JULY 2015 NEWSLETTER

 


THIS MONTH'S SAMPLER:

The “Summer Breeze Sampler” White Wines from Iberia … 151.00

The case sampler consists of four bottles each of the following four wines:

  • 2014 Nortico, Alvarhino, Minho, Portugal: Lime peel, peach, apple, gravel and salty sea spray. (13.50/145.80)
  • 2014 Cain Feixes, Blanc Seleccio, Penedes, Spain: Chablis-like minerality, herbs, pears and sweet Meyer lemon with superb acidity to cool the brow. (13.50/145.80)
  • 2014 Mokoroa, Txakoli, Getariako Txakloina, Spain: Mouth-puckering lemon lime acidity and a touch of sea breeze. (14.99/161.89)

Wines may also be purchased individually

 

RED WINES

 

OREGON - RED

2013 Omero Cellars, Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley, Oregon (S) 18.99/205.09

Located in the prestigious Ribbon Ridge AVA, Omero Cellars is quickly establishing itself for its beautiful Pinot Noirs and Pinot Gris. A transparent medium ruby robe, Omero’s 2013 Willamette Valley Pinot soars with floral aromas of violets and orange blossoms complicated by suggestions of cinnamon, vanilla and sandalwood. On the palate, the wine’s fresh raspberry fruit expression meshes with plentiful, fine tannins and earthy suggestions of rhubarb, sassafras and vanilla. Bing cherries, tangy acidity and fine tannins frame the Omero’s core of sweet red fruit and keep the wine vibrant all the way through to its long raspberry-driven finish. Deft, lively and impeccably balanced, this terrific Willamette Valley value will serve you well as a midsummer red, or will repay two or three years’ ageing in your cool cellar. Pair with grilled salmon, roast chicken, pates, and earthy mushroom ragouts.

2011 Colene Clemens Vineyards, Pinot Noir, Margo, Chehelem Mountains, Oregon (S) 22.99/248.29

Located where the Chehalem Mountains converge with Ribbon Ridge, the family-owned Colene Clemens Vineyards crafts superb Pinot Noir that reflects the nuances of its geologically diverse estate. Colene Clemens’ Margo Pinot Noir, named for Colene’s great granddaughter, casts a lovely garnet robe from the glass followed by aromas of cranberries, sour cherries, cured meat, rose petals and earth. Round and showing lovely maturity on the palate, the Margo fuses tangy cherry fruit with smoky barrel tones and complex notes of leafy underbrush, mustard seed and potpourri. Brisk and lifted by an electric acid backbone, Colene Clemens’ Margo finishes long and complex with suggestions of red raspberries, earthy minerals and dusty cherry fruit. This is a lovely representation of the vibrant, red-fruited 2011 Oregon vintage. Enjoy now and over the coming three years with broiled salmon, roast chicken, seared ahi, coq au vin, grilled radicchio and light hors d’oeuvres.


FRANCE - RED

2014 Domaine du Cros/Philippe Teulier, Marcillac, Lo Sang del Pais, Auvergne, France 13.99/151.09

Always a unanimous staff favorite every year, this year’s Domaine de Cros Marcillac is bolder and deeper than ever! An isolated region located east of Cahors in France’s Massif Central, Marcillac is home to the wonderfully obscure grape Fer Servadou (or Mansois in local dialect). Fashioned exclusively from the Fer Servadou, the domaine’s humble French “country” wine shows an opaque plum-ruby in the glass followed by exotic aromas of Szechuan peppercorns, serrano peppers, herbs, black pepper and ferrous earth. Deep, soil-imbued and utterly delicious, the Lo Sang del Pais presents a suave, silky palate marked by notes of cinnamon, currants, blonde tobacco, cloves and agave. Fine dusty tannins transition the Pais to its long, soil-driven finish. Enjoy this beautiful and distinctive country wine now and over the next five years with sausages, burgers, grilled vegetables and cassoulet.

2012 J. L. Chave Selection, Cotes-du-Rhone, Mon Coeur, Rhone Valley, France (O) 19.99/215.89

The Chave Selection Mon Coeur, a blend of 40% Syrah and 60% Grenache, is the most expressive and immediately delicious rendition of the cuvee yet. Opaque black plum in the glass, the 2012 Mon Coeur explodes with classic Southern Rhone aromas of black cherries, cassis, oil-cured olives, black pepper and herbal garrigue. Broad and intense on the attack, the wine saturates the palate with bright herb, olive and pepper-infused cherry, plum and black currant fruit backed by soft tannins and hints of spicy cinnamon and black licorice. Notes of tobacco, cola and freshly cracked peppercorns join plentiful, fine tannins as the wine lingers on the palate. Chave’s Mon Coeur outperforms its appellation in the same way his Hermitage sets the standard for its. Enjoy now for its youthful vigor with full-bodied Southern French cuisine, and lay down a half case or more to allow the wine to mellow and flesh out over the coming decade. Fans of Chateauneuf, Gigondas and Rhone Valley owe it to themselves to experience this wine!

2013 Burle, Vacqueyras, Southern Rhone Valley, France 18.99/205.09

Burle’s newly-released Vacqueyras highlights the classic, savory nature of the 2013 vintage alongside the special rustic, southern warmth that defines the very best Vacqueyras. The wine opens with a dense black-plum color and a bouquet filled with notes of plum skin, licorice, kirsch, blood oranges, smoky cured meat, black pepper and garrigue. Deep, soulful expressions of boysenberries and black cherries are framed by chewy tannins and savory, saliva-inducing notes of eucalyptus, black pepper, lavender and juniper. Tarry black cherry fruit, black licorice and lovely bitter chocolate notes mark the wine’s long, palate-staining finish. As with the entire range of wines from the Burle portfolio, this 2013 Vacqueyras is traditionally crafted, old school, and an incredible value. Enjoy now or over the coming decade with roast leg of lamb, ratatouille, and recipes favoring rosemary and fresh garlic.

2009 Chateau du Courneau, Medoc, Bordeaux, France 13.50/145.80

This Medoc proves that authentic, satisfying red Bordeaux doesn’t have to break the bank. The Chateau du Courneau is small family estate situated on a privileged gravely knoll in the very north of the appellation. From the much lauded 2009 vintage, the Courneau Bordeaux reveals all the gravel, tobacco, herbal and cigar box characteristics that we so love in a fine Medoc. Suave and polished in the mouth, this blend of 50% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Petit Verdot delivers full-on waves of cassis, sour cherries, cedar and tobacco leaf. Long and satisfying on the finish, the wine lingers with complex notes of gravely soil, wild cherry and red plum fruit, and fine, savory tannins. This is fantastic, authentic Left Bank Bordeaux and a steal for its tariff. Buy by the case and serve now and over the coming seven years with rib roasts of beef, burgers, grilled lamb, roast duck and potatoes au gratin.

ITALY - RED

2013 Abbazia di Novacella, Schiava, Alto Adige, Italy 13.99/151.09

Schiava is a black grape grown traditionally in the Trentino and Alto Adige, and also known as Vernatsch and Trollinger in German-speaking areas. This 2013 Schiava from the Abbazia di Novacella monastery glows a light Pinot Noir/Poulsard-like pale cherry color from the glass followed by beguiling aromas of red currants, wild cherries and smoky minerals. Tart and vibrant on the palate, the Schiava bursts with expressions of spicy cherries, tangy red raspberries, preserved orange peel and alpine herbs. The Schiava finishes with brisk acidity and lip-dusting tannins, which deftly frame the wine’s gorgeous kernel of lively red fruit. Transparent and radiant with energy, the Abbazia di Novacella’s Schiava will take a light chill and prove a most versatile and food friendly summertime red. Enjoy this with clear broth soups, salumi, light chicken preparations, morel mushrooms, pizza, broiled salmon and seared ahi tuna. Fans of Eyrie’s Pinots, Poulsards and other light-colored reds owe it to themselves to try this beauty.

2012 Cascina Disa/Elio Sandri, Barbera d’Alba, Superiore, Piedmont, Italy (O)
17.99/194.29

This is old-school Barbera at its finest. In the hallowed hamlet of Perno in the Barolo’s prestigious Monforte d’Alba zone, Elio Sandri crafts traditional, long aged Barolos and this superb Barbera d’Alba. Opaque crimson-tinged ruby in the glass, Sandri’s Barbera needs a bit of air to fully reveal its kernel of red plum and sour cherry fruit accented by hints of tar, pencil lead and blond leather. Bright and lively on the palate, Sandri’s Barbera shows the varietal’s bristling acidic backbone, which serves to buoy the wine’s dense, sappy core of red fruit. Transparent and truly authentic, Sandri’s Barbera finishes with complex notes of mushroomy sotto bosco, leather, cola, cloves and ferrous minerals. Buy by the case and serve now and over the coming decade with risotto, tajarin, braised beef, burgers, grilled lamb and hearty vegetarian casseroles.

2013 Le Piane, Vino Rosso, Maggiorina, Boca, Piedmont, Italy 17.99/194.29

Le Piane’s Maggiorina is fantastic! The estate’s 2013 vino rosso is crafted from a field blend of mostly 40- to 100-year-old Nebbiolo, Croatina, Vespolina and nine other indigenous varieties; the vines are trained in the traditional “Maggiorina” system, where four vines grow upward in the four points of the compass to form a goblet. A light, transparent ruby color, the wine beguiles the senses with spicy, cinnamon-tinged pie cherry fruit complemented by notes of lavender, rose petals, geranium and smoky soil. Deft on the palate, the Maggiorina’s Nebbiolo component imbues just the right amount of tannins and grip to frame the wine’s bright, crunchy cherry-fruited core, while notes of smoky minerals, cherry blossoms, rose petals and bitter herbs serve to make the wine savory, delicious and impossible to resist. With its glacial purity, soil transparency and high altitude tension, this is an especially food-versatile red that can be enjoyed year round. Pair now and over the coming three years with all things Piemontese, especially egg-rich pasta dressed with long simmered sauces, charcoal grilled steaks, mild soft-rind cheeses, and rich potato recipes.

2011 Fattoria di Faltognano, Chianti, Riserva, Tuscany, Italy 13.99/151.09

“Much happiness comes to men who have the fortune to be born where wine is good,” wrote Leonardo da Vinci of his hometown, where generations of the Comparini Bardzky family have lovingly crafted wines since 1000 AD. Faltognano’s i Comparini’s blend of Sangiovese (80%), Canaiolo and Malvasia Nera explodes with a beautiful, translucent black cherry robe and soil-infused aromas of Bing cherries, licorice and crushed herbs. Fleshy and succulent, Faltognano’s reserva juxtaposes plump cherry and currant fruit with plentiful tannins and complex suggestions of mushroomy underbrush, smoky soil and medicinal herbs. Long and distinctive, the wine finishes suave and delicious – a food wine that begs for rustic Tuscan cuisine: grilled beef, hearty bean stews and pastas dressed with porcini mushrooms or a long-simmered ragù. Enjoy now and over the coming seven years.

WHITE WINES

FRANCE – WHITE

NV Kientzler, Edelzwicker, Alsace, France (1-liter) 11.99/129.49

Andre Kientzler and his sons are producing textbook, delicious, character-filled wines from the entire portfolio of Alsace’s noble varieties. Among his many offerings, we were especially thrilled with this delicious, bone-dry Edelzwicker (noble blend), which is just about the most perfect picnic bottle we’ve yet encountered. Pale green gold in the glass Kientzler’s Edelzwicker – a blend of Chasselas, Sylvaner and Auxerrois – casts captivating aromas of muskmelon, Meyer lemon zest, lime oil, stony minerals, rosewater and juniper berries. Fresh, zippy and brimming with energy, the wine invigorates the palate with white pepper, herbs and citrus fruit backed by suggestions of lemongrass, fennel and freshly grated ginger. We suggest that you make this your everyday white for pates, terrines, firm and washed rind cheeses, choucroute garni, and savory Alsatian and German cuisine. Insanely delicious, and packaged in a handy one-liter bottle to boot!

2014 Domaine Jean Vullien et Fils, Vin de Savoie-Montmelian, Savoie, France (S) 11.99/129.49

Fashioned exclusively from the indigenous Jacquere grape grown at nearly one thousand feet above sea level, this low alcohol refresher brings to mind crisp Alpine breezes and pure, cool mountain spring water. A lovely lemon-gold in the glass with green reflections, Vullien’s Montmelian presents an impressive bouquet of anise, honeysuckle blossoms and flinty minerals followed by a crisp, crunchy palate of gooseberries, quince, lemon balm and salty minerals. Dry and refreshing, this is simply a glorious summertime white and an outstanding choice to welcome guests to your next deck party or as a natural complement to white-fleshed fish dishes in a beurre blanc sauce, oysters, salads, fondue, and cheese plates featuring tomme de Savoie, young gruyere, and other semi-firm cow’s milk cheeses from the Jura, Savoie and Switzerland.

2013 Regis Minet, Pouilly Fume, Vieilles Vignes, Loire Valley, France (S) 18.99/205.09

Regis Minet’s classically styled, old-vine Pouilly Fume is a perennial staff favorite. A pale green tinted lemon-gold, Minet’s 2013 Pouilly Fume explodes from the glass with flint-infused aromas of lime zest, spearmint, white peppercorns, jalapeño jelly and Thai basil. Bristling acidity, hints of ginger, orange bitters and flinty, chalky minerals play on the palate alongside suggestions of gooseberry and lime fruit. Bitter herbs, basil and quinine mark the wine’s long, juicy finish, which leaves that special dusting of limestone minerals on the tongue and lips that we so adore. Minet’s intense, soil-driven Pouilly-Fume is drinking great now, but also has plenty of stuffing and structure to ensure further evolution. Pair now and over the coming three years with oysters, sauteed green vegetables, chevres, and freshwater fish preparations.
- A Kermit Lynch selection

2013 Drouhin-Vaudon, Chablis, Burgundy, France (B) 20.99/226.69

The Moulin de Vaudon, an eighteenth-century watermill on the Serein River, is headquarters for Joseph Drouhin’s Chablis endeavors. Drouhin-Vaudon’s biodynamic viticulture and masterful winemaking imbue the wines with impressive purity of fruit and authentic terroir expressions. Pale straw-gold in the glass, Drouhin-Vaudon’s 2013 Chablis casts zesty, citrus-infused Chablis limestone soil notes alongside hints of honeysuckle, lemongrass, iodine and flint. Brisk and energetic on the palate, fresh lemon juice and linden blossom expressions mingle with suggestions of smoky, flinty limestone soil, grated ginger and raw hazelnuts. Further waves of saline minerals segue the wine to its long finish that features added notes of unripe pineapple and lemon curd. Drouhin-Vaudon’s Chablis is drinking smashingly well at this early stage, but will easily reward three years’ patience in your cool cellar. Pair with all things seafood, vegetable souffles, mashed potatoes, light poultry and pork preparations.

2013 Domaine Sangouard-Guyot, Saint-Veran, Au Brule, Burgundy, France (S) 18.99/205.09

From a superb parcel renowned for its mineral and floral overtones, Pierre-Emmanuel Sangouard captures the full-bodied richness and nuttiness that marks only the finest Saint-Verans. A deep golden color in the glass, Sangouard’s Au Brule expresses its southern Burgundian origins with aromas of lemon curd, pate brisee, roasted almonds and toasted brioche. Initially rich on the palate, the wine employs its mineral undercurrents and brisk acidity to focus its sappy core of lemony old-vine Chardonnay fruit. Vinified in old, neutral barrels, the Au Brule’s smoky clay-limestone mineral expression shines on the brisk, long finish. It will wow as a welcome wine with hors d’oeuvres, and serve as a lovely foil for herb roasted chicken, trout amandine, chanterelles in a cream sauce, or blanquette de veau. The Au Brule will also reward several years of aging in your cool cellar with additional toasty brioche and roasted almond notes. This is superb, full-throttle white Burgundy and a screaming value!


ITALY – WHITE

2014 Suavia, Soave Classico, Veneto, Italy (S) 13.50/145.80

This is serious Soave from the historical heart of the appellation that oozes breed and class. The Tessari family’s 2014 Soave Classico, fashioned from 100% indigenous Garganega, shines with a lovely lemon-gold color, offering a dazzling bouquet of jasmine, almond blossoms, crushed stones and anise. Full-bodied and rich on the palate, the wine opens to reveal notes of Golden Delicious apples, Mirabelle plums, lemon oil and flinty volcanic soils. Clean and fresh on the back end, the Soave lingers on the palate while adding nuances of freshly cut fennel, star fruit and bitter almonds. Enjoy it now and over the coming two years with canapes, fresh goat cheeses, lightly sauced freshwater fish dishes and zucchini frittatas.

2012 Ronco Blanchis, Pinot Grigio, Collio, Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy 13.50/145.80

From high-altitude slopes in the prestigious Gorizia zone on Italy’s border with Slovenia, Ronco Blanchis is crafting exemplary wines from the classic varietals, Pinot Grigio, Tocai Friulano, Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay. The special terroir upon which the grapes are grown includes sunny, high-altitude slopes that are sheltered by the nearby Alps to allow for long ripening and insistent minerality. Ronco Blanchis’ Pinot Grigio casts a brilliant lemon-gold hue from the bowl followed by aromas of pear, yellow apples and chalky minerals. Full on the attack, but countered by riveting acidity and persistent minerality, the wine blossoms on the palate to reveal notes of Bartlett pears, grapefruit, menthol and bitter herbs. Juicy and brisk with abundant citric acidity, the wine shows the zesty, food-friendly nature of the Pinot Grigio grape lifted and amplified by the minerality of the vineyards’ soils. Enjoy this is gorgeous, textbook example of Pinot Grigio now and over the coming two years with golden trout, medium chevres, vegetable omelets and angel hair pasta dressed with lemon-cream sauce and plenty of fresh crabmeat.


SPAIN – WHITE

See: “Summer Breeze Sampler” above


ROSÉ WINES

FRANCE - ROSÉ

2014 Andre Dezat et Fils, Sancerre, Rose, Loire Valley, France 18.99/205.09

This is simply brilliant Sancerre rose and a rare treat at less than $20 a bottle. The legendary Andre Dezat and his two sons run this superb twenty-hectare domaine in the Sancerrois hamlet of Verdigny. Dezat’s rose – fashioned from Pinot Noir grown on Sancerre’s incomparable silex and caillottes soils – gleams from the glass with a brilliant orange-salmon robe followed by aromas of white chalky minerals, rhubarb, grapefruit skin and rose petals. Brisk acidity, crushed pink peppercorns and ineffable chalky soil notes marry on the palate alongside crunchy golden raspberry, cranberry and tart orange fruit. Juicy, yet brimming with electric energy, the Dezat Sancerre rose finishes clean, brisk and mouth-watering. Buy enough to get you through the coming year and enjoy this beauty by itself after a hard day’s work or pair it with crab, rare ahi, sashimi, sauteed summer squashes, fresh chevres and beef tartare.


LINER & ELSEN

2222 NW Quimby St.
Portland, OR 97210
800-903-9463
503-241-9463

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STORE HOURS:
Mon.-Sat. 10am - 6pm

CLOSED: Saturday, July 4th


FRIDAY TASTINGS:
First and third Friday
of the month
5:30-7:30 p.m. - Fee

July 3 - Wonderful white wines from Oregon to start your Independence Day weekend.

July 17 - A tasting of great Portuguese wines with Luis Seabra. Plus, decades of wines from Caves San Joao. (Details below.)

Aug. 7 - Superb white Burgundy from St. Aubin.



SATURDAY TASTINGS:

Weekly; Starts at
12 noon - No fee

July 4 - We are closed for Independence Day.

July 11 - From Italy: Suavia Soave Classico, Abbazia di Novacella Schiava, Ronco Blanchis Pinot Grigio, Elio Sandri Barbera d’Alba, Le Piane Maggiorina Vino Rosso, and Fattoria di Faltognano Chianti Riserva. Plus: Our “Summer Breeze” sampler, featuring wines from Iberia.

July 18 - From France: Andre Dezat Sancerre Rose, Dom. Jean Vullien Vin de Savoie-Montmelian, Dom. du Cros Marcillac, Chave Selection Cotes-du-Rhone Mon Coeur, Burle Vacqueyras, Drouhin-Vaudon Chablis, and Ch. du Courneau.

July 25 - Wines from here and there: Regis Minet Pouilly Fume, Kientzler Edelzwicker, Dom. Sangouard-Guyot Saint-Veran, Omero Cellars Pinot Noir, and Colene Clemens Vineyards Margo Pinot Noir.



SPECIAL EVENT AT L&E:

A Special L&E Friday
Tasting Event

Friday, July 17 5:30-7:30

Meet Luis Seabra, one of Portugal’s most talented winemakers. We will taste a superb selection of his Cru wines, which we think are “grand cru.”

Plus, we’ll sample four decades of Portuguese wines from Caves Sao Joao.

This is our regular Friday night tasting. No reservations needed. Fee: $20.

 

 


Shop Early!

We are closed on Saturday, July 4


 


B = biodynamic methods; CO = certified organic; O = organic; S = sustainably farmed


© Liner & Elsen, all rights reserved. Information and prices apply during the current month only. Wine availability and prices are subject to quantity on hand. We are not responsible for mispriced items in the newsletter.