Bordeaux & Bubbles
Today August 26 from 1:30 - 6:30
Come celebrate the end of August with us as we uncork two sparkling wines and two delicious red wines from Bordeaux.

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$11.99 BTL./$71.94 - SIX PACK

Located in close proximity to Pomerol and Saint-Emilion, the tiny and picturesque region of Fronsac is home to some real gems like this offering. Chateau Beausejour is one that I have been pining to work with for the last two years since initially tasting it in France. Those desires have now come to fruition and after a visit to the Chateau back in May, I came away even more impressed.

Made with the usual Bordeaux suspects and dating back to the 19th century, this red wine announces itself with frontal scents of blue fruits, subtle cocoa, mineral and mulled spices that carry over into a satisfying texture, chock full of flavor and with complexity usually reserved for its neighbors in more famous appellations. Black currants and earth tones come out on the succulent and archetypal right bank Bordeaux finish that has lace and elegance. A beautiful drop for 12 bucks, this wine is excellent to pair with duck, rib-eye steak slathered with shallots slow cooked in butter, mushroom pasta or a nicely ripened Camembert.

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[reg. $32.99]
SPECIAL $22.99 BTL./$137.94 SIX PACK

Founded in 1768 and from the Alt Penedes region in Catalonia (a reluctant part of Spain..MADRID SE CĀMA!!!) located just south of Barcelona, Huguet is most famous around here for their dry, and illuminating white wine but one of the real house treasures is their very Champagne inspired sparkling Cava.

60% Parellada, 20% Macabeo and 20% Pinot Noir. Aged at least 30 months before disgorgement (this particular cuvee was disgorged in 2015!) and one of the most impressive alternatives to Champagne. A spirited, yet cerebral nose of white chocolate, lemon rind, saline, almond, mineral and grilled hazelnut bread. Finely crafted with silky bubbles; beautifully balanced and harmonious. Crawls through the mouth and catapults to a long, pleasing extending finish. One of the finest Cavas produced and perfect for grilled shrimp or scallops wrapped in bacon.

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$26.99 BTL./$323.88 CASE

Pessac-Leognan is an appellation within the Graves region that is reserved for the top estates and best terroirs. In existence since 1780, Château Picque Caillou is located in a very respectable neighborhood that is situated in close proximity to 2 famed Graves Chateaux, Haut-Brion and Pape-Clement and it was quite a surprise to find a small amount of the vastly underrated 2008 available. This vintage is wildly undervalued, underrated and is a perfect table setter for 2009 and 2010.

At age 8, this Bordeaux is now starting to move into some nice secondary aromas and smooth its edges out. A real gentle soul of a wine with a very classic Graves/Pessac nose. Violets, strawberry, fine herbs and touches of graphite. After 5 minutes in the glass, the graphite moves to the background while espresso notes, adobe and Havanas come to the forefront. Exquisite in the mouth and very Bordeaux in stature filling the mouth with harmonious fruit and spiced earth following through to a seemingly airy finish. A deceptively structured wine, it is starting to open and will continue through to at least 2021+.

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[reg. $69.99]
SPECIAL $46.99 BTL./$281.94 SIX PACK

Founded in 1851, Champagne Charles Heidsieck has been a consistent name when it comes to quality Champagne and since the early 1990s, they have been producing bubbles that are on a level that when tasted will make any Champagne hound do backflips and cartwheels!

On offer at an excellent price point, the Brut Reserve is a classic blend of one-third each of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier & Chardonnay and aged 3+ years on the lees. The house style here is one of substance and in this particular cuvee, 40% of Reserve wines, many up to 10 years old, are what drives this intensely complex and flavorful Champagne. Richness, dimension, power and above all, silky, finesseful bubbles virtually glimmer from the glass. Brioche, honey, orange, chalk and nougat scents lead into a glorious, full texture with a seductive mousse and ample expansion all buffered by livewire aspects that culminate in a luxurious, long finish. If you love Champagne, you are going to want some of this one!

Italian wines from Montalcino, Puglia, Montepulciano, Barolo & more

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$13.99 BTL./$167.88 CASE

Last week it was a bonanza of stellar Italian wines presented to me, so this week’s musings are devoted to wines from The Boot.

A superb value wine from a historic and top Brunello di Montalcino producer that is an unabashed Tuscan guzzler. 85% Sangiovese and 15% Ciliegiolo, this wine is like a fine chef blending various spices, both traditional and exotic.

2013 a delicious, very well-balanced vintage in Southern Tuscany and this flavorful number reveals mouth-filling, yet smooth and abundant scents and flavors of wild cherry, cassis, sage and pepper. Lots of character and class, this wine is a great pasta wine. Enjoy it now and enjoy it often.

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$59.99 BTL./$719.88 CASE

The Spezieri is the opening act for the main event, Col D’Orcia’s outstanding 2006 Brunello di Montalcino. Count Francesco Marone Cinzano, whose family established and formerly owned Cinzano, the oldest vermouth-producing house in the world is now best known for Col d'Orcia in Montalcino, Tuscany where he controls a total of 370 acres of land, including over 260 acres of prime Brunello vineyards. In addition to Col d'Orcia, Count Cinzano also owns the Reserva de Caliboro estate in Chile's Maule Valley, a vineyard property he established in the 1990s.

Located south of the town of Montalcino in the hamlet of Sant' Angelo in Colle, Col D'Orcia has been an important and well-run Montalcino property for over 30 years. One of the great things that occurs at this estate is they will occasionally release library wines. 2006 is a monumental Brunello vintage and this 100% Sangiovese is quite the thrill ride at age 10. Graceful, multifaceted, very perfumy and for being large-scaled, truly maintains class and finesse. Red berry tones attack the palate; impressive persistence and penetrating concentration take hold all while being airy and seamless. Deep and luxurious on the packed finish, the magnitude of this Brunello is endless. Now use your imagination, the future is unwritten. Will drink and develop even further for another 10-15 years.

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$14.99 BTL./$179.88 CASE

After tasting the new arrival of Coreggia's Arneis last week and finding out it could still be sold for $15, I quickly became incredibly enthusiastic to offer it to all of our white wine-loving friends.
Blazing, gorgeously ripe and stunningly balanced with loads of blood orange, lemongrass, starfruit, and mineral on the nose. In the mouth it is dazzling, dry and brisk, but with no shortage of depth and flavor. Fantastic white for roasted, barbecued or deep fried chicken or with seafood especially Asian-style seared tuna or fried calamari.

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$26.99 BTL./$323.88 CASE

With the ever-escalating prices for Barolo and Barbaresco, it only makes sense to look elsewhere in Piedmont to find excellent Nebbiolo wines that can develop, and are well priced. Located west of Barolo and Barbaresco, the Roero region is a sleeping giant for Nebbiolo. Known for its Arneis but with the sandstone-based soils, this area’s young producers are conveying a different and compelling Nebbiolo narrative.

Angelo Negro is an estate that can trace its roots back to 1670. Having excelled with Arneis since 1971, the current leader, Giovanni Negro is now boasting an exciting range of wines including several top-notch Nebbiolo wines. The 2013 Prachiosso reveals glorious aromatics of telltale rose petal and black licorice, but there are also overtones of birch, coffee and blackcurrant. In the mouth, this shows plenty of youthful tendencies, but also has glorious depth and sophistication. Very long and extensive and crawls nicely through the mouth. Plenty of structure here as well; this is the Michael Phelps of Nebbiolo! If you want to approach a bottle now, don't feel as though you are committing a crime, but for maximum pleasure drink it from the end of 2018 – 2025.

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$16.99 BTL./$203.88 CASE

Ca' Lojera is located in close proximity to the south shore of Lake Garda in Lombardia. Unlike many other quaffing Lugana wines, this wine is dead serious and cerebral as hell.

Made from 100% Turbiana, armed with redolent tones of melon, tangerine, lime, and pronounced saline which seemingly go non-stop until the bottle is drained. Filling the mouth with flavor and having plenty of depth, there is ample zesty, crisp acidity that holds it all in balance and extends to the finish that is both stately and sassy. Salmon-season is almost here, and furthermore, it will pair with a bounty of seafood choices. Youze all owe to yourselves to try it. What the hell are you waiting for?!?!

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$10.99 BTL./$131.88 CASE

Hearty, fruity, spice-laden and full of fun, this wine possesses way more spirit than many 11-dollar offerings from Italy can ever achieve! From Abruzzo, this hearty, generous red may well be the Wednesday Wine of the Summer!

Low-yield intensity from its opaque color to the penetrating notes of black plum, ripe cherry, espresso bean, licorice and lavender, this meaty and exotic creature maintains a satisfying roundness and beautiful balance with a heartiness that fills the mouth with deep and fleshy yet vibrant red earth tones dominating the smooth and succulent texture. The finish is very pure and savory making it the perfect red for slow cooked meats, aged cheeses and substantial pasta dishes.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Owned by the Falvo family who formerly owned Avignonesi in the Tuscan village of Montepulciano, Li Veli is now firmly established as one of the innovators and leaders of this Southern Italian growing region. Susumaniello is an ancient, rediscovered varietal converting many who once thought this area was solely about Primitivo and Negraomaro.

The origins of this grape seem to be varied, many theorizing that it came from Greece or the Dalmatian coast of Croatia. Recent DNA has shown it to be a cross between a native Puglian table grape and Garganega, which is the grape of Soave. It’s Italy, go figure. Either way, the mini-surge of wines that are emerging are quite delicious. Alluring plum, rhubarb, almond allspice and cedar/tobacco characteristics unfold from the glass. In the mouth, the dry and nuanced flavors coat the mouth and reveal tones that make one think of the crunchy portion of a cherry, just around the stone. The finish draws out and somersaults into being textbook, yet upscale Southern Italian with its tangy, earthy, spicy qualities and wild red fruits. Pair this delicious wine with slow roasted meats, perhaps something with a spicy Asian influence or just a simple, well-ripened pecorino cheese.

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$74.99 BTL./$899.88 CASE

Earlier this year we held a most delectable dinner at CiaoVito with Gianluca Grasso and featured a number of his wines including this outstanding single cru wine that comes from a full-bodied, yet very balanced vintage. It is very surprising that any of this is still available and since there is, why not score some for your cellar, we certainly will!

Tucked away in the hills between Monforte d'Alba and Castiglione Faletto is the Cantina and vineyards of Elio Grasso. We have been ardent supporters of these wines for a while now, and it is extremely clear that Gianluca Grasso is without a doubt one of the young superstars of Barolo. Vigna Chiniera, located within Monforte D'Alba is a south facing vineyard that sits at 320-360 meters. Loosely packed, sandy soil with a limestone base that makes this wine very special. A frighteningly brilliant and complete wine of perfumy, sublime, sophistication, with plenty of depth and backbone. Undertones of licorice, balsam, lots of underbrush and earth give even more complexity along with length. At age 9, there is an emerging glimpse of what is truly to come. Hold this debonair bad boy until 2017 and drink it on through to 2028 but if you want to try a bottle, decant about an hour in advance and serve in a proper glass.

Funky Fresh Flavor Feature!


Hello Friends,
It's on this weekend and there are tickets remaining to both of these great events celebrating music and wine!

A great way to experience beautiful music in beautiful settings with beautiful wines!

Things kick off this Friday evening, August 19 with a concert in the beautiful barrel room at J. Christopher Wines. One of Oregon's finest makers, if you've ever experienced their wines, you know the incredible craft and beauty winemaker Jay Somers strives for. It’s inspired the evening's programming, too, and this concert will highlight chamber music through three very different pieces. (Jay is himself a musician and instrument maker, as you’ll see in this great Guitar Aficionado feature).

J. Christopher’s beautiful barrel room is intimate, yet has acoustics that sound as though it may have been designed for chamber music, not wine barrels. To compliment this space, we’ve chosen music that showcases the warmth and personality of string instruments in different ways. Tickets are selling quickly and available online now at, or by clicking on the picture above. We can't encourage you enough to take in these special concerts!

Bryan & Karen