MARCH 2017 NEWSLETTER

 

The French Pinot Noir Sampler … 197.89 per case

We came across three French Pinots Noir that we felt compelled to offer, hence our latest sampler! These unique expressions of Pinot Noir come from three distinctive regions of the country. The case sampler consists of four bottles of each wine:

2014 Thevenet & Fils, Bourgogne "Bussieres Les Clos" Burgundy  (18.99/205.09)
Saturated red fruit aromas foreshadow a round and generous Bourgogne accented by tart cherry and playful spice elements.

2015 Andre Dezat, Sancerre Rouge, Sancerre  (19.99/215.89)
A bright, floral bouquet opens into a taut and energetic Loire Valley Pinot with impressive acidity, fruit freshness, and an enduring finish.

2015 Vignobles Guillaume, Pinot Noir, Vin de Pays de Franche-Comte, IGP  (15.99/172.69)
Stone and raspberry tinged aromas lead into a delicate, mineral-driven Pinot with alpine flair and beautiful focus.

 

RED WINES


OREGON

2014 RoseRock Drouhin, Oregon Pinot Noir, "Zephirine", Eola-Amity Hills, Oregon (S) 53.99/553.93

This is a superb debut for RoseRock’s top Pinot Noir cuvee! Located at the southern tip of Oregon’s Eola-Amity Hills AVA, the great Drouhin family’s new RoseRock estate boasts ancient volcanic soils, cool temperatures, and an ideal elevation range for the cultivation of Burgundian varietals. RoseRock’s just-released Pinot Noir Zephirine – like Domaine Drouhin’s Laurene, a barrel selection of the best lots from the estate vineyard – conveys classic Drouhin elegance and supple texture with the dusty volcanic soil overtones of the terroir. RoseRock’s Zephirine casts a soft crimson-cherry wood color followed by lovely aromas of wild cherries, boysenberries, sandalwood, violets, and rose petals. Suave and sumptuous on the palate, the Zephirine follows through with a silky core of pure black raspberry and Bing cherry fruit accented by barrel tones of nutmeg and smoke. Mouthwatering acidity keeps the wine fresh and vibrant through its long finish. Enjoy now or over the next seven to ten years.
James Suckling – 96 points

FRANCE

2014 Domaine La Guintrandy, Cairanne, Vieilles Vignes, Southern Rhone Valley, France (O) 16.99/183.49

Olivier Cuilleras is the sixth generation of winegrowers to lead the Domaine La Guintrandy in the important Cotes-du-Rhone Villages vignobles of Visan and Cairanne. Cuilleras employs organic viticulture, superbly situated old vines, hand harvesting, and traditional long vatting in the cellar. Crafted from old-vine Grenache (80%) and Syrah, Cuilleras’s Cairanne Vieilles Vignes opens with an opaque color and savory aromas of black cherries, wild blueberries, black pepper, lavender and thyme. Sappy with old-vine concentration, the wine stains the palate with a deep core of bitter cherry fruit, firm tannins, and savory notes of dried herbs, leather, and menthol. On the finish, the wine’s intensity joins forces with complex suggestions of underbrush and an electric undercurrent of stony terroir. At this price, this is a wine to buy by the case to enjoy now and over the coming seven years with roast lamb, grilled burgers, ratatouille… just about anything that calls for a hearty red wine.

2015 Domaine du Cros, Marcillac, "Lo Sang del Pais," SW France 13.50/145.80

Marcillac, an isolated appellation located east of Cahors in France’s Massif Central, is home to the wonderfully obscure grape, Fer Servadou (or Mansois in local dialect). Fashioned exclusively from the Fer Servadou, Domaine du Cros’s humble French “country” wine casts an opaque black-ruby hue in the glass followed by exotic aromas of Szechuan peppercorns, Thai chili peppers, black pepper and ferrous earth. Deeper and more complete thanks to the warm 2015 vintage, the Lo Sang del Pais presents a suave, saturated palate marked by notes of red currants, pipe tobacco, freshly ground black pepper, and camphor. Fine, buffered tannins dust the lips and transition the Pais to its long mineral-driven finish. Enjoy this beautiful and distinctive Marcillac rouge now and over the next five years with sausages, burgers, grilled vegetables, and cassoulet. A staff favorite every year, and this year it’s bolder, deeper, and more generous than ever!


ITALY

2013 Castello della Paneretta, Chianti Classico, Tuscany, Italy 15.99/172.69

The Castello della Paneretta, one of Portland’s favorite Chianti estates, has fashioned an absolutely charming and delicious Chianti from its vineyards in Chianti’s Barberino Val d’Elsa zone. A blend of Sangiovese (85%), Canaiolo, and Colorino, Paneretta’s 2013 Classico offers a brilliant, transparent black cherry color followed by a deep core of cherry and red currant fruit accented by notes of cinnamon, cloves, and vanilla. On the palate, Paneretta’s 2013 Classico conveys a fresh, vibrant kernel of red berry fruits complemented by fine tannins, candied rose petals, button mushrooms, and oregano. Clear and vibrant on the finish, suggestions of vanilla bean, salumi, leather, and underbrush emerge to complement waves of red plum and tart cherry fruit. This is fantastic and immediately delicious Chianti Classico at a very fair tariff. Enjoy now with deep-fried zucchini blossoms, roast pork, or braised beef short ribs, but be sure to buy enough to lay down a stash in your cool cellar to follow the wine through its three to five year evolution.

2013 Rapalino, Barbera d’Alba, "Pian Romualdo," Piedmont, Italy 13.99/151.09

Federico Rapalino’s exemplary Barbera is among our customers’ most beloved wines and one of the most successful selections in L&E newsletter history. 2013 is shaping up to be a legendary Piemontese vintage, and Rapalino’s 2013 Barbera shows all the class and elegance that the press is extolling about this lovely harvest. Rapalino’s transparent black plum colored Barbera casts an earthy nose of blackberries, violets, leather, spicy cinnamon, dark tobacco, and almonds. Elegant from the moment it hits your palate to its long, graceful finish, the wine’s blackberry and black currant fruit is complemented by complex hints of tar, leather, tobacco, vanilla bean, and button mushrooms. Longtime fans know that Pian Romualdo is one of Barbera’s grand cru sites, and every vintage Rapalino’s expression confirms the vineyard’s exalted status. Delicious now with braised beef, oven roasted root vegetables, egg-rich pastas, or grilled pork, Rapalino’s 2013 Barbera will also cellar well for seven to ten years, which will allow its mushroomy, tertiary notes to blossom. Sensational, age-worthy Barbera!

2013 Colombera & Garella, Coste della Sesia Rosso, Cascina Cottignano, Alto Piemonte, Italy (S) 18.99/205.09

Here’s a wonderful, table-ready Alto Piemonte selection from Colombera & Garella. A blend of Nebbiolo (70%), Croatina, and Vespolina, the 2013 Rosso casts a crimson-garnet robe followed by spicy aromas of pie cherries, ferrous earth, star anise, and dried rose petals. Brisk and begging for food, Colombera & Garella Rosso alternates waves of wild cherry and red currant fruit with ferrous minerals, underbrush, and blond leather. Focused, vibrant, and totally soil transparent, Colombera & Garella’s Rosso finishes with firm, dusty tannins and suggestions of finely ground white pepper, cinnamon bark, rose petals and button mushrooms. Perfect for barbeques, stews, braises, pizzas, pastas, and recipes spotlighting mushrooms or buckwheat. Enjoy now and over the coming five years.

2013 Tintero, Barbaresco, Piedmont, Italy (S) 19.99/215.89

The Piedmont’s great Tintero estate crafts this delicious, authentic and approachable Barbaresco from a tiny parcel in Barbaresco’s famed Treiso zone. Casting a transparent garnet core with Nebbiolo’s classic amber rim, Tintero’s 2013 Barbaresco is redolent of sweet cherries, red licorice, menthol, smoke, and aniseed. With aeration, the young Barbaresco reveals a gorgeously pure core of cherry and red currant fruit backed by fine, food-friendly tannins and complex notes of rose petals, limestone soil, camphor, and fennel. Notes of violet, cinnamon, and cherry blossoms mark the wine’s lingering, smoky, tannin-dusted finish. Bright and generous, yet structured, we suggest giving this authentic and ridiculously affordable Barbaresco plenty of air and serving now and over the coming fifteen years with hearty Piemontese fare like creamy risottos, egg-rich tajarin topped with shaved truffles or a rich ragù, braised game, rack of lamb, and hearty beef stews.
-A Kermit Lynch selection

SPAIN

2015 Castro Ventosa, Mencia Joven, "El Castro de Valtuille," Bierzo, Spain 14.99/161.89

Nothing can stop the vibrant Raul Perez! He is one of the leading lights of northwestern Spain, and is generally considered one of the country’s finest winemakers. Perez crafts this Joven – wine to be enjoyed young – from high-altitude, 25- to 70-year-old Mencia vines around the village of Ventosa de Abajo. Opaque black plum in the glass, Castro Ventosa’s Joven is deep and meaty, offering scents of tamari, black currants, peppercorns, and smoky minerals. Gripping on the palate, the wine alternates waves of focused cassis and blueberry fruit with firm, savory tannins and complex suggestions of cured meats. The wine finishes long, with notes of bitter cherry skins, black licorice, violets, white pepper, and juicy acidity. Castro Ventosa’s El Castro de Valtuille is a wonderful introduction to the magic of Mencia and the treasures of Bierzo. It’s just the ticket for barbecues and a natural partner for grilled meats, baby back ribs, bean tapas, salumi, braised rabbit and hearty stews. Enjoy now and over the coming three years.


WHITE WINES


AUSTRIA

2015 Malat, Gruner Veltliner, "Furth-Palt," Kremstal, Austria 17.99/194.29

The Malat Winery has been producing exceptional wines since 1722. Ninth generation winemaker Michael Malat continues the tradition by crafting an impeccable portfolio from some of Kremstal’s finest vineyards. Malat crafts his Furth-Palt Gruner from rocky loess soils on the foothills of the famed Stift Göttweg monastery. A brilliant green-gold in the glass, Malat’s Gruner projects a bouquet of lime peel, passion fruit, green apple skin, oregano, and smoky soil. Fresh and nervy on the palate, the Gruner fuses a ripe melange of white peaches, Pippin apple, and honeydew melon with the earthy lentil notes that make Gruner so special. Invigorating and crackling on the finish, the wine leaves the palate refreshed with final suggestions of crisp fennel and white pepper. Thanks to its low 12.5% alcohol, Malat’s Gruner will work effortlessly as a picnic wine, an aperitif, or as a complement to sauteed green vegetables, grilled zucchini, braised pork, and roast chicken. Enjoy now or over the coming two years.


FRANCE

2013 Joseph Drouhin, Rully, Blanc, Cote Chalonnaise, Burgundy, France (B) 22.99/248.29

The Cote Chalonnaise village of Rully is renowned for its bold, full-bodied expressions of red and white Burgundies. Rully’s whites are celebrated for their ability to convey both Burgundy’s limestone goût de terroir and a deliciously rich palate texture. For the Maison’s Rully blanc, Drouhin sources its fruit from the clay- and limestone-rich soils of Rully’s best sites and, every year, offers an affordable Burgundy that approaches its Cote-de-Beaune counterparts in quality and mineral expression. A medium lemon-gold color in the glass, Drouhin’s 2013 Rully blanc offers a bouquet of limestone-infused lemon curd, gardenia blossoms, and raw hazelnuts. On the palate, the wine’s Burgundian soil notes and racy acidity lift delicious suggestions of lemon zest, fresh ginger, and clover honey. Drouhin’s Rully finishes clean, crisp, and focused with complex notes of yellow plums, green pineapple, and smoky minerals. Drink this delicious, authentic, and sharply priced white Burgundy now and over the next five years with broiled halibut, grilled salmon, and light poultry and pork dishes.

2014 Kientzler, Chasselas, Alsace, France 11.99/129.49

Words simply fail to describe how delicious and enjoyable this wine is: from the first sip, you just can’t put your glass down! Andre Kientzler and his sons, Thierry and Eric, are producing textbook, character-filled wines from the entire portfolio of Alsace’s noble varieties. Best of all, they are available for extraordinarily modest tariffs. Bright green-gold in the glass, Kientzler’s Chasselas explodes with mineral-driven aromas of green plums, orchard blossoms, heather, and wintergreen. Fresh and zesty on the palate, this Alsatian beauty will prove extremely versatile as a picnic wine, by itself as an aperitif, as a partner to traditional Alsatian cuisine, and with everything across the vegetable, seafood, light poultry and pork spectra. Buy a case to enjoy now and over the next two years. Forget all the descriptors and be sure to be at the shop the Saturday this criminally inexpensive Alsatian beauty is poured.

2008 Domaine Ernest Burn, Pinot Gris, Alsace, France (S) 19.99/215.89 reg. 27.99

The Burn family traces its Alsatian winegrowing roots back over 300 years. Ernest Burn has re-established historic vineyards in his village of Gueberschwihr that had either fallen into disrepair or were not being farmed to their full potential. Burn’s crowning achievement is the reconstruction and replanting of the iconic twelve-acre Clos St. Imer within the grand cru Goldert vineyard, the source of his greatest wines. This is the Burn domaine’s Pinot Gris, a wine that convincingly conveys the estate’s style of late-harvest, honeyed, botrytis-driven opulence. A deep orange-amber color, Burn’s 2008 Pinot Gris fills the rooms with aromas of poached Williams pears, cinnamon-dusted Tarte Tatin, quince jelly, and smoky soil. Honeyed and unapologetically glazed with the noble rot, Burn’s 2008 Pinot Gris coats the palate with exotic suggestions of honeyed hazelnuts, smoky botrytis, and petrolly minerals. Full, fleshy, and off-dry on the palate, notes of sultana raisins, licorice, and clover honey are lifted by buffered acidity and insistent minerality. This is a wonderful choice to pair with smoked duck, smoked salmon, seared foie gras, light desserts, and assertive washed-rind cheeses. Enjoy now and over the coming five years.

ITALY

2015 Pieropan, Soave Classico, Veneto, Italy (CO) 14.99/161.81

Every vintage it seems that Pieropan’s expression of Soave is the reference standard, and with the warm, dry 2015 vintage they’ve raised the bar yet again. Founded in 1890 by Leonildo Pieropan, the estate is the Veneto’s leading light for top-quality Soave. Pieropan’s fleshy, juicy, delicious 2015 release is classic blend of Garganega (85%) and Trebbiano di Soave grown exclusively on hillside estate vineyards in Soave’s superior Classico subzone. In the glass, the wineprojects a vivid lemon-gold color followed by beguiling aromas of orchard blossoms, pear skin, almond blossoms, and flinty minerals. On the palate, vibrant pear, green melon, and lime juice notes vie with complex suggestions of neroli, mint, and volcanic minerals. The wine finishes brisk, long, and satisfying. Pair this beauty now and over the next two years with shellfish, trout, halibut, sauteed green vegetables, and seafood pastas.

2015 Pievalta, Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico, Superiore, Marches, Italy (B) 17.99/194.29

The Pievalta estate practices biodynamic viticulture on vines grown in the Verdicchio’s finest Superiore zone. Pievalta’s mineral-driven 2015 Verdicchio casts a medium lemon-gold color followed by appetizing aromas of crushed almonds, lentils, marjoram, and smoky minerals. Showing impressive freshness, brilliant acidity, and a vibrant mineral expression, the wine hits the palate with a zesty core of key lime, honeydew melon, and Bosc pear fruit. Earthy lentil and enlivening limestone mineral notes return on the wine’s long, refreshing finish. The Pievalta’s impressive clarity, vibrant fruit, and earthy soil notes make this one of the most electric and soil-driven Verdicchios in recent memory. Enjoy now and over the coming three years with clams, mussels, baby squid, grilled green vegetables, mushroom risotto, braised lentils, white bean stews, young goat cheeses, and light pork recipes.

SPAIN

2015 Fraga do Corvo, Godello, Monterrei, Galicia, Spain 16.99/183.49

Godello, the hottest white grape in Spain, was almost lost after the ravages of phylloxera. Thanks to its distinctive fruit expressions and its brilliant ability to convey the nuances of its site, Godello is enjoying an enthusiastic revival. The Frago do Corvo’s 100% Godello sports a green-tinted lemon-gold color in the glass followed by zesty aromas of star fruit, yellow plums, pear, and saline minerals. Brisk yet fleshy on the palate, the wine’s salty mineral backbone propels a core of yellow orchard fruit and top notes of lemon balm. Long and juicy, the wine finishes with suggestions of freshly grated ginger, lemongrass, bay leaf, orange blossoms, and salty sea breeze. Enjoy this distinctive Galician beauty now and over the next two years all by itself or as a complement to seafood and vegetable paellas, broiled halibut, salt cod fritters, raw clams, and salt-grilled prawns.

2014 Narupa, Albarino, "Alala," Val do Salnes, Rias Baixas, Galicia, Spain (S)
18.99/205.09

From the loamy soils of the Rias Baixas’s Val do Salnes sector, Narupa crafts this distinctive Albarino from grapes crushed by foot and fermented on the stems. A medium green-gold in the bowl, Narupa’s Alala blossoms with deep aromas of white grapefruit, tarragon, jasmine, and freshly cut grass. Bright and zippy on the palate, the Alala bristles with saline minerals, bracing acidity, and delicious notes of green pineapple, grapefruit pith, lime zest, and fresh hops. Taut, focused, and very mineral, the Alala finishes with lingering suggestions of wet stones, citric acidity, quinine, and fresh herbs. This is an unusually deep and complex Albarino that needs a bit of air to reveal its impressive clarity and length. It will delight now and over the coming two years as a partner to prawns, seafood tapas, vegetable tortillas, steak fishes like swordfish or mahi mahi, sashimi, and mild cheeses.

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

March 3
Burgundies from Meursault

March 17
Syrahs from Crozes-Hermitage

April 7
2015 German Riesling


SATURDAY TASTINGS:
Weekly; Starts at
12 noon - No fee

March 4
From Oregon: Tyson Crowley of Crowley Wines and John Paul from Cameron Winery will be on hand to pour their wines. Plus, from Spain: Narupa Alalá Albariño, Fraga do Corvo Godello, and Castro Ventosa El Castro de Valtuille Mencía.

March 11
French Beauties: Kientzler Chasselas, Dom. Ernest Burn Pinot Gris, Joseph Drouhin Rully Blanc, Dom. du Cros Marcillac Lo Sang del Païs, and Dom. La Guintrandy Cairanne.

March 18
Tutti Italia: Pieropan Soave Classico, Pievalta Verdicchio, Rapalino Barbera d’Alba, Colombera & Garella Coste della Sesia Rosso, Tintero Barbaresco, and Paneretta Chianti Classico.

March 25
We pour our French Pinot Noir Sampler. Plus: Malat Grüner Veltliner Furth-Palt, and RoseRock Drouhin Oregon Pinot Noir Zéphirine.



Special Event at L&E:

2008 Produttori Single-Cru Barbaresco Tasting

Tuesday, March 21 6:30 p.m.

We are pleased to present a tasting of the superb 2008 single cru Barbarescos from Produttori. Nine single cru Barbarescos will be offered, representing some of the finest vineyards in the region.

Seating is limited and prepayment will secure your seat. Tasting fee 60.00. Please call for your reservation or purchase online. The complete list of wines will be posted on our website.

 

 



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.