July 2015 Case of the Month - $110

FYI: The case contains 1 bottle each of our 12 selections at a pre-discounted price. You are also welcome to purchase the wines individually, as part of a custom mixed case (10% discount), or by the whole case (20% discount).

 
 

Montfaucon Les Gardettes 2012
Medium bodied and elegant, this caught our attention with it's pretty nose, silky texture and overall flavorful profile. An unusual blend from the southern Rhône’s right bank, this has 50% Cinsault, 15% Mourvedre, 15% Grenache, 10% Syrah and 10% Carignan. That high percentage of Cinsault probably accounts for its inviting floral aromatics and fresh personality while the other varietals fill in the rest: strawberry jam and black raspberry fruit with a balancing dose of dusty earth on the finish. $11.99

Principe Pallavicini Frascati 2014
For all the kajillion bottles of wine that Italy produces very little of it comes from the area around Rome, that despite its outsized presence in history. This white is one notable exception and as the winery notes, the traditional blend for Frascati goes back over 1000 years. The owners of this winery probably know what they are talking about, their family (noble no less) has over 300 years of viticulture experience. Frascati makes for good late summer drinking: light bright and very dry, the mild peach tang says summer but the overall vibe is less excited then say, a Vinho Verde, and the minerally earthy notes foreshadow autumn’s falling leaves, subtle yet inescapable. $9.99

Matua Pinot Noir 2013  
A clear winner out of a round of similarly priced Pinot Noir, this Marlborough value is supple yet vibrant, light on its feet but complex enough to keep it interesting. The vivacious tangy cherry fruit is fresh and clean, accented by notes of black tea, brown spice, orange zest and a light pumice stone minerality. $10.99

Sanz Rueda 2013
This 100% Verdejo offers a dual personality in a tight little package. Ample, round and slightly waxy in texture, its richness is offset by lively grapefruit and pineapple flavors that slide toward apple on the crisp finish. Throw in a little floral grass and fleeting gunflint on the nose and you are good to go. $11.99

Luchetti Lacrima Morra d’Alba 2013
And now for something completely different. From the school of highly aromatic Italian reds comes this closeout deal. There aren't many Lacrima available in Portland and certainly not at this price so this is a fun opportunity to try one. One whiff and you'll know why this varietal is a breed apart; intensely fragrant, it's like walking through an overflowing garden mid-summer, late afternoon where every flower and plant is at peak scent output. Iris, rose and violet roll into boysenberry and wild strawberry while crushed marjoram and an exotic Chinese five spice mix hangs in the background. Soft supple and medium bodied, it fills out nicely with air but stays bouncy on the palate. $9.99

Lavradores Douro Blanco 2014
Hiding behind a simple label and a modest appellation, this Portuguese white offers surprising personality and kick. Bursting with a tart lime and powdery rock intensity, this races through flavors of green apple, under-ripe nectarine and musk melon before finishing stony and almost tannic. It’s as refreshing as a Vinho Verde but with a lot more character. The main varietal here is Rabigato, as fun to say as this wine is to drink. $9.99

Ridge Crest Syrah 2011
The label may not be the most exciting but the wine itself is more than solid. On a day when we tasted close to 50 wines, this Columbia Valley red was appreciated for it clean medium bodied fruit, smooth texture and restraint in the oak/alcohol department. Riding a wave of black cherry, light blueberry and muted pepper it's satisfyingly rich without being too heavy. $9.99

Altos de la Hoya Monastrell 2012
A hearty old vine Spanish favorite, this new vintage seems brighter and better delineated than recent examples offering saturated blue/black fruit with plenty of savory old world aromatics. It’s nice to pick out lavender, cured black olive and licorice notes while the smoky fruit rolls across the palate. 91 points from critic Josh Raynolds who calls it “a remarkable value”. $9.99

Thulon Beaujolais-Villages Rosé 2014
Ok, one more rosé to rock before the summer fades and this is a fun one. We don’t see many pinks from Beaujolais which is too bad since Gamay makes such a lively summer-friendly wine. This is light on its feet with a lemon zestiness balancing cherry peachy flavors that duke it out on the long clean finish. $9.99

Hawk Crest Cabernet Sauvignon 2007
We couldn’t help ourselves. This is such a deal, customers loved it, amazingly we can get more and it’s really good! A second label of Stags Leap, this tastes surprisingly serious, rich but structured; the macerated raspberry and black currant fruit is deep, briary and persistent while grippy tannins hang on the finish. Was $15+ now just $7.99.

Morrison Lane Viognier 2012
A label change deal takes this from $24 down to just $11. Despite its Walla Walla appellation from a warm year this is made in a crisp fresh style for Viognier, delivering flavors of juicy green grapes, white peach and dried apricot before finishing snappy and lightly saline. Was $24, now $10.99

Roc de Segur Bordeaux 2013
Reminding me of the vin de maison at many simple Paris bistros, this has a charming youthful rusticity to it, offering a nice mix of true Bordeaux character and accessible fruit. That fruit starts medium red before turning darker mid-palate finishing savory and muscular with a cigar/graphite edginess. Pair with grilled steak or lamb, preferably dusted lightly with herb and see how the flavors expand when paired with food. $9.50  

 

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