Chateau Fortia Châteauneuf du Pape
Cuvée du Baron 2012
$39.99/$31.99 by the case
One of our most popular Châteauneuf every vintage and definitely a top
pick at our 2012 Barrel Sample tasting last spring, we're happy it's
finally here. The combination of value, complexity and sheer
deliciousness make this a customer favorite year after year. While most
southern Rhône reds are dominated by Grenache, almost half of this is
Syrah along with a good dose of dark Mourvèdre. This more diverse blend
coupled with Fortia's winemaking style results in a wine of ranging
complexity and succulent texture. Pure and elegant yet plenty rich, the
black raspberry fruit is spiced up nicely with licorice, crushed pepper
and subtle herbes de Provence notes. Silky tannins make this already
hard to resist but try if you can; this will be even better after a few
years in the cellar.
El Corazon Cabernet Franc First Crush
$31.99/$25.60 by the case
A favorite every year and in such short supply, it's best to get the
word out, especially this vintage. As in Oregon, Washington 2012 looks
to be a vintage to love. Many of the reds we have tasted are deliciously
fruity yet balanced with plenty of lush fruit backed by gentle structure
and vibrant aromatics. My first few tasting notes may sound
embarrassingly simple but are still accurate: really nice. Overall
richly flavorful yet light on its feet and lithe in texture, there's a
lively tension between the graham cracker/blackberry pie bass notes down
low and the mouthwatering tanginess of blue/red berries on high. Super
smooth, aromatically expressive and saturated with flavor, this is a
pleasure to drink from start to finish. Only 100 cases made. Other new
releases available in limited quantities: Duct Tape, First Base Cab
Franc and Swordfight.
Come taste with the winemaker on Saturday,
October 25, from 2-5 pm.
Evening Land "Blue Label" Pinot Noir
Willamette Valley 2012
$21.99/$17.60 by the case
Much of the excitement about the 2012 vintage has focused on its
generosity of fruit but this new arrival shows you can have your cake
and eat it too. Well-balanced and elegant, the vintage character shows
in its softness and textural warmth but it still hews to the Evening
Land style with its nod to Burgundy. Open-knit and layered, the tangle
of red fruit flavors range from bright cranberry to deeper cherry and
dried red currants. Mixed up in this jumble are savory herb and floral
notes including violet, anise and damp soil and the finish amps up with
a briary, taut muscular feel. Made from organic fruit from Lemelson
(Yamhill-Carlton) and old vine fruit from Eola Springs Vineyard (Eola-Amity
Hills), this is classy stuff for the price; enjoy now with an elegant
meal or stash some in the cellar, it's just going to get better.
Buil & Giné Priorat GinéGiné 2010
$17.99/$14.40 by the case
"Big, rich, deep, funky, smooth, juicy..." I realized after writing a
string of adjectives that the best way to sum it up was "very complete".
Balance and complexity are maybe a wine's most prized attributes and
this has both: funky old world character but not too much, rich black
fruit but not overpowering, structured yet supple. Called a great value
by tasters at last month's Priorat tasting and highly praised in the
press, a San Francisco Chronicle review says it well: "from 40% Grenache
and 60% Carignane on the region's llicorella slate soils, [this] remains
sinewed and inky, with deep black currant, dark-stone intensity and a
celery-seed spice bite. The core of Priorat, without makeup."
Abbazia di Novacella Sylvaner 2011
$14.99/$11.99 by the case
Autumn seems the best time for Alsatian whites. Richer in texture and
with a slight earthiness, they pair well with the flavors and heartiness
of fall dishes. Although this wine isn't from Alsace, it offers the same
alluring combination. The varietal Sylvaner is little known and despite
this wine's quality, the distributor dropped the price to get it moving.
Italy's Alto Adige region is in some ways a sister region to Alsace
(just jump over Switzerland in the middle), and they grow many of the
same varietals. A cooler climate and mountain vineyards, however, add a
nervy backbone of acidity and minerality to this Sylvaner, a perfect
foil to balance the fleshy fruit. The texture is honeyed and smooth with
nutty spice notes accenting mild stone fruit flavors. It finishes dry
and grippy with lingering mineral and white pepper. Novacella is highly
respected and remains a multi-functional religious abbey that has made
wine since 1142!
Tommasi Sangiovese-Cab Sauv Poggio al
Tufo Rompicollo 2011
$14.99/$11.99 by the case
A creeper of a wine, as in its mass appeal crept up on us slowly... then
pounced! It was delicious when we tasted it, but after so many wines
that day we lost track. Then slowly, repeat orders, repeat orders... Now
before it's all gone, we want to share the excitement. 92 points from
the Wine Spectator who sez: "Presents a whiff of blackberry, bacon and
ink, followed by dark berry, black pepper and spice notes. Rich and
supple, with ample structure for support and a long, fruit-, spice- and
Two Deals From Cristom
Cristom Pinot Noir Sommers Reserve
Willamette Valley 2011
$32.50/$26.50 by the case. Regular $43
Always a lovely wine and maybe the best deal in the Cristom line-up even
at its regular price, the winery made a lot of this the last few years.
Now they want to catch up with the release schedule of their other reds,
hence the great deal. Interestingly this is drinking much better right
now than the Mt. Jefferson Cuvée, their intro. offering. Medium-bodied
airy and elegant, the tangy cherry and red berry fruit is layered with
woodsy spice and appealing cinnamon/cola notes before firming up on the
lightly smoky dusty finish. Pretty now, but you can taste that it will
just keep getting better.
Cristom Pinot Noir Sommers Reserve
Willamette Valley 2009 375ml
$16.99/13.60 by the case. Regular $24
These half-bottles from a fruit-forward vintage are ready to go! Darker
fruit and a brooding richness clearly show the warmth of the vintage,
but there's plenty of herbal spice and briary chewiness that makes this
much more interesting than just a Pinot Noir-based fruitfest.
Half-bottles are great for a moderate evening for two, a quiet solo
event or even when one full bottle didn't quite do the trick, here's a
Follow Us on Facebook & Twitter,
Get Special E-Mail Offers and News
The world of wine moves ever faster as new arrivals, deals, sales and
more quickly come and go. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter so you can
stay informed and not miss a thing.
Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GreatWineBuys
We're on Twitter at @GreatWineBuy (Yes, there is no "s")
We also regularly email out special offers on allocated wines and
discounted presales, so even if you receive the printed newsletter, you
should sign up for our emails as well. Email us at
we'll add you to the list. Or you can call the shop at 503-287-2897.
about wines we’ve covered in the past?
Click here to see previous months’
musings, reviews and comments.