Domaine Christine et Gilles Paris Chiroubles “Terroir” 2015

Beaujolais, France

$22 / $125.40 / $224.40

EMILY’S PICK: Precise and full of personality. Fragrant faded rose and violet, ripe forest berries, and a clean, silky finish. Gilles Paris is one of five brothers, all of whom are involved in wine in some way or another. Chiroubles is arguably the most challenging terroir of the Beaujolais; nowhere else in Beaujolais do you find Chiroubles’ combination of steepness, storm exposure, and thin, sandy granite soils. Paris captures the struggle in this wine. Cultivated entirely by hand, this wines is made as naturally as possible (no chemicals or mechanization, no sulfur additions, no oak aging), so you can truly taste the “terroir” that is Chiroubles. Enjoy at your leisure.

Patton Valley Vineyards PTG 2016

Willamette Valley, Oregon

$24 / $136.80 / $244.80

EMILY’S PICK: A fun, local take on the French “Passe-tout-grain” method (a Burgundy appellation that co-plants and co-ferments Pinot Noir and Gamay grapes together–how scandalous!;-) This method of planting allows the grapes to mature simultaneously. By regulation, the wine must contain more than 30% Pinot Noir and more than 15% Gamay. Although not commonly used, other allowable grapes are Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris, which must be less than 15%.
Patton Valley winemaker Derik combines their Estate Pinot Noir, Gamay, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris to make a whole cluster, co-fermented, and partially carbonic kick-ass crowd-pleaser. Reminiscent of a fresh, fruity, funky cru Beaujolais that is meant to be drunk slightly chilled. Just under 40 cases available, so don’t wait too long!

Szigeti Gruner Veltliner Brut NV

Burgenland, Austria

$21 / $119.70 / $214.20

EMILY’S PICK: Easy drinking elegance. Whether you’ve had Gruner Veltliner before or not, this is, without question, the most fun way to have it. Lively, crisp, tiny bubbles that playfully balance on the fine line between dry and sweet. This is the Austrian underdog of French Champagne. In fact, only Champagne yeasts are used throughout the vinification process and dosages (topping off with reserve wine and cane sugar) are prepared using local sweet wine. For the Szigeti brothers, the process of methode traditionelle must not trump the integrity of the fruit. In other words, their wines are always a clear expression of the grape varietal and never masked by yeasty, fermentative flavors of secondary fermentation in bottle. So fresh and so clean, you’ll feel revived after just one glass. 🙂

Querce Bettina Il Campone Toscana Rosso 2015

Tuscany, Italy

$14 / $79.80 / $142.80

KEITH’S PICK: This wine is bright ruby red in color with a fragrant floral nose and an “old world” feel. Good acidity precedes a nice, mineral finish. This wine reminds me of a local Italian “house wine” that will pair well with spaghetti or simmered meat stews. Made from 100% Sangiovese Grosso and fermented in stainless steel. Drink this wine now!

Querce Bettina is a family-owned and run farm on the southwest slopes of Montalcino at an altitude of around 1400 feet above sea level. Husband and wife team Sandra Barenghi and Roberto Moretti bought the 72-acre estate in 1990 and in the following years, planted 6 acres that’s solely dedicated to their beloved Sangiovese. – winery notes

Cerruti Fol Moscato Secco 2014

Piedmont, Italy

$20 / $114 / $204

KEITH’S PICK: This wine greets you with a nose of lavender, citronella, and wet stone. It continues with a clean and bright–yet slightly tart body–and ends with a short, clean finish with noticeable acidity. 100% Moscato fermented and aged in cement for eight months. Winemaker Ezio bottles it in the spring to enhance its freshness and drinkability. A short, clean finish. Pair with spicy vegetables, salty summer salads with citrus and cracked dungeness crab.

Ovum Big Salt White Blend 2016

Elkton, Oregon

$17 / $96.90 / $173.40

KEITH’S PICK: This extremely refreshing white field blend is a mix of Riesling, Gewurtztraminer, Sauvignon Blanc Rose, and Muscat. It has a honeysuckle nose with stony minerality and noticeable salinity due to the vineyards being close to the ocean. This wine will pair well with any seafood but is delicious on its own. A perfect warm weather white!
Founded in 2011, Ovum winemaker John House produces organic white wines from 30-year-old dry-farmed vines with no subtractions or additions — except for a tad of SO2. His low intervention method is “a commitment to letting the vintage and vineyard come through, for better or worse.” – winery notes

Chateau du Cayrou Cahors 2012

Cahors, Southwest France

$18 / $102.60 / $183.60

WILL’S PICK: Produced from the best 37-acre parcel in this storied estate, this is a blend of mainly Cot (Malbec) and a bit of Merlot. It is a truly an exquisite example of balance and finesse that we look for in this region. Amazing floral components, with dried dark fruit, some nutty components, cocoa, and coffee grounds — all in great harmony. Drink now or hold for the next decade.

“Cayrou” means gravel, and the soil is characterized by the high proportion of gravel in the vineyards. This makes for great soil drainage, which facilitates ripening and softening of the tannins in the finished wine. – winery notes

Methode Sauvage Vista Verde Chenin Blanc 2016

Chalone, California

$24 / $136.80 / $244.80

WILL’S PICK: From the San Benito County in California, this Chenin is one of the most pleasing surprises this year. This wine has nothing to envy from its cousins in France. Lots of weight and power; salty with some great mouth-coating tannins, as well as some sharp acidity. This is most definitely a perfect food friendly wine that you will not soon forget.

Winemaker Chad Hinds started “Methode Sauvage” in 2013 and explains why he chose this area of California: “With limestone rich soils and a climate moderated by the Monterey Coast, Vista Verde has to be the unicorn of California Chenin vineyards, and a perfect launching point for a study in what this state can do with the varietal.” – winery notes

Weiser-Künstler Riesling Estate Feinherb 2016

Mosel, Germany

$22 / $125.40 / $224.40

WILL’S PICK: If you are into great value German wines then look no further. This is a flawless effort by this well-known estate. Super clean with lemon tones and citrus oils. Dry with extra sharp acidity… a lovely bottle of Riesling.
Situated in the German Mosel town of Traben-Trarbach, many of this estates’s vineyards fell into obscurity in the latter part of the 20th century. These vines have not seen the “modernization” that many sites in the Mosel. This means these cliff vineyards still have their jutting, ladder-like terraces where there’s a high density of very old, ungrafted vines. The owls on their labels (now on the capsules, too) represent, weise, or wisdom, a reference to Konstantin’s last name, Weiser. – importer notes

Montenidoli Il Garrulo Chianti Colli Senesi 2015

Tuscany, Italy

$20 / $114 / $204

NEIL’S PICK: This family’s story says it all, so I’ll save my usual verbose prose for another wine. Save to say that this wine has real soul! It’s a delight to drink! It comes in the traditional, conservatively subtle brown glass bottle that the Chianti of yesteryear came in. It is like taking in Chianti Colli Senesi with every sip — A time machine to transport you there, to the veranda of a country home or piazza in the local village. I haven’t enjoyed a traditional Chianti this much in recent memory. Here is her story:

In 1965 the property of Montenidoli (mountain of the little nests) had been abandoned and overgrown when Sergio Muratori and Elisabetta Fagiuoli arrived with their 9 children. Today, their 24 hectare estate of vineyards focuses on indigenous varietals using organic farming methods. Their love for the land is evident in their high quality and award-winning wines. Elisabetta is still at the helm, working hard to continue their tradition in the vineyards as well as be an ambassador for the charitable works she and her husband started nearly 50 years ago. Grapes: 75% Sangiovese, 20% Canaiolo, 3% Trebbiano Gentile, 2% Malvasia Bianca – importer notes

Tessier Cour-Cheverny Les Sables 2015

Touraine, France

$26 / $148.20 / $265.20

NEIL’S PICK: Where the heck is “Cour-Cheverny”??? Doesn’t matter (Loire Valley, FYI). But just when you thought you had a handle on the stellar Sauvignon-based wines of the region, here comes this one-off grape, Romaratin. What I love about it is that, rather than grapefruit pith and herbal notes of Cheverny’s Sauvignon, this region and grape bring more mouthfeel and texture, along with rich preserved lemon notes, a slew of salty minerals, substantial weight (think white Burgundy), and a unique ability to partner with every green veggie you can think of. It’s also the ideal partner with poussin and poisson, as with the regional goat cheeses. I can’t think of a better high-class wine to grace your table as mushroom season arrives, and a nip hits the air.

Tenuta Migliavacca Vino Rosso 2014

Monferrato, Italy

$14 / $79.80 / $142.80

NEIL’S PICK: This authentic, lusty red is exactly the kind of wine that “got me into wine” in the 1990s. I came to realize that my love of travel and food naturally led to discovering regional wines as a perfect partner for cuisine. Heidi — a small, local importer here in Portland — travels around the world and imports these soulful wines for food and wine lovers who share our passion. Her notes speak to me, and I’ll share them with you here:

The Migliavacca Rosso is the bottling of the farms “Sfuso” that has been sold to locally for generations. It’s the same wine that has been poured out of barrels and into neighbors jug; or delivered to Turin door steps in demijohns since before we were born. A blend of early picked Barbera boosted with small amounts of Freisa and Grignolino.