Wine Enthusiast 94 points - When it comes to sheer deliciousness, this wine nails it. Comprised of 99% Cabernet Sauvig-non, with just a drop of Petit Verdot, it offers wave after- heady wave of black currants and blackberry jam. What truly distinguishes the wine is the overall balance. The tannins are beautiful, the acidity fine and the oak perfectly integrated.
Altvs is a project begun with the 2005 vintage at Merus winery in the Napa Valley. The idea: to produce hand crafted, small lot Cabernet Sauvignon based wines that celebrate the hedonistic qualities of lushness, density and ripeness while remaining true to the intensity and power of modern day Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. In a very short time since its initial release, Altvs has captured the imagination of an international audience, garnering critical acclaim through the world of fine wine.
|For centuries, passing down through I donít know how many generations, the Kuntz family, my family, has been living in Lieser, a town one bend upriver from Bernkastel in the heart of the Mosel valley, tending the Lieser vineyards and making wine there. Yet my ancestors were also deeply involved in other vital activities of the wine business. They made casks and barrels, oversaw the filtration and bottling of wines for other wine growers, and they also acted as wine merchants. I spent a good deal of my childhood working in the vineyards. A little too much time perhaps...? Thatís what I really felt at times, and so it probably didnít come as a surprise that when it came to choosing a place to study I settled as far away from the vineyards as possible, in Wuppertal, a town about forty miles north of Cologne.
Actually, it only seemed that I had left the vines behind for, ironically, in 1981, to help finance my studies in business administration, I opened a wine shop. It was a natural choice. I started by selling wines from my parentsí vineyards, but soon I had to buy Riesling wines from other producers to meet the growing demand. But that didnít quite solve the problem, either. My standards for what qualified as a good wine had either become too high or the quality of the wine I was buying had much diminished. I had a real problem. So I took heart and said to myself: I can do better than this!
And thatís how I started making wines of my own.