Katsunuma Jyozo Winery was established by the Aruga family in 1937 in the village of Katsunuma, in the Yamanashi prefecture, and they have been cultivating grapes and producing wine for three generations. They own 5 ha of vines, and source from another 25ha in the local region. Over 70% of the grapes they harvest are Koshu, an indigenous Japanese grape variety that has been grown in the region for over 1300 years.
Koshu is a white wine variety, and we have decided at this stage to just focus on importing wines made from this variety. The wines from Katsunuma Jyozo are extremely sought after in Japan, and are considered by many as one of the best producers of the Koshu variety. As a result stock availability is limited, and we were only able to source very small quantities of the 2014 vintage, but hope these allocations will increase going forward.
Katsunuma have created a selection of wines under the names ‘Aruga Branca’ and ‘Arugano’ which focuses on wines produced from Koshu. For ‘Aruga Branca’ the fruit is sourced from the oldest vines in Katsunuma, whereas for the ‘Arugano’, the fruit is sourced from the Isehara vineyard, which is a relatively new region in Yamanashi and still quite limited in production, and Koshu wine from this area shows some different characters on the aroma, and palate.
The 2014 Aruga Branca ‘Clareza’ Koshu is 100% Koshu made using only free run juice, no oak and Sur Lie fermentation, and resting on lees for around 6 months. It represents a very pure expression of unoaked Koshu. On the nose it exhibits apples, some white pepper/cinnamon spice and lemon. It shows a mineral complexity. Firm acid, and moderate weight, with a salty tangy finish.
The 2014 Arugano ‘Bosque’ Koshu is 100% Koshu made using fruit sourced from younger vines on the famous Isehara vineyard. It is aromatic, intense with more tropical characters on the nose, such as passionfruit, and even grapefruit, with lovely complexity. Lovely linear palate, crisp acid and salty finish. Punchy, intense bouquet and linear finish, with wonderful purity and length.