Epic Cabernet Special, Brunello, Bubbles + even more Collectibles and Values

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[reg. $23.99]
SPECIAL - $13.99 BTL./$167.88 CASE

We have saved the best for last of the tremendous trio of specials from this stalwart producer. From the long-time, Walla Walla-based stalwart producer Chuck Reininger, Helix is the label utilized for the Columbia Valley selections that are excellent values. This one at $24 is always excellent but at 14 bucks, is one that Cab loving winos should have in their lives.

Made with 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from the Phinny Hill Vineyard, which is located on the western edge of the Horse Heaven Hills appellation. Laden with cassis, mocha, blackberry, smoke and allspice tones that nicely mingle with spicy oak influences on the nose. Polished, harmonized and sophisticated in the mouth, this wine is a great match with any red meat dish. Generous flavors shine among the well-placed red fruit tones that have lovely depth and concentration without being overbearing or hot. The finish is very expansive, balanced and offering up an array of spices. Very drinkable now and can easily age through 2023.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Off we go from volume and loud Cab Sauv from Washington to smooth, juicy, alluring Cab Franc from the Loire Valley. Not as famous as the neighboring villages of Bourgueil or Chinon, the wines of St-Nicolas have been known as the “Oakland of the Touraine” for more for their guzzling, working-class, bar a vin qualities.

That is until now. Over the last decade, a few producers have taken the lead and have proved that these wines can compete with their more famous neighbors. Most of my experiences with St-Nicolas have always been with the not-so-serious quaffers of the appellation, so last week when I tasted this one, I marveled at what was one of the choicest St-Nicolas that I have ever come across. Made up of 100% cabernet franc, we recommend serving it in a Riedel or Spiegelau Burgundy glass due to its fragrant attributes. Delicate raspberry, dried herbs, licorice, sandalwood and tobacco permeate from the glass and continue challenging the olfactory senses as it opens. In the mouth, the lavish 2015 vintage gives it plushness, but overall, the composition of the wine is lacy, classy and seemingly fragrant in the mouth. The finish is seamless, refined and very French. Partake in a bottle with a roasted, herb-encrusted pork-loin.

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$11.99 BTL./$143.88 CASE

A plucky, unoaked fresh white wine that is a bonus buy because it comes in a one liter bottle. In fact, around here, we call it ‘date wine’ because there is just that much more to go around ;-).

From Spain’s Navarra region, the Viura grape (also known as Macabeo) is the grape utilized for white Rioja, this magnetic drop possesses vivid scents of lemongrass and lemon drop. Mouthwatering, cool and crisp with a wonderful push of fruit to go along with food-friendly minerality on the finish. Toss back several bottles of this with grilled prawns or spicy Asian preparations.

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$16.99 BTL./$203.88 CASE

Looking outside my window and seeing it rain while I type this makes me realize that fall is soon upon us and we have a prototype Piedmont kind of day, hence Dolcetto. One of Barbaresco's top-level producers who specializes in wines from the famed Rabaja vineyard, Cortese also makes fine wines from the adjacent Barbaresco village of Trifolera where the family has vines designated for their Barbera, Dolcetto and Nebbiolo wines.

A classic red wine for the whole meal with a red-violet color, intense vinous perfume, and a slight spicy note. Texturally elegant and smooth, fresh and balanced, with the bursting aftertaste that is typical of Dolcetto yet possessing the class and complexity of its Barbaresco-based vineyards. Drink this superb red with smoked meat, pork tenderloin, salami or hearty pasta dishes.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Everyone wants to score the 20-dollar bubbly that acts as if it should cost a lot more. We have found that one for you! Most people don’t realize that the Limoux region of Languedoc produces excellent sparkling wine. In fact, if not for Limoux and Dom Perignon passing through, history in Champagne (mythically, because contrary to popular belief, Dom Perignon did not introduce blending to Champagne wines but rather the method of blending the grapes before they were pressed off) might not have turned out to what it would be known as today. However, I digress....

This is a lovely spot of the jumping grape. It is meticulously farmed, followed by 18 months on its yeasts before disgorgement. 50% Chardonnay, 40% Chenin Blanc, 10% Mauzac comprise the blend and one can see, smell and taste the wine's terrific finesse, both aromatically and in the mouth. Lemon-blossom, peach-pit, and an almost cherry scent calmly and gently waft from the glass. Creamy, fine bubbles are enhanced by energetic and citrusy briskness that is especially apparent on the mouth-watering, palate-cleansing, thrusting finish. Excellent for sipping with friends and it will nicely stand up to cod, salmon, shrimp or something drowned in a romesco sauce. This is a fizz that we have absolutely no problem drinking, and you shouldn't either, especially since it won't bust the piggy bank.

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$11.99 BTL./$143.88 CASE

At a mere 12 bucks, Terriere's old vine Beaujolais Villages wine truly over delivers due to the grapes grown in red granite soil entirely within the Cru of Regnie.

Creamy raspberry with underlying spicy tones of coriander and pepper shimmer from the glass and carry over to a texture that is agile, snappy and penetrating with a total eruption of persistent flavors and depth that cascade into a long finish. Pair this with sausages, roasted chicken, grilled salmon or a nice Tomme cheese and get ready for a detonating experience!

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$39.99 BTL./$479.88 CASE

Two young winemakers, this dynamic duo has been captivating the new movement in California, which exemplifies site-specific wines with modest alcol levels versus those that are thunder and thickness. Based on old world principles and using an abundance of whole clusters, the wines from this fine producer are very compelling indeed.

It is nice when a wine is so captivating that you feel compelled to taste it repeatedly to fully understand all of its complexities. Arnot-Roberts’s Syrahs are like marathon runners tearing through the winner's ribbon. The 2016 Syrah is Sonoma with a Cote-Rotie shroud. Sexy aromatics of perfumed raspberry, creme de mure, violet, black olive and intermittent notes of cracked pepper and spicy oak that never overtake the wine's fruit or terroir reflections. In the mouth, the flavors are absolutely stunning - layered, yet very regal and real. Waves of structure build in the mid-palate and on the long, poised finish that is super refined. We are over the moon for this Syrah, especially given its fantastic pricing. Drink through 2030.

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$53.99 BTL./$647.88 CASE

On a level with famous wine names like Chateau Latour, DRC, Giacosa and more, the estate of JJ Prum is one of the most magical and sought after worldwide. A small slice of perfection, Wehlener Sonnenuhr is without a doubt one of Germany’s Mosel region’s greatest vineyard sites, definitive Grand Cru! The elevation and preferred situation of this vineyard combined with the prominent blue slate soils makes for immaculate wines that possess ballerina-like grace and can age forever. Amazingly, given the pedigree of these wines and their profound terroir, it never ceases to amaze just how much of a value these selections are, especially when one considers the prices of other luminaries in France, Italy and the US.

Tangerine and mango on the nose of this 2012 signal the site's slatey signatures, which are repeated on a sassy, generously succulent, yet firm, transparent palate. Even though this is the ultimate in vintage exuberance as combined with delicacy, and the broad, classically creamy Auslese finish hangs on for dear life. One feels a little botrytis here but the essence and purity makes you not ever need tarot cards to tell its future. Hold this until age 10 and no problem for it to age 30+ years.

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$75.99 BTL/$455.94 - SIX PACK

Everyone is seemingly going ape-merde crazy for 2013 Brunello di Montalcino wines. Guess what; they should be going crazy because this is a well-structured, classic and very ageowrthy vintage, excellent for those who want to celebrate an occasion that occurred in 2013. Il Marroneto boasts one of the nicest views on the hills of Montosoli overlooking the wonderful landscape of Tuscany. Il Marroneto remains one of the smallest producers of Brunello di Montalcino and in existence since 1974 and a mere 1600 or so cases are produced of this superb wine that is aged 39 months in 2600 liter barrels followed by 6 months in bottle before release.

From the northern sector of Montalcino, Il Marroneto produced a very elegant and highly perfumed 2013 Brunello that shows aromas of violet, mushroom, licorice, wild cherries, tobacco, rich Tuscan roasted herbs and a subtle hint of oak. The texture is silky and fine-grained with a suave earth and ripe berries dominating the expansive finish. Youthful and firm right now, but is undoubtedly destined for greatness! Sleek, stylish and structured. Wait until age 10 and drink through 2034+.


Back To School - The Three R's (Rioja, Rosso & Resonance)

This Friday, Sept. 14 from 1:30 - 6:30

We're using the letter R and featuring three excellent choices from Spain, Italy & Oregon. Drop by to get schooled!


2016 Resonance Pinot Noir Willamette Valley
2015 Rosso Spezieri (Col D'Orcia)
2014 Roda Rioja 'Sela'