This exceptional and effortlessly easy-to-play mandolin, made by Rolfe Gerhardt South Thomaston, ME, is similar in appearance to his Phoenix NeoClassical in that it has neither top nor back binding and utilizes (to extremely good effect) Thomastic Enfield flatwound strings which are made in Vienna, Austria. It has the two-part adjustable bridge in which the bridge base is made from “Timeless Timbre” or “Old Wood” or maybe “Sinker Maple” – wood that was submerged in an extremely deep river under tremendous pressure for over a hundred years, or so says the legend. When recovered, this material is extremely hard and dense and so sound travels through it considerably faster than it does though ordinary maple as one might find being used on his or her mother’s kitchen cutting board. This mandolin may show infinitely small signs of having been played, tiny dings and minor marks, but nothing jumps out as being what one would call “normal wear.”
This mandolin is called The Europa because the top is German spruce or its European equivalent, while the back and sides are European maple. This maple is not highly figured – there is a small amount of tiger stripe on the one-piece carved back and considerably more on the sides and the back of the one piece neck. The original short run of Europa models had no sound port on the upper bass side – this feature was added to the Europa II. Something else we’ve noticed is that the top and the back are beveled on their edges to allow for player comfort. Its design includes twin sweeping (even fanciful) f-holes, a carved ebony right angle tailpiece held in place by three black chrome plated flush screws, black buttoned, gold-plated, open-geared four-on-a-plate tuners and a glossy black headstock overlay in what appears to be ebony that features a Phoenix with its wings outstretched as if to greet the dawn after rising from the ashes, as Phoenixes like to do. The matte ebony 24-fret (two full octaves) fingerboard is inlaid with extremely tiny dotmarkers at frets 5, 7, 10, 12, and 15. The semi-triangular pickguard, which is ebony matte finish, is attached to the treble lower side of the fretboard; the manufacturer provides a black chrome plated strap button on the bass cutaway and at the bottom side.
We wish to introduce you to one of the most beautiful, most elegant sounding and most perfectly executed modern mandolins of our time. Rolfe Gerhardt is as dedicated to the quest for perfection in a one-builder, two-point instrument as Steve Jobs was with his designs of nearly magical electronic devices that have a uniquely palliative affect on our anxiety-laden lives, from which the only true respite may be music. NOW ON SALE! WAS $3969 BUT NOW ON SALE FOR: