© Liner & Elsen, all rights reserved. Availability and prices may have changed since the newsletter date.

 

OCTOBER 2016 NEWSLETTER

 


THIS MONTH'S CASE SAMPLER:

Oyster Season White Wine Sampler … 134.99  reg. 150.00

Longtime readers of this newsletter know of our unbridled love for the great, soil-inflected wines of Muscadet. We know of no other wine that expresses terroir so well, offers such great value, and performs with so much versatility at the table.

As the waters cool, we find ourselves returning to the fishmonger to take home dozens of our favorite bivalve. Briny oysters and brisk Muscadet are one of the food world’s most satisfying pairings. We encourage you to sample these three wonderful wines from the western Loire Valley with oysters, mussels, clams, light white-fleshed fish preparations or with sauteed green vegetables or vegetarian frittatas.

Our case sampler contains four bottles of each selection:

  • 2015 Chateau de la Jousseliniere, Gros Plant du Pays Nantais Sur Lie, Perle Blue (S): Aromas of crushed stones, lemon juice and fresh bay leaf; brisk as can be and begging for oysters.
  • 2015 Domaine de la Pepiere, Muscadet, Sevre et Maine sur Lie (O): Suggestions of oyster shells, green apples, crisp Bartlett pears and flinty minerals; fuller on the palate and perfect for sole in a sauce beurre blanc.
  • 2012 Domaine des Cognette, Muscadet Sevre et Maine, Les 2 Terres (O): A blend of wines from granite and gabbro soils; straw gold and pungent with granite minerality, iodine, green pear and yellow apple skin; ineffably mineral, incisive and complete.

 

RED WINES


OREGON

2014 Crowley, Pinot Noir, La Colina Vineyard, Cuvee L&E, Willamette Valley, Oregon 39.99/431.89

Our fifth vintage of the Crowley La Colina Vineyard Cuvee Liner & Elsen Pinot Noir is a stunner. This year's blend is composed of two distinct barrels (neutral oak on both) from the La Colina Vineyard. The first barrel, 30% percent whole-cluster Pommard, gives the blend a very silky palate, with bright snappy acidity, herbs, spices, and firm tannins. Barrel two, 100% whole-cluster Pommard, provides brighter citrus notes, firmer tannins, and very good structure, all of which lend the wine a very balanced and long finish. Aromatically, the wine offers gorgeous notes of Baker's chocolate, black and red cherries, violets, Assam tea, citrus, and hints of blueberry. Add some herbs and spices, and you have quite a complex, earthy and delicious Oregon Pinot Noir. The Crowley Cuvee L&E is elegant, with power that sneaks up on the finish to remind you that this is a serious wine. While it will drink well young, this wine will age at least 10-12 years in a cool cellar. Limited.
Half bottle (375ml.)  20.99/215.36
Magnum (1500ml.)  84.99

2015 Evesham Wood, Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley, Oregon (S) 17.99/194.29

Deep, lush and impeccably balanced, Evesham Wood’s 2015 Pinot is a mouthful of classic Oregon Pinot and an absolute joy to drink. The warm, dry 2015 growing season graced Oregon vignerons with the blessing of gorgeously ripe and expressive fruit. Always among the finest choices for quality and value, Evesham Wood’s Pinot casts a deep, pure, youthful ruby color in the glass, followed by fruit-forward aromas of black raspberries, Bing cherries, rose petals and cured meat. Juicy and inviting, the wine stains the palate with dense black cherry and black raspberry fruit accented by notes of wood smoke, crushed herbs, spicy cinnamon and lavender pastille. Tangy acidity and dusty tannins buoy the wine’s deeply pitched black-fruited core before segueing to a long, sappy fruit-driven finish. Drinking oh-so-well right out of the chute, it will also gain nuance and complexity with another two to five years in the bottle. Pair with just about anything but shellfish and acidic vegetables.

AUSTRIA

2014 Claus Preisinger, Basic, Neusiedlersee, Burgenland, Austria (B) 15.99/172.69

Working biodynamically and placing his focus firmly on red wines, Claus Preisinger is one of Austria’s brightest and most talented young winemakers. Preisinger’s entry-level red, humbly titled “Basic,” is a blend of equal parts Zweigelt and Blaufränkisch. Transparent ruby in the glass and sporting vibrant aromas of black cherries, black raspberries and earthy cranberries, Preisinger’s Basic reminds us of a great Savoyard Mondeuse. Fresh, palate-staining and endlessly versatile, the wine conveys Pinot Noir-like complexity fused with Gamay’s fleshiness and Syrah’s earthy, leathery baritone edge. A versatile partner for medium-weight preparations like roast poultry, dishes laden with fresh chanterelles, sausages, charcuterie, earthy vegetarian risottos… just about anything but raw vegetables, shellfish, cephalopods and white-fleshed fishes. Enjoy young and often.

FRANCE

2012 Les Vignerons du Quercy, Les Hauts Lastour, Coteaux du Quercy, SW France 10.99/118.69

Les Vignerons du Quercy is a group of thirty-three winegrowers dedicated to achieving the vast potential that this newly minted Appellation Controlee in Southwestern France can offer. For their Les Hauts Lastour bottling, the vignerons blend 20% each of Malbec and Gamay and 10% of Merlot into a foundation of Cabernet Franc. Tobacco and herbal notes buoy a vibrant core of plum and cassis fruit. On the palate, tangy suggestions of cedar, tobacco and Bing cherries yield to fine, lifting tannins and an undercurrent of limestone minerals. The wine finishes long and savory with leafy tobacco notes and hints of herbs. The Hauts Lastour satisfies both as a delicious, quaffable rouge and as a wine to tickle the curiosity of French wine fans. This is one heck of a value and a terrific, versatile choice to partner with pates, sausages, roast pork, burgers and Thanksgiving turkey with a savory dressing.

2013 Domaine de la Chanteleuserie, Bourgueil, Cuvee Beauvais, Loire Valley, France (S) 18.99/205.09

Bourgueil, along with its neighbor Chinon, are the planet’s benchmarks for the noble Cabernet Franc grape. Among the pinnacles of the Chanteleuserie domaine is this single-vineyard wonder, the Cuvee Beauvais. Beauvais, a south-facing hillside parcel of old vines planted in tuffeau, a porous limestone common in the central Loire Valley. The tuffeau imparts the wine with an incomparable bouquet of perfumed limestone dust accented with hints of crushed gravel. Opaque red-ruby in the glass, Chanteleuserie’s 2013 Cuvee Beauvais infuses this limestone gout de terroir into the wine’s crunchy core of red raspberry and red currant fruit. Lip-smacking acidity and waves of fine, palate-coating tannins buoy suggestions of sweet tobacco, brown spices, violets and licorice on the Beauvais’ long, complex finish. This is another stunning wine from Chanteleuserie and, as always, a terrific value. We suggest buying a case to enjoy now and over the coming decade with pork rillettes, gratin dauphinois, hanger steaks, grilled eggplant, fresh chevres, burgers, poultry, just about anything but seafood and green vegetables.
- A Kermit Lynch Selection

2014 Domaine la Manarine, Cotes du Rhone, S. Rhone Valley, France (O) 14.99/161.89

Domaine la Manarine’s Cotes du Rhone shows all that’s so delicious and inviting about great Grenache in a lovely, precocious vintage like 2014. Translucent black-ruby in the glass, Manarine’s Cotes du Rhone conveys vibrant wild cherry fruit accented by notes of lavender, garrigue, bitter orange peel and sappy vine stems. Fleshy and supple on the palate, the wine spotlights its deep, tangy core of big cherry and loganberry fruit before revealing plentiful, chewy tannins and hints of tar, camphor and cracked black pepper. Delicious, tangy and vibrant, Manarine’s Cotes du Rhone is a terrific and affordable choice for year-round enjoyment. Serve it with a slight chill at Indian summer BBQs and at room temperature in cooler months with roast meats, game, burgers, ratatouille and grilled eggplant. It will also make a smashing Thanksgiving red for those looking ahead to the holidays.

2014 Ermitage du Pic St. Loup, Pic St. Loup, Tour de Pierres, Languedoc, France (B) 14.99/161.89  reg. 16.99

The wines from Pic St. Loup are especially floral, complex and garrigue-driven, and these wonderful aromatics are spotlighted in this brilliant 2014 Tour de Pierres from Ermitage du Pic St. Loup. A lovely purple-ruby color in the glass, the wine fills the bowl with aromas of violets, garrigue, tar and leather. A blend of Syrah (40%) and Grenache (40%), plus a dollop of Mourvedre and Carignan, the wine saturates the palate with chewy black cherry, cassis and blackberry fruit buoyed by fine, dusty tannins and complex notes of cured meats and game. Unusually complex and fascinating, Ermitage du Pic St. Loup’s 2014 Tour de Pierres finishes with further waves of black fruits, tar, leather and herbal garrigue. Perfect for barbeques, this will pair especially well with grilled eggplant, Portobello mushrooms, lamb, beef and burgers. It will also grab the attention of your guests as a welcome wine. Enjoy now or over the coming five years. Limited.

2014 Domaine des Schistes, Cotes du Roussillon Villages, Essencial, Languedoc-Roussillon, France (O) 13.50/145.80

Deep in the heart of the Roussillon in south-central France, Jacques and Mickaël Sire’s Domaine des Schistes has leveraged the appellation’s lovely 2014 vintage to craft this deep, beguiling and wildly scented rouge. A creative blend of Carignan (40%), Grenache (30%) and Lledoner Pelut, a rare clone of Grenache indigenous to the Catalan, Schistes’ 2014 Essencial opens with a deep, translucent purple-ruby in the glass followed by game and earth-driven aromas of black currants, leather, garrigue and tar. Fresh and vibrant on the palate, the Essencial offers a palate-staining kernel of black raspberry and cassis fruit lifted by fine tannins and tangy acidity. Notes of blond leather, button mushrooms, tar and dried oregano join persistent waves of black raspberry fruit on the wine’s long, lingering finish. A lovely winter warmer, pair this Pyrenean beauty now and over the coming two years with sauteed lentils, roast goose, pan-seared lamb loin chops and grilled marinated Portobello mushrooms.

2012 Chateau la Coustarelle, Cahors, Cuvee Tradition, SW France 13.50/194.29

The wines of Southwestern France continue to amaze us with their diversity and quality-to-value ratio. Perhaps the apex of the Southwestern French red wine hierarchy is the hallowed Cahors appellation. A classic Cahors blend of 80% Malbec (Cot) and Merlot, Chateau la Coustarelle’s Cuvee Tradition casts an opaque plum-ruby robe from the glass followed by deep aromas of elderberries, cassis, cinnamon stick and potpourri. On the palate, a rich, velvety mouthful of blackberry and cassis fruit marries with complex notes of limestone soil, Baker’s chocolate, black licorice, dried bay leaf and button mushrooms. Softened by eighteen months in large oak foudres and packed with a chewy core of plum and currant fruit, the wine expresses a wonderful balance between the Malbec’s dense, brooding fruit and the Merlot’s silky, chocolaty texture. This is reference-standard Cahors that balances Old World intensity with modern accessibility and represents a veritable steal for its quality. Enjoy now and over the next decade, served with roast goose, grilled ribeye steaks, braised short ribs, and rich vegetarian casseroles.

ITALY

2013 Fattoria di Felsina, Chianti Classico, Castelnuovo Berardenga, Tuscany, Italy 23.99/259.09

2013 is shaping up to be a classic, age-worthy Chianti vintage, and this is reference-standard Chianti Classico that delivers superb soil transparency alongside the kind of tangy wild cherry fruit that we so love. Crimson-tinged ruby in the glass, Felsina’s 2013 Chianti Classico opens with textbook Chianti expressions of black cherries, saddle leather, tamari and dusty earth. Based on Sangiovese from 30- to 50-year-old-vines, Felsina’s Chianti Classico graces the palate with spicy, dusty cherry fruit, which tightens mid-palate to reveal classic Sangiovese tannins and acidity alongside smoky limestone earth. On the wine’s long, elegant finish, gamy plum and tangy cherry fruit are joined by hints of cedar, pencil lead, sassafras and bitter chocolate. It can be paired now and over the short term with eggplant dishes and grilled beef, but the patient among you are advised to hold onto a cache for enjoyment when the wine reaches its maturity in five to seven years.

 

WHITE WINES


FRANCE

2014 Dom. de Roally, Vire-Clesse, Maconnais, Burgundy, France (S) 23.99/259.09

The Domaine de Roally Vire-Clesse is one of the most distinctive Chardonnays in all of Burgundy. Domaine de Roally's style is not shy; theirs are low-yield, late-harvested Chardonnays that are not afraid to carry a touch of heft to amplify the wine's mineral expressions. Roally's 2014 Vire-Clesse casts a bold golden color from the glass with aromas of honeycomb, bee pollen, raw cashews and smoky minerals. Rich and mouth-filling, the wine fuses suggestions of quince paste, apricots and ripe yellow apples with refreshing acidity and a firm mineral spine. Long and smoky on the finish, the wine's rich core of yellow fruits coats the palate while its acidity and oyster-shell mineral energy simultaneously enliven it. Enjoy now and over the coming decade. A white Burgundy of incomparable character!

2015 Domaine Adele Rouze, Quincy, Loire Valley, France (S) 17.99/194.29

Old vines, gentle handling and minimal intervention impart Rouze’s Quincy with the sap, delicacy and refinement that lifts it far above its peers and directly into the lofty milieu of far higher priced Sancerres and Pouilly-Fumes. A brilliant lime-glinted gold color, Rouze’s 2015 Quincy soars from the glass with assertive aromas of lemon zest, clover, mint, white grapefruit, chives and Thai basil. Deep and fleshy on the palate, Rouze’s Quincy conveys zesty fresh lemon and grapefruit expressions infused with a delicious undercurrent of flinty minerals. Rouze’s Quincy finishes fleshy and delicious with green herbal tones and persistent waves of flinty minerals propelling the wine’s juicy core of citrus fruit. This is world-class Sauvignon Blanc and a steal for its tariff. Enjoy this wonder now and over the coming three years with mollusks, freshwater fishes, sauteed green vegetables and light poultry recipes.

2014 Vins Auvigue, Macon-Davaye, Le Moulin du Pont, Burgundy, France 14.99/161.89

Vins Auvigue’s Macon-Davaye rises far above the average Macon with its fruit intensity, soil expression and lemony acidity. Davaye is one of the many small hamlets entitled to hyphenate the name of the village to the greater and more familiar Macon-Villages moniker. Opening with a pale lemon-gold color, Vins Auvigue’s Macon Davaye conveys deep aromas of pear skin, hazelnuts, lemon curd and chalky soil. Hints of yellow rose petals, lemon juice and a white limestone mineral undercurrent provide additional complexity on the wine’s impressively complex palate. As the wine lingers, echoes of hazelnut skin and a dusting of salty minerals complete this classy, top-caliber Macon. 2014 is being hailed as a classic, collectable white Burgundy vintage, and dedicated fans of affordable white Burgundy will delight in this wine. We suggest serving now or over the next five years with salmon, roast chicken, light pork preparations and halibut.

2014 Domaine Maurice Schoech, Pinot Auxerrois Vieille Vigne, Alsace, France (O) 16.99/183.49

The Schoech family traces its roots in the vineyards of Ammerschwihr back to 1650. The current domaine was established in 1971 and boasts a superb portfolio of traditional Alsatian wines. This is Schoech’s delicious Pinot Auxerrois, often called or blended in with Pinot Blanc to become Pinot d’Alsace. A brilliant lime-glinted lemon gold color, Schoech’s Pinot Auxerrois – from vines over 35 years old – fuses a base of fleshy, honeydew melon and green apple fruit with smoky soil notes and suggestions of orchard blossoms. Brisk acidity frames the wine’s melon fruit expression and propels its top notes of chamomile, clover and ginger. Schoech’s Pinot Auxerrois finishes long, clean and begging for food. If you’re looking for a versatile wine that will complement all your autumnal fare, look no further than this elegant Alsatian beauty from Maurice Schoech. Enjoy now and over the coming three years.

PLUS: Oyster Season White Wine Sampler … 134.99  reg. 150.00


ITALY

2015 Tenuta le Velette, Orvieto Classico Superiore, Lunato,
Umbria, Italy 14.99/161.89 reg. 16.99

Le Velette’s Lunato is among Italy’s most elegant, dry and aromatic white wines. Orvieto, one of Umbria’s most renowned white wines, is at its best when made from fruit grown on tufaceous soils and bedrock in the region’s Classico Superiore zone. The Lunato is fashioned from a blend of Grechetto (40%), Malvasia Bianco (20%), Trebbiano (20%), plus Verdello and Drupeggio from the estate’s oldest vineyards. Casting a deep lemon-gold color from the glass, the wine opens with aromas of hawthorn blossom, Golden Delicious apples and quinine. Deep and resinous on the palate, the wine conveys notes of apricot, fennel, aromatic basil and anise. On the finish, the Lunato is long, dry and persistent with further suggestions of Mirabelle plums, quince and salty tuffeau minerals. Try this deep, satisfying Orvieto now and over the next two years with shellfish, freshwater fish dishes, light poultry preparations, white pasta dishes, sauteed green vegetables and fresh cheeses. Limited.

2015 Tenuta dell’Ugolino, Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi, le Paiole, Marches, Italy 11.50/124.20

Verdicchio is central Italy’s most distinctive white varietal, especially when it hails from the mineral-rich soils of the Castelli di Jesi’s Classico Superiore zone just miles from the Adriatic Sea. Tenuta dell’Ugolino’s 2015 Verdicchio le Paiole opens with a pale lemon-gold color and complex aromas of acacia blossoms, sweet meadow flowers, crushed lentils, sugar snap peas and salty minerals. On the palate, the Paiole combines Mirabelle plum and golden apple fruit with a riveting acid backbone and suggestions of snap peas, sweet cream butter, cassia and caraway seeds. Brisk and uncompromisingly dry, the Paiole finishes with reprises of fresh lentils, grapefruit pith, yellow plums and saline minerals – all lifted by a brilliant acidic spine. A wonderful foil for roast pork, baked chicken, freshwater fish, fried seafood and recipes featuring zucchini and summer squashes, serve this superb Verdicchio now and over the coming three years.

SPAIN

2015 Vina Mein, Ribeiro, Galicia, Spain (S) 19.99/215.89

In 1988, Vina Mein founder Javier Alen and a group of friends replanted 40 acres of vineyards on the granite hillsides above the Avia River. Their focus was to reestablish the renown and excellence of indigenous Galician white grapes. From a blend of Treixadura (70%), Godello (15%), and a melange of Loureira, Albarino, Torrontes and Caino, Vina Mein’s flagship wine casts a pale straw color followed by exotic aromas of jasmine, lime zest and fresh ginger. Ample on the palate with suggestions of tangerine, pippin apple and quinine, the wine turns the corner mid-palate to present zesty acidity and a savory lashing of salty minerals. Fresh, zippy and teeming with smoky, salty minerality, the wine finishes clean and long with reprises of juicy citrus fruit, freshly grated ginger and aromatic jasmine blossoms. Enjoy this mouthwatering northwestern Spain blanco now and over the coming three years with everything from the sea, light poultry dishes, pork chops and bean and lentil tapas.

 

ROSÉ WINE

2015 Domaine Olga Raffault, Chinon Rose, Loire Valley, France (O) 17.99/194.29

Domaine Olga Raffault’s 2015 Chinon rose gleams with a brilliant pale salmon color and lovely aromas of smoky soil, golden raspberries, peppery salumi and pink rose petals. Brisk, spicy and invigorating in the mouth, Raffault’s rose alternates impressions of fleshy red currant and rainier cherry fruit with lifting acidity, smoky limestone minerality, and an appetizingly bitter edge. Juicy and gripping, the wine finishes with further expressions of earthy rhubarb, spicy cinnamon, white pepper and jasmine blossoms. This is gripping, tactile, dry rose for terroir geeks and true devotees of soil-expressive Loire Valley wines. It’s also stunningly delicious and can be drunk with glee by anyone and everyone who appreciates the pleasures of the world’s finest rose wines. Pair this beauty with grilled salmon, steelhead, roast chicken, light pastas with fava beans and cherry tomatoes, and fresh chevres.

 

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


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

Oct. 7
Reds and Whites from Abruzzo, Italy
that will knock your socks off!

Oct. 21
Great Burgundies from Savigny-Les-Beaune

Nov. 4
World-Class Syrah from Cornas


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

Oct. 1
Cameron Abbott, The Piedmont Guy,
is in town for a tasting of… guess what? Plus, from here and there: Tenuta dell’Ugolino Verdicchio, Crowley La Colina Cuvee L&E Pinot Noir, Evesham Wood Pinot Noir, and Claus Preisinger Basic.

Oct. 8
From France:
Schoech Pinot Auxerrois V.V., Vins Auvigue Macon-Davaye Le Moulin du Pont, Les Vignerons du Quercy Les Hauts Lastour, Ermitage du Pic St. Loup Tour de Pierres, Dom. de Schistes Essencial, and Dom. la Manarine Cotes du Rhone.

Oct. 15
From Oregon: Michael Lundeen
will pour his two superb sparkling wines and his great Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays. Plus: We serve our Oyster White Wine Sampler!

Oct 22
Joe Moura from Casa Bruno
will pour the superb Tuscan wines of Fattoria di Felsina, plus Le Velette Lunato and Dom. Adele Rouze Quincy.

Oct 29
Michael Wheeler from PDX Wines
will pour Dom. Olga Raffault Chinon Rose, Dom. de la Chanteleuserie Bourgueil Cuvee Beauvais, Vina Mein Ribeiro, and Dom. deRoallye-Clesse, and Ch. la Coustarelle Cuvee Tradition Cahors.


SPECIAL EVENT:

A Red and White Bordeaux Tasting with Elizabeth Spurr of Aquitaine Wines

Friday, Oct. 14, 5:30-7 p.m.

Please join us for an informal tasting of exciting wines from the Aquitaine Bordeaux portfolio.Reservations are not necessary. Tasting fee: $15.

The full 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.