Friday Sips

Join Us for Friday Sips!

Today, Friday October 26, 2012 3:30 – 6:30
Drop by today to taste three vintages of a fabulous Bordeaux brought back from Bryan’s trip to France earlier this year. Read on, this is a compelling story…


On my trip to France back in March one of the fine producers in Bordeaux that I was able to visit was Chateau Charmail. Regarded as one of the leading Haut Medoc estates, after sampling these wines, it was easy to realize that these would be $75, not $35 if they were 2 kilometers south in St-Éstephe. A smaller Château of 70 acres, Charmail’s vineyards planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Petite Verdot are contiguous around the Chateau. What makes these wines so good is the virtual mosaic of terroirs (gravel, clay, sand and limestone) that bring ultimate dimension and depth. A profound overachiever that competes with many classified growths!

$34.99 BTL./$419.88 CASE

In just about all vintages of Charmail, these are powerful Bordeaux. Not only to name-check just St-Estephe, one could throw a baseball and it would land in the vineyards of the famed Chateau Sociando-Mallet who also happens to make great and powerful Bordeaux. 2010 is a vintage throughout Bordeaux that is destined for greatness. On the heels of the outstanding 2009s, these wines are totally different beasts. Full-on aromas with penetrating depth and personality. Blackberry, cherry, violet, gravel and prominent earth/cedarbox scents prevail. In the mouth it’s very concentrated, layered, yet youthfully streamlined and needing cellar time to unveil its best form. Packed, persistent and really impressive, this wine should definitely go into the cellar and be consumed 2015 – 2025.

$31.99 BTL./$384.00 CASE

One of the great sleeper vintages that many wine insiders have figured out is the sneaky-fine 2008. Still no shortage of power, the cool qualities of 2008 show up quite well, mainly given that the wine is more laden with cassis and red berry vs. the black tones of 2010. From the first moment of tasting, the quality of this wine instantly seduced and blew my socks off, especially when I found out its price. Loaded with the previously mentioned red fruits, smoke, engaging cooking herbs, potpourri and dark chocolate tones. Rather succulent texture, comes in waves, really fills the mouth and has ample, underlying structure that will allow it to develop nicely. Decant about an hour in advance if you wish to open one now. Do have it with pan-roasted beef dish or soft-ripened cheese…or cellar it and enjoy it through 2020+.

$31.99 BTL./$383.88 CASE

One of the highlights and best experiences was to be able to taste a 10 year old version of this wine and even more exciting is to actually be able to offer some! Another sleeper vintage, the 2002 is right in its wheelhouse of drinkability. Lovely antique Bordeaux scents of dried black raspberry, perfumed floral tones, incense, a presence of smoky spice, espresso and underlying forest floor aspects provide complexity and just keeps enticing as it unfurls in the glass. Well-concentrated, deep and now becoming smooth as all hell; debonair but the house style of masculinity never departs. Undeniable St-Éstephe-like aspects really glide and linger on the top-drawer finish. No problem to enjoy through 2017 and most likely beyond….a real treat to be able to offer mature Bordeaux at such a fair price!!

Don't miss this special tasting being held Monday October 29. This year, along with New York, Portland is the only city chosen to hold this tasting presented by Wines From Spain, the group created by the Spanish Institute for Foreign Trade to promote their country's fabulous wines.

Reserve online at or by phone, 503-546-7877

To get $10 off, use the discount code WFS2012 when reserving.

Do note, Cellar Door isn't handling reservations for the event