fascinating to follow over the ensuing years. Score: 93-94. Reviewed January 23, 2015 ARTICLE »

2012 Soliste L’Ambroisie Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

13.5% alc., 60 cases, $100. Tasted from a bottle that was opened 2 days prior at a luncheon. Clone “828.” 12% whole cluster. · There is plenty of drama and personality to this wine. The nose is replete with engaging aromas of wild cherry, exotic spices, forest floor and fresh rose petals. Flavors of black cherry and spice dance on the palate, framed by elegant, suave tannins (surprisingly reserved considering the high percentage of whole cluster). A charming, silken wine with impressive fruit intensity and length on the spice-filled finish. Impeccable balance and freshness after opened for 2 days predicts longevity. Score: 92-94. Reviewed October 6, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste Forét Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

This was a special treat offered in magnum format. · The nose was filled with aromas of whole cluster spice, potpourri, rose petal and pine sap. On the palate, the wine had taken on tertiary characters including mushroom, leather and earth bound flora. The dreamy texture was captivating. Nothing more exhilarating than a great wine aged in magnum. Score: 96. Reviewed August 17, 2016 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste Les Cailles Russian River Valley Chardonnay

13.6% alc., 69 cases, $50. Fermented in concrete eggs from Burgundy for 11 months, then transferred to 100% neutral oak and aged an additional 11 months. · Light straw yellow color in the glass. Lovely aromas of lemon, fresh pineapple, yellow peach and honeysuckle. Very bright in the mouth, with polished flavors of lemon curd, pear, and grapefruit. Crisp, with well integrated oak and a mouth watering finish. Score: 92. Reviewed May 15, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste L’Espérance Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.8% alc., 104 cases, $75. 100% clone 115 from Sonatera Vineyard. · Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. Wonderful aromatic presence with scents of black cherry, spice, and sous-bois. The nose really picks up intensity and interest over time in the glass. Enticing flavors of black cherry, spiced plum and black raspberry with an earthy, savory undertone. Very silky in the mouth with comforting elegance, a soft tannic backbone, and some finishing persistence. Better the following day from a previously opened and recorked bottle and still solid two days later. This wine will benefit from further cellaring but is hard to resist now. Drink the more forward 2011 L’Ambroise while this one mellows in the cellar. Score: 94. Reviewed December 30, 2013 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste L’Espérance Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.8% alc., 104 cases, $75. MonoClone® 115 from Sonatera Vineyard. · Moderately light reddish purple color in the glass. The nose is flamboyant over time in the glass offering aromas of dark cherries, cola and spice. I couldn’t take my nose out of the glass. This wine has a delicious dark cherry core underlain with tobacco oak and spice and seems to dance around in the glass with flavors coming and going to the party. A little more rugged and powerful than the Forét, but retains an easy-going finesse. Highly enjoyable. Score: 93. Reviewed July 19, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste Nouveau Monde Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.9% alc., 79 cases, $75. MonoClone® Pommard from Keller Estate. · Moderately light garnet color in the glass. Wonderful perfume of red berries, red cherries, baking spice and sandalwood. In the mouth, this wine makes you sit up and take notice. Delicious mix of fresh, vibrant wild cherry, raspberry and red plum fruits with a touch of exotic spice in the background. Seamless and caressing with supple tannins. Lighter in weight but highly flavorful with a very long and charming spiced-cherry finish. Currently in a state of near perfection. Score: 96. Reviewed July 19, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste Forét Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.9% alc., 149 cases, 149 cases, $85. Winner of 2014 Ultimate Sommelier Smackdown at Pigs and Pinot in Healdsburg. MonoClone® Mariafeld. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Lovely nose that is very sexy with seductive aromas of black cherry, dark red rose petal and spice. Soft, smooth and elegant on the palate with layers of flavor including black cherry, raspberry, rhubarb and spice. The subtle oak is working its magic. Finishes with a charge of bright cherry goodness. Reviewed July 19, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste Sonatera Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

13.0% alc., 123 cases, $85. Single vineyard and single clone = MonoClone®. 30% whole cluster, aged 16 months in 30% new French oak barrels. · Moderately light reddish purple color in the glass. Lovely perfume of wild cherry, Oriental spices and rose petal. Elegantly composed, yet highly flavorful, with a barrage of well-spiced dark cherry and pomegranate fruits. Score: 92. Reviewed August 17, 2016 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste L’Ambroise Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.8% alc., 29 cases, $100. MonoClone® “828” from Guidicci Vineyard. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Soaring aromas of cherry, raspberry preserves, and spice, picking up intensity over time in the glass. A harmonious wine with delicious Bing cherry fruit singing in tune with supportive suave tannins and bright acidity. Amazing expression of dark cherry fruit which saturates the mid palate and persists on the big finish. Delightful pinotosity. Score: 94. Reviewed July 19, 2014 ARTICLE »

2011 Soliste L’Ambroisie Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.8% alc., 29 cases, $100. 100% clone ”828” from Guidicci Vineyard (MonoClone®). One site, one clone, one cooperage. Rigorous cluster selection, very low yields, 30% whole cluster, aged 16 months in 20% new French oak barrels. · Moderately light reddish-purple color in the glass. This is a wine that benefits greatly from decanting now. Wonderful aromas of black cherries, forest floor and spice. Layered flavors of black cherries, plums and black raspberries with an earthy, savory and spicy undertone. A touch of smoky, vanillin oak adds interest. Surprisingly concentrated and robust at such a low alcohol percentage. Supple tannins make for a seductively silky mouth feel and bright acidity leaves the finish clean and vivid. Even better the next day from a previously opened and re-corked bottle and still pumping out pleasure two days later. Tremendous aging potential. A kick-ass California Pinot that is powerfully flavored, yet elegant. Score: 96. Reviewed December 30, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Soliste L’Age D’Or Russian River Valley Chardonnay

13.3% alc., 340 cases, $50. Aged 16 months in French oak. · Moderately pale golden yellow color in the glass. Lovely aromas of lemon pie filling, crisp apple and buttered brioche. Delicious palate presence with fresh and lively flavors of lemon, golden apple, baking spice. The mouthfeel is soft and dreamy in the mouth, the oak is perfectly integrated, and the fruit shows up for an encore on the juicy finish. Conjures a white burgundy with the fat middle palate of Russian River Valley. Reviewed July 19, 2014 ARTICLE »

2010 Soliste Forêt Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 149 cases, $85. Clone 23 (Mariafeld). Mariafeld clone came to the US from the government agriculture research station in Wädenswil, Switzerland in 1966. Infrequently bottled as a stand-alone clone. From Guidicci Vineyard in Occidental. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Very clean, bright and fresh aromas of black cherries and potpourri. The wine delivers a delicious mouthful of dark berry and black cherry fruit, expanding on the palate with nuance and class, and finishes with a statement. A subtle cola and earthy accent add interest. Juicy, with soft tannins. When tasted a day after opening and re-corked the, wine was still pumping out Pinot goodness. Reviewed March 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Soliste Forêt Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

14.1% alc., 149 cases, $85. Clone 23 (Mariafeld) from Guidicci Vineyard near Occidental. · Medium reddish-purple color in the glass. Very clean, bright and fresh aromas of black cherries and potpourri. The wine delivers a delicious mouthful of dark berry and black cherry fruits, expanding on the palate with nuance and class, finishing with a statement. A subtle cola and earthy accent adds interest. Juicy, with soft tannins. When tasted a day after opening and re-corked, the wine was still pumping out Pinot goodness. Score: 95. Reviewed December 30, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Soliste L’Ambroisie Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.8% alc., 23 cases, $100 (sold out). Clone 828 from Guidicci Vineyard in Occidental. Tasted a day after opening from a re-corked bottle. · Moderate reddish-purple color in the glass. Red fruits are featured in the nose and on the palate. An acid-driven wine that is more austere than the Soliste Forêt with less ripe fruit flavors including red cherry and cranberry, finishing with a cleansing riff of citrus. A very pretty, elegant wine with gossamer tannins. If the Forêt is akin to a leather jacket, this wine is more like a silk shirt. Very good. Reviewed March 23, 2013 ARTICLE »

2010 Soliste L’Ambroisie Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

12.8% alc., 23 cases, $100 (sold out). Clone “828” from Guidicci Vineyrd near Occidental. · Moderate reddish-purple color in the glass. Red fruits are featured in the nose and on the palate. An acid-driven wine that is somewhat austere with flavors of red cherry and cranberry, finishing with a cleansing riff of citrus. A very pretty, elegant wine with gossamer tannins. If the Forêt is akin to a leather jacket, this wine is more like a silk shirt. Score: 89. Reviewed December 30, 2013 ARTICLE »

2007 Soliste Sonatera Vineyard T Block Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir

13.6% alc., 323 cases, $68. A collaboration between long time friends Elisabeth and Claude Koeberle and Beth and Donald Plumley. The name, Soliste, is derived from the special barrel or soliste that Burgundian winemakers reserve for their family and friends. Sonatera Vineyard is located on a ridge near the cooler part of Sebastopol. Clones 115 and 777 planted in Goldridge sandy loam. · Darkly colored. The nose is dominated by savory spices including cardamon. The thick plum and blackberry fruit is set off by notes of anise, vanillin and cream. Very silky in the mouth with subtle fine tannins. Good. Reviewed March 11, 2010 ARTICLE »



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