Mid-Week February 10th, 2016


Valentine’s Rosé Sale; Staff Pick; Modus Feature; Pattes Loup; Bordeaux 2010 Vintage; Nikolaihof Estate; Côte Rôtie and the Northern Rhone; Upcoming Arrivals


Valentine’s Day Rosé Sale
Take 10% off all Rosé Wines!

Enjoy the discount on any rosé in the shop – Champagne, Provence, Oregon, Jura, German, Italian, Spanish, Beaujolais… Everything pink!

Sale ends Sunday, February 14th at Midnight
Does not apply to pre-arrival items; wines must be paid for during the promotional period.

10% discount not displayed nor calculated on our website.
Fill your cart at the displayed price and we’ll deduct the 10% further discount before charging.

This sale includes, but is not limited to:

Moet & Chandon Brut Rose, Champagne 2006 750ML ($89.95) $49 special, 21 bottles available
Antonio Galloni 91 points “Dried rose petals, anise, sweet red cherries and mint waft from the glass in the 2006 Brut Rosé Grand Vintage. The 2006 is a big, large-scaled Rosé built on depth and structure. The flavors show early signs of development, but the 2006 should continue to drink well for many years based on its stuffing. Today the Rosé is a bit tight. I won’t be surprised to see it improve over the next few years. In 2006, the Grand Vintage Rosé is 47% Pinot Noir, 33% Chardonnay and 20% Pinot Meunier, with a high percentage of still Pinot Noir (23%) that gives the wine much of its pure vinosity. Dosage is 5 grams per liter.” AG

This was already the lowest listed price in the USA today… Now even lower, at $44.10/btl!
The next best price is $20.89 more per bottle, at $64.99!

Billecart-Salmon Brut Rose, Champagne NV 750ML ($99.95) $79 special, 10 bottles available
James Suckling 94 points “An subtle nose with plenty of fine autolysis aromas of fresh bread and sweetly fragrant yeasty notes, plus some gentle spice and chalky notes. The palate unleashes beautiful wild strawberry fruit flavors, super fresh, fleshy and pure. Great balance and depth. Drink now.” JS

That’s $71.10/bottle at the sale price!

Christophe Mignon Brut Rose, Champagne NV 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, 10 bottles available
Antonio Galloni–Vinous 92 points “Mignon’s NV Pur Meunier Rosé is quite pretty. Crushed flowers, spices, sweet herbs and cranberries are all very much alive in the glass. Lifted and precise, the Rosé is absolutely gorgeous. The blend of equal parts vintages 2010 and 2011 works nicely here. Some of the 2011 greenness is evident, but not at all overpowering. Dosage is 6 grams per liter.” AG

That’s $53.10/btl at the sale price!

Domaine de Triennes Rose, IGP Var 2014 750ML ($17.95) $14 special, 32 bottles available
Case-12 Domaine de Triennes Rose, IGP Var 2014 750ML ($199.95) $149 special, 5 cases available
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 88 points “Light, bright pink. Spice-accented red berries and orange on the incisive nose and in the mouth. Starts off taut and linear, then fleshes out quickly, picking up a subtle touch of anise with air. The spicy note repeats on the finish, which is firmed by a jolt of tangy acidity.” JR

That’s $12.60/btl or $134.10/case at the sale price!

Domaine Les Aphillanthes Cote du Rhone Rose, Rhone 2014 ($17.95) $14 special, 17 bottles available
Wine Advocate 90 points “Light pink in color, the 2014 Cotes du Rhone Rose from Domaine les Aphillanthes is gorgeous and just hard to resist. Loaded with fruit forward notes of sweet cherries, raspberries and dried flowers, it has no hard edges on the palate, a supple, seamless texture and beautiful overall balance. Count me a fan, and while it comes up short on complexity, it scores for sheer drink-ability. Drink this beauty anytime over the coming summer months, although I’m sure it will still be enjoyable early in 2016 as well.”

That’s $12.60/btl at the sale price!

Dopff & Irion Cremant d’Alsace Rose NV 750ML ($21.95) $18 special, 12 bottles available
Wine Enthusiast – “Crisp and textured, this offers plenty of fresh apple and red fruit flavors. It’s a light, bright wine that’s poised and stylish, in a fine apéritif style.”

That’s $16.20/btl at the sale price!

Ameztoi Txakolina Hijos Rubentis Rosado 2013 750ML ($34.95) $29 special, 21 bottles available
Ameztoi Txakolina Hijos Rubentis Rosado 2013 1.5L ($69.95) $59 special, 6 magnums available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 91 points “Pale orange. Lively, sharply-focused tangerine and strawberry aromas, with a zesty mineral overtone gaining strength with air. Pure and racy in style, the brisk red berry and floral flavors delivering a refreshingly bitter edge. Closes taut and stony, with very good persistence and resonating floral character.” JR

That’s only $26.10/750ml or $53.10/magnum at the sale price!
This is the only listing in the USA today!

Ameztoi Rubentis Rosado, Getariako Txakolina 2014 750ML ($24.95) $21.90 special, 28 bottles available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 91 points “Pale, very bright pink. Vibrant, high-pitched strawberry and orange zest aromas show a subtle floral overtone. Dry, racy and sharply focused in the mouth, offering tangy red berry and blood orange flavors and a suggestion of white pepper. Closes spicy, dry and long, with the floral note repeating.” JR

That’s only $19.71/btl at the sale price!

Don’t miss out. We offer some of the lowest listed prices in the USA prior to the additional 10% discount, so you’ll have difficulty finding a better deal anywhere else.


Staff Pick

I’ve made my love for Cameron’s wines no secret within these pages, and there’s likely no end in sight. The reds have been very good company during my first Portland winter – now, however, with an eye towards the spring, I’m excited to drink more of John’s wonderful white wines.

The first thing that the 2013 Clos Electrique Blanc conjures to mind is the lead-in to my notes from the first tasting: “Wow.” It’s so darned easy to drink, with an everlasting finish and lots of layers to sort through as the wine aerates. As I wrote previously, “…honeysuckle, citrus, tarragon, and honey cover the palate while remaining lively and buoyant. Layered and charming, maintaining a balance between force and elegance.”

This one, like many of the Camerons, will age wonderfully. Not that I suggest you exercise any restraint. Drink up, my friends…

– Tyler

Cameron Clos Electrique Blanc, Dundee Hills 2013 750ML ($81.95) $66 special, 25 bottles available
Winery note: “The estate vineyard at Cameron Winery consists of approximately 2 acres of Chardonnay; each block of vines is planted to multiple clones. This technique increases the complexity of the resulting wines as well as giving the vineyard great resilience in the face of various climatic and biological impediments. Most of the Pinot noir clones were planted in 1984 though some have been added along the way. Most of the Chardonnay clones were planted in 1987 with the addition of some Pinot blanc more recently in an attempt to more truly emulate a classic Burgundian white vineyard.”

John Paul’s Poetics: “The 2013 Clos Electrique Blanc, with its pale moonbeam color, conjures a dreamy world of French cuisine, convivial conversations and cozy, well-fitting sweaters. Its nose is perfumed with honeysuckle, citron, honeycomb and white peach. Lemon curd, lemon verbena and tropical fruit cascade down your palate accompanied by coquillage minerality and vibrant acidity. Pour yourself a glass, listen to an old vinyl of French lounge music, and embrace your fantasy of skipping through a vineyard in Mersault.”


Ruffino Modus Feature

Modus is a modern-style Tuscan wine first released in the 1997 vintage. It is a blend of 50% Sangiovese supported by 25% each Merlot and Cabernet. On the nose, there are dark notes of leather, cassis and dried orange peel. In the mouth there are bright notes of sour cherries and the warm leathery note continues. It is rich and robust but with a good acidity that keeps it from being over the top or jammy. The tannins are grippy yet fine, offering a pleasant drying sensation that lingers with the sour cherry note.

– Suzanne

Ruffino Modus Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2012 750ML ($27.95) Was $21.90, Now $18!, 36+ bottles available
James Suckling 94 points “A silky and refined red with currant, berry, mineral and dried flower aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, flavorful and delicious. A blend of sangiovese, cabernet sauvignon and merlot. Drinkable now but better in 2017.” JS


Domaine Pattes Loup
A Young Vignoble in Chablis

Thomas Pico began working in Chablis in 2005. His father, also a winegrower, would rent him land for his own use while Thomas also worked part-time for him. By 2007, he convinced his father to convert his 22 hectares to organic farming, gaining certification in 2010 – a rarity in Chablis! Much of Pico’s inspiration come from his brilliant neighbors Alice & Olivier de Moor as well as Lilian Duplessis – both of whom sharing Pico’s vision of careful, non-chemical interventions within the vines and cellar alike.

Harvest is done entirely by hand at the estate, with hand sorting done at the domaine. All wines are fermented from native yeasts, with the Chablis bottlings fermenting 30-40% in concrete eggs and the rest in stainless steel. The Premier Crus are all raised in old oak barrels; Pico aims for 14-16 month periods of elevage for the wines. No fining or filtration, and incredibly layered, concentrated wines to show for it.

The future is going to be great for Thomas – for one, he’s young and already quite experienced. Already, the wines have won great deals of well-deserved acclaim. This is one to watch out for.

Domaine Pico Wines Currently Available:

Thomas Pico Domaine Pattes Loup Les Beauregards, Chablis Premier Cru 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 10 bottles available
Wine Advocate 92 points “The 2013 Chablis 1er Cru Beauregard is similar to the Vaillon in that it demands coaxing from the glass. It eventually repays your patience with granite, almond and light hazelnut scents that are very focused. The palate is a little more rounded and fruit-driven than the Vaillon, with subtle hints of orange zest and white pepper, satisfying weight on the back palate with a long saline finish. This is another very fine 2013 from winemaker Thomas Pico.” NM
Stephen Tanzer–Vinous 90 points “Pale straw-yellow. A bit more exotic on the nose than the Côtes de Jouan, offering scents of orange oil, yellow peach and spices. Sweeter and fruitier on the palate, with a flavor of orange zest complemented by a trace of honey. More typically 2013 in style than the Côtes de Jouan and richer on the aftertaste.” ST

Thomas Pico Domaine Pattes Loup Butteaux, Chablis Premier Cru 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 33 bottles available
Wine Advocate 92 points “The 2013 Chablis 1er Cru Butteaux is more reserved, earthier on the nose compared directly with the Beauregard and the Vaillons. Touches of chalk and granite begin to emerge with a hint of orange rind in the background. The palate is well balanced with a keen line of acidity, more orange zest and dried apricot notes with just a hint of honey toward the finish. There is a fine grip in the mouth with a long and spicy finish. This is all about the steady build to the finish and it constitutes another excellent wine from the finest drummer in Courgis.” NM
Stephen Tanzer–Vinous 91 points “Bright, light straw-yellow. Subtle spice and mineral aromas on the lively nose. Rich, saline and dry on the palate, offering a distinctly saline, tactile quality to the flavors of citrus fruits, spices and stone. Lovely texture and mineral-driven persistence here. At once concentrated and energetic, and tightly coiled for the vintage, this wine shows more vineyard than vintage character and should evolve nicely.” ST

Thomas Pico Domaine Pattes Loup Cote de Jouans 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 11 bottles available
Wine Advocate 90 points “The 2013 Chablis Côte de Jouan is matured in barrel for one year (alcoholic and malolactic) and then six months in vat. It has a precise and quite understated bouquet with hints of white truffle filtering through the citric fruit. The palate is well balanced with light pear and citrus notes on the entry, immediately followed by a well-judged citric seam that lends a sense of tension to the finish. For me, this is a distinct level up from the village cru and is well worth hunting down.” NM
Stephen Tanzer–Vinous 89 points “Bright pale yellow. Rather austere aromas and flavors of apple skin, menthol, caraway seed and crushed stone. Juicy and nicely delineated, showing firm dusty minerality for the vintage. The apple note carries through on the tactile, brisk finish. Not as rich as the superb 2012 version but quite supple and light on its feet.” ST

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Thomas Pico Domaine Pattes Loup Chablis 2013 750ML ($32.95) $28 special, 18 bottles available
Wine Advocate 88 points “The 2013 Chablis Villages is a blend of vines up to 60 years old, 90% in vat and 10% in barrel. This came from the latest of three bottling that Thomas Pico makes. It has a clean and precise bouquet with citrus fruit and just a faint touch of white chocolate. The palate is well balanced with a crisp, light opening, simple at first, but offering a light spicy note toward the finish to lend a bit of personality. Returning after 10 minutes, it develops a light marine element on the nose and a touch more weight on the finish.” WA


A Perfect Vintage
2010 Bordeaux

There really must be some magic to 2010. Barbaresco has seen a bit of a ratings rally since 2006, with 2010 garnering the most enthusiastic, unrivaled acclaim. Bordeaux, coming off a few rockier vintages in the early aughts, had a great 2005 and a steady few vintages thereafter. However it was the 2010’s, once again, which stole the show. It only makes sense, then to highlight some of these beautiful wines!

With 2010 Bordeaux, James Suckling draws comparisons to other favorite years such as 2000, 1990, 1986, and 1961. Robert Parker pushes the praise further, stating that 2010 may be one of the “three greatest Bordeaux vintages I have tasted in my career.”

Early ’10 was rainy, easing into a notably dry summer. Temperatures were steady, with cooler nights; yields tended to be a bit smaller and most growers harvested later due to the calm climate.
In short, the formula for the vintage’s success and ageworthiness can be chalked up to high alcohol levels, low pH, high acidities, and big tannins.

We’re thrilled to carry a number of beautiful examples from the vintage, all seen below.

2010 Bordeaux Available Here Now:

Ronan by Clinet, Grand Vin de Bordeaux, Bordeaux Superieur 2010 3L ($149.95) $119 special
Ronan by Clinet, Grand Vin de Bordeaux, Bordeaux Superieur 2010 6L ($299.95) $268 special
James Suckling 91 points “Attractive nose with milk chocolate, caramel and blackberries. Some floral notes and vanilla. Full and nicely focused on the palate with dark fruit and fine tannins. Elegant medium-long finish with a touch of licorice. Drink from 2016.”

This is the only listings in these formats in the USA today!

Chateau Coutet ‘Opalie de Coutet’ Blanc 2010 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, 3 bottles available
Wine Spectator 91 points “Rich, with lemon curd and heather notes leading the way, followed by flavors of candied citrus, grapefruit rind, citrus oil and a flash of brioche. Still quite fresh, but the long finish hints at a mellow nuttiness that will develop with age.” WS

Chateau Cantemerle, Haut-Medoc 2010 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, 21 bottles available
Robert Parker 94+ points “The wine needs a good 7-10 years of cellaring and should keep for 30 more years, but this is the finest Cantemerle I have encountered in my professional career of tasting young vintages (dating back 34 years now). Stunningly deep ruby/purple, with a beautiful nose of spring flowers intermixed with perfumed raspberry and blueberry notes, it exhibits a sort of cool-climate character. Broad, rich and intense on the palate, the wine has plenty of tannins, but they are sweet and well-integrated. Everything is delicately entwined into this beautiful, medium to full-bodied, dense purple wine, which shows stunning character and a prodigious potential for development. This is definitely a major sleeper of the vintage and even better than I thought from barrel. With its 2010, this classified growth located in the southern end of the Medoc may well have made a modern-day version of their legendary 1949.” RP

Chateau Aney, Haut Medoc 2010 750ML ($31.95) $27 special, 4 bottles available
Importer notes: “The final blend of the wine matches the proportions in which they are planted throughout the thirty hectares of vineyards: 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc, and 3% Petit Verdot. This traditional Haut Médoc is more like what you might remember of the classic Bordeaux styles of the 1960s and 1970s. Not at all cloaked in new wood or over-extracted tannins, Château Aney’s wines have finesse and balance that make them both approachable now and perfect for longer aging. They are a great choice for any cellar.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau Bellegrave, Pomerol 2010 750ML ($79.95) $69 special, 5 bottles available
Wine Spectator 88 points “Offers silky, classy, pure plum and cassis fruit, with gently inlaid toasted vanilla, black tea and licorice hints. The creamy finish glides along easily. A textbook Pomerol. Drink now through 2018.” WS

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau Lyonnat, Lussac-Saint-Emilion 2010 750ML ($29.95) $26 special, 9 bottles available
Wine Enthusiast 91 points “With Hubert de Bouard of Château Angélus in Saint-Émilion acting as consultant, this is an opulent wine. It has great fruits, big tannins that are well integrated into the fruit, and a fine future. Drink this dark and very ageworthy wine from 2017.”

Chateau Perron, Lalande-de-Pomerol 2010 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 8 bottles available
Wine Spectator 88 points “This has nice plum, raspberry and cherry notes steeped together, with flecks of clove, bergamot and iron filling in the gentle, fine-grained finish.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Chateau Rival-Bellevue, Bordeaux Superieur 2010 750ML ($14.95) $11.90 special, 17 bottles available
85% Merlot, 15% Cabernet

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Chateau Trebiac, Graves Rouge 2010 750ML ($27.95) $21.90 special, 9 bottles available
“Chateau Trébiac is the product of sandy, gravely soils with larger, outcropping cobbles. This is a classy wine, as betrayed by its beautiful ruby red hue. Its elegance is already expressed in the bouquet which covers a whole spectrum of aromas ranging from dark chocolate to toasty notes, combined with red fruit. After a mouthfilling, lush attack, the same red fruit flavours are found on the palate underpinned by velvety, silky tannins.”–Importer Notes

Clos du Clocher, Pomerol 2010 750ML ($99.95) $79 special, 2 bottles available
James Suckling 93 points “Attractive nose with dark cherries, blueberries and chocolate. Some cool stony mineral notes and raw licorice when opening. Full with intensely juicy fruit on the palate with a layered texture. Polished fine tannins and a long finish with a ripe juicy acidity and outstanding complexity. Drink from 2016.” JS

Echo de Lynch Bages Chateau Haut-Bages Averous, Pauillac 2010 750ML ($79.95) $59 special, 2 bottles available
James Suckling 92 points “A juicy wine with strawberry and blueberry character. It’s full-bodied, with velvety tannins and a fresh finish. Lots of ripe fruit. Excellent second wine of Lynch-Bages. Better in 2015.” JS

Chateau L’Eglise-Clinet ‘La Petite Eglise’, Pomerol 2010 750ML ($99.95) $79 special, 1 bottle available
Vinopolnote: 100% Merlot from the second label of the esteemed Chateau l’Eglise.

Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, Pauillac 2010 750ML ($299.95) $279 special, 3 bottles available
Robert Parker 95+ points “The 2010 Pichon Lalande is performing extremely well and at the top of the range I predicted several years ago. A final blend dominated much more by Cabernet Sauvignon than usual (66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and the rest Petit Verdot), the wine is a tighter, more tannic and structured version of this famed Pauillac, which often tends to have more of a St-Julien-like personality than most Pauillacs. Structured, backward and tannic, yet showing a fat mid-palate that is more savory, broader and more expansive than I remember from barrel, this wine is somewhat reminiscent of the 1986, given the Cabernet Sauvignon domination of the blend. Full-bodied, impressively endowed, and less sexy and velvety than normal, this is a somewhat different style of Pichon Lalande than most readers have been used to. Whether you like it more or less will depend on your point of view, but this wine, unlike most Pichon Lalandes, needs a good 5-7 years of cellaring and should keep for 30+ years.” RP

Chateau Sociando-Mallet, Haut-Medoc 2010 750ML ($69.95) $59 special, 6 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer–Vinous 92 points “(55% cabernet sauvignon, 40% merlot and 5% cabernet franc): Good bright red-ruby. Pungent, expressive nose offers black raspberry, blueberry, bitter chocolate, leather and flowers. Densely packed, juicy and sweet, with excellent inner-mouth energy to the black raspberry and mineral flavors complicated by sexy smoky oak. Lovely ripeness and vinosity here. Finishes with substantial firm tannins that will support a couple decades of graceful evolution in bottle. Like some past outstanding vintages of Sociando-Mallet, this will make a great ringer in future tastings with classified growers from the northern Medoc.” ST


Austrian Royalty

You wouldn’t infer it from the bright neon labels, but Nikolaihof has been around for a while. In fact, it may very well be the oldest wine estate in Austria’s history! Evidence has been traced back to 470 A.D.; remains of the monestary of St. Nikola can be found within the walls of the estate, hence the winery’s name. A Roman crypt was built on the ground in 63 B.C., while still exists in spite of the floorboards having sunk a meter under the weight of a millennium! Anyway, onto the wine…

The Saahs family bought the land in 1894 but were forced to sell it to the German army in 1938, who established a military base atop some of the vines. It then changed hands to the Russians, until a member of the Saahs family bought it back in 1960. At the time, the family had no money for fertilizers and, thus, moved forward in farming without them. Ever since, they have been rigorous followers of organic farming methods.

As generations have passed on, the focus has intensified towards biodynamics. In their words, the objective is to “get as much power and energy as possible into the wine whilst interfering with nature as little as possible.” No herbicides, pesticides, artificial fertilizers or sprays are used at the the winery. Instead, highly dilited preparations of stinging nettles and valerian (amongst others) are applied to the vines on an as-needed basis similar to that of homeopathic medicine.

In 2014, Nikolaihof became the first-ever Austrian winery to receive a 100-point rating from the Wine Advocate. The wine, a 1995 Riesling, makes a fine example of how ageworthy the estate’s wines are. Their Vinothek series of wines began in 1990 – while the prevailing trend in Austria was to drink young wines, the family thought to save some wines in order to commemorate the year 2000. Upon tasting the wines just prior to the turn of the millennium, they deduced that they weren’t ready yet. That particular wine finally hit market in 2004, and has since given way to Nikolaihof’s tradition of cellaring some cuvees for impressively long spans prior to release.

The estate’s specialty is dry Gruner Veltliner and Riesling with great precision and freshness; they also make fantastic wines across many ripeness levels. We’re fortunate to currently carry a very wide spectrum of their wines, with additional new releases arriving later this month.

Here are 6 of the 13 Nikolaihof Pre-Arrival Wines Arriving This Month:

Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Gelber Muskateller, Wachau 2014 750ML ($39.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Terry Theise notes “Ready? Just 10.5% alcohol. Guzzle city! Lime and tarragon, and while it’s not riper than the ’13 it’s substantially fuller; almost a GV vetiver and lots of olive and basil oils; inferential yet impactful, Timut pepper; ethereal yet dense and definite mineral; the finish is gravelly and stern.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $39.99

Nikolaihof Gewurztraminer 2014 750ML ($39.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Terry Theise notes “This is the first vintage I’ve really liked this wine; figures, with its high acidity. It has some of the basic nuttiness of the cellar, and interestingly also of (the variety) Neuburger, yet it’s varietally true; dry, not gaudy, 12% alc and no RS—but also no bitterness—and a focus of lychee stands out of the smoky murmuring dream.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Neuburger 2011 750ML ($39.95) $33 pre-arrival special
Terry Theise notes “I’ve been acquiescing to this being discreetly sold “under the table” to a few of you, but this ’11 is entirely convincing—though there’s very little of it. It’s like the nuttiest Amontillado you ever had (with 12% alc!), and is super-sexy like liquid new leather.”

Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Hefeabzug Gruner Veltliner, Wachau 2014 750ML ($29.95) $24 pre-arrival special
Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Hefeabzug Gruner Veltliner, Wachau 2015 1.L ($79.95) $66 pre-arrival special
Terry Theise notes “Cherry blossom, anise, flint; zingy with dense minty mineral’ as with a lot of ‘14s it’s ostensibly light but curiously dense, jammed with flavor.”

Both the 750 and the magnum are the lowest listed prices in the USA today!

Nikolaihof Gelber Muskateller 6-Pack Library Release 750ML ($279.95) $219 pre-arrival special
Contains one of each: ’07, ’08, ’09, ’10, ’11, ’12

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Vinothek Riesling, Wachau 1997 750ML ($219.95) $199 pre-arrival special
Case-6 Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Vinothek Riesling, Wachau 1997 750ML ($1,199.95) $1,099 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 97 points “Aged for 17 years in a domestic 3,500-liter cask before it was bottled in August 2014, the 1997 Riesling Vinothek is the best part of the regular 1997 Riesling Smaragd Im Weingebirge, which was bottled and marketed in late 1998. The aged Vinothek version offers a fascinatingly clear, bright, deep and multi-layered nose with iodine and ripe as well as intense white-fleshed fruit aromas. Full-bodied, full of finesse and elegant, this dry, transparent and mineral Riesling develops a great intensity, complexity and power on the palate, but never leaves its silky road of purity, finesse and transparency. There is a lot of Spiel and tension here, but the most exciting characteristic trait is the intense and very mineral, almost endless finish. How youthful this wine is! And its further aging potential is still terrific. The wine reminds me of certain sherries, white Riojas and Jura wines, although it is not less oxidative. But it spent a long time in cask and has the freshness, complexity and thrilling taste of those. It’s a great, unique and stimulating wine that was bottled with 12.8% of alcohol, 6 grams of residual sugar and 6.5 grams of acidity.”

Here are 4 of the 17 Nikolaihof Wines We Currently Have In-Store:

Familie Saahs Nikolaihof im Weingebirge Gruner Veltliner Federspiel, Wachau 2014 750ML ($39.95) $28 special, 9 bottles available
Terry Theise notes “Draw-you-in aromas, like the famous salad-of-seventeen-leaves, herbs and flowers they serve in the restaurant. All of them perfect. The palate here emphasizes the mustards, with the ’14 snap and bounce and spice; a lacy wine like the veins and tracings on the bottom of a leaf.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Familie Saahs Nikolaihof Riesling vom Stein Federspiel, Wachau 2013 750ML ($39.95) $33 special, 24 bottles available
Wine Advocate 92 points “The 2013 Riesling Federspiel Vom Stein offers a clear, ripe and well-concentrated bouquet of white stone-fruit aromas along with some nice terroir notes of herbs and stones. Medium-bodied, fresh and elegant on the palate, this Riesling is full of energy, mineral tension and vibrancy and demonstrates impressively, like great Mosel Rieslings do, that great dry wines do not need high alcohol levels to offer an intense, terroir-driven and stimulating taste. Still very young, this pure, piquant and firmly structured Federspiel reveals a good and piquant finish”
David Schildknecht–Vinous 92 points “Caraway and celery root, apple and lemon, hedge flowers and roses: this smells as though somebody blended in Gewurztraminer. A sappy, silky palate incorporates corresponding complexity, with faintly bitter hints of huckleberry and a bite of radish adding stimulation and a suggestion of oyster liquor saliva-inducement to a sustained, infectiously juicy and (at 11.9% alcohol) strikingly buoyant finish.” DS

Familie Saahs – Nikolaihof Vom Stein Jungfernlese Riesling, Wachau 2006 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 32 bottles available
Terry Theise notes: “It means the virgin-vintage, the first crop from young vines. And it’s what the Germans would call Feinherb, and it’s what any sane person would call irresistible! A potion of iris and lavender, spicy and penetrating; very long, seductively earthy, like a really profound Nahe Spätlese, almost the 5-spice and wildflower of Dönnhoff’s Felsenberg.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $59.99

Familie Saahs Nikolaihof im Weingebirge Smaragd Gruner Veltliner, Wachau 2013 750ML ($79.95) $59 special, 11 bottles available
David Schildknecht–Vinous 94 points “Bottled in November of last year, this repeatedly failed the official test for Qualitätswein, a detail that Niki Saahs imparts with seeming relish as well as amusement. High-toned suggestions of floral distillates mingle with hints of moss and intimations of the fruits to come. Rhubarb, apple and lime team up for a palate performance of Riesling-like brightness, sap and clarity. A sense of infused crushed stone, black tea and shrimp-shell reduction makes for a fascinating and almost preternaturally persistent finish.” DS

In total, we have 30 wines from Nikolaihof on sale. Give us a call at 503-223-6002 or consult our website at www.vinopoliswineshop.com to order or learn more!


A Tour of the Northern Rhone: Côte Rôtie

Some of the earliest wine making in France can be traced back to the Northern Rhone. Though the wines are often grouped with the Rhone-at-large or pushed aside for Burgundy or Bordeaux, some of the country’s greatest wines also emerge from the sub region. Compared to the Grenache-focused Southern Rhone, the Syrah-centric north is far cooler in temperatures and experiences a more distinctive seasonality.

The rocky soils of the north are ideal for the vines; many vineyards are terraced along the banks of the Rhone River and benefit from “la bise”, which is local nomenclature for the winds which sweep through the valley. Syrah, Viogner, Marsanne and Rousanne are vinified within the sub region. Of eight total AOC’s, the most famous are Côte Rôtie, Cornas, Hermitage, and Saint-Joseph, with the other four being Condrieu, Crozes-Hermitage, St. Peray, and Chateau-Grillet. Let’s dig a little deeper into Côte Rôtie…

Roughly translating to ‘roasted slope’, this is the northern-most AOC whose steep topography receives a substantial amount of sunlight. Wines made under the appellation’s stipulations must be made from Syrah and no more than 20% Viogner – if a wine is not 100% Syrah here, the Syrah-Viogner must be cofermented. Viogner adds aromatics to the wines here, lending a floral sensibility to the otherwise meaty, often rustic wines. Vines facing south and southeast dominate fruit production here, resulting in aromatic and elegant wines of great distinction.

Côte Rôtie Wines Available Here Now

Domaine Chambeyron Côte Rôtie La Chavarine 2011 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 32 bottles available
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 90 points “Bright ruby. High-pitched aromas of red and dark berries, potpourri and woodsmoke pick up a peppery nuance with air. Sappy, sharply focused black raspberry and bitter cherry flavors expand slowly on the back half, with a gentle floral pastille nuance emerging. Soft tannins shape the finish, which lingers with good sweet persistence.” JR

M. Chapoutier Côte Rôtie La Mordoree 2010 750ML ($179.95) $119 special, 18 bottles available
Wine Spectator 97 points “Packed, with layers of charcoal and tar covering the well-endowed core of braised fig, blackberry pâte de fruit and pastis-soaked plum for now. Alder, olive and bay line the finish, with a terrific graphite spine lending support. Best from 2019 through 2030.” WS

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Delas Freres Côte Rôtie Seigneur de Maugiron 2010 750ML ($89.95) $69 special, 36 bottles available
Wine Spectator 94 points “Packed with lots of dark ganache, tapenade, tobacco, blackberry compote and freshly sliced plum fruit flavors, this really courses along with noticeable energy, while bramble, singed bay leaf and charcoal stud the finish dramatically. Best from 2015 through 2027.” WS
Robert Parker 91 points “The 2010 Cote Rotie Seigneur de Maugiron has fleshed out since last year offering notes of black olives, garrigue, licorice, forest floor, bacon fat, raspberries and black currants. This medium-bodied Cote Rotie veers more toward a Burgundy-styled wine than its Syrah-based peers in the Northern Rhone. Two extraordinary wines are the offerings Jacques Grange has fashioned from the Delas Freres holdings in the Cote Brune, the 2011 and 2010 Cote Rotie La Landonne.” RP

Delas Freres Côte Rôtie La Landonne 2010 750ML ($269.95) $219 special, 2 bottles available
Robert Parker 98+ points “Flirting with perfection, the 2010 Cote Rotie La Landonne offers up scents of black truffles, incense, smoked game, creosote, spring flowers and black fruits. Full-bodied with mouth-staining tannin as well as mouth-saturating extract and richness, this powerful, strikingly intense 2010 is young and unevolved, but it is filled with potential. Interestingly, Jacques Grange told me this cuvee was made from 100% destemmed fruit. Forget this wine for 4-5 years, and drink it over the following three decades.” R

Domaine Rene Rostaing Côte Rôtie Cuvee Classique Ampodium 2012 750ML ($79.95) $59 special, 14 bottles available
Wine Advocate 92 points “Starting with Rene’s classic Cote Rotie, the 2012 Cote Rotie Ampodium is a mostly destemmed blend from Rene’s 13 different terroirs. It’s aged in a combination of demi-muid and older barrels, with just 5% being new. It’s smoking base cuvee that does everything right, offering up tons of sweet blackberry, wild herbs, pepper, spice and olive aromas and flavors. Full-bodied, beautifully textured and with impressive concentration, all while stay classic and elegant, it’s a no-brainer purchase and will have 15-20 years of longevity.” WA

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Domaine Rene Rostaing Côte Rôtie Cote Blonde 2011 750ML ($199.95) $169 special, 1 bottle available
Wine Advocate 95 points “As in 2012, the 2011 Cote Rotie Cote Blonde has the most depth and class. More reserved than the La Landonne currently, it yields notions of raspberry, crushed flowers, licorice and spice to go with a full-bodied, backward and beautifully concentrated profile on the palate. Perfectly balanced, with integrated acidity and ample, fine tannin, it should be at its best from 2017-2032.” WA

Domaine Rene Rostaing Côte Rôtie La Landonne 2011 750ML ($169.95) $139 special, 11 bottles available
Wine Advocate 94 points “More substantial, with a meaty, muscular feel, the 2011 Cote Rotie La Landonne exhibits lots of olive tapenade, underbrush, crushed rock and blackberry-styled fruit on the nose. Full-bodied, nicely concentrated (especially for a 2011) and yet voluptuously textured, with moderate, fine tannin, it will round into form relatively early, yet evolve gracefully for 15-20 years.” WA

Domaine Rene Rostaing Côte Rôtie La Landonne 2012 750ML ($159.95) $133 special, 2 bottles available
Wine Advocate 96 points “Getting a big “Wow” in the notes, the 2012 Cote Rotie la Landonne offers additional richness, concentration and depth, with notes of lots of floral and violet notes intermixed with cassis, cruhsed rock and pepper. Full-bodied, concentrated and with building tannin, it needs 4-5 years in the cellar and will keep for 20-25+.” WA

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Saint Cosme Côte Rôtie 2012 750ML ($79.95) $69 special, 2 bottles available
Stephen Tanzer 92-94 points “(made from whole-cluster serine grown in the Cote Brune and aged in a 50/50 combination of new and one-year-old barriques): Brilliant ruby. Smoke-accented cassis and cherry-cola on the nose, with suave floral and Indian spice nuances adding an exotic touch. Sweet dark berry preserve and violet pastille flavors show very good depth, with a peppery, spicy quality emerging with air. In an elegant style, finishing smooth, sweet and very long.” ST
Wine Spectator 93 points “Energetic, with white pepper and alder notes framing a core of racy red currant, blackberry and black cherry fruit. Hints of bay and iron line the back end, where everything streamlines together for a lengthy finish. Approachable now, but could expand with cellaring. Best from 2015 through 2025.”

Côte Rôtie Wines Arriving in March from Domaine Jamet

“There are two successful styles of Côte Rôtie for me. One is the traditional one, of which Jamet, for example, now entirely in Jean-Paul’s hands, is past master. ” -Jancis Robinson

Located high above the town of Ampuis and the Rhône River, Domaine Jamet has become famous for the tiny quantity of stunning Côte-Rôtie they produce. Jean-Paul Jamet and Jean Luc, who took over producing Jamet Cote Rotie from their father Joseph in 1991, divided the work between themselves, and for fifteen years have done much to improve estate, expanding their vineyard holdings and updating wine production. The Jamets have 6 hectares of vines averaging between 25 and 50 years old, and 3 more hectares of young vines recently planted. Yields are kept consistently low, with 75% of fruit coming from the Côte Brune and 25% from the Côte Blonde. The majority of their lieux-dits are on the Côte Brune, whose brown schist soils produce black fruited Syrah, with strong tannic structure, with just two sites on Côte Blonde granite, where the more floral, red fruited Syrah is grown, whose feminine qualities balances the robust Brune fruit when blended into Jamet’s flagship Cote Rotie. This variety of terroir in their wine is key to the balance and complexity found in Jamet’s Cote Rotie, as every year vines are carefully selected from the various sites to craft a wine of elegance and finesse that is the essence of Cote Rotie.This wine is 100 % Syrah and is partially destemmed, with the amount of whole cluster fermentation varying based on the vintage. Total elevage is almost two years before bottling, with at least 20 months in cask, after which the wine is bottled unfined and unfiltered. As of 2013, the Jamet family has made changes in their ownership of the winery, with Jean Paul Jamet remaining as the sole winemaker for Domaine Jamet to continue their family’s tradition of classic Cote Rotie.

Domaine Jamet Côte Rôtie 2012 750ML ($199.95) $169 pre-arrival special
Wine Advocate 96 points “The 2012 Cote Rotie is smoking good and should be up with the top wines from this estate. Inky colored, full-bodied and beautifully concentrated, it offers classic pepper, violets, bacon fat, olive and sweet cassis-like fruits. Opening up with time in the glass, it has the approachable, supple feel of the vintage, yet has more than enough mid-palate depth and fine tannin to keep it drinking beautifully for another two decades.” WA
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 94 points “(15% new oak): Deep ruby. Complex, highly perfumed bouquet evokes fresh red and dark berries, incense, violet and cracked pepper, along with a vibrant mineral overtone. Juicy and focused on the palate, offering intense blackberry, bitter cherry and floral pastille flavors that stretch out slowly with air. This concentrated yet lively Côte-Rôtie finishes with superb clarity and even tannins.” JR

Domaine Jamet Côte Rôtie 2013 750ML ($149.95) $119 pre-arrival special
Domaine Jamet Côte Rôtie 2013 1.5L ($319.95) $279 pre-arrival special
Josh Raynolds–Vinous 93-94 points “Tasted in components: #1, mostly Gerine, all destemmed: Zesty red fruit and floral aromas and flavors, with a mineral element providing spine and lift. Supple and seamless, with strong finishing cling. #2, mostly Gerine again but made with whole clusters: Spicy and precise, with bitter cherry and violet character and a deeper suggestion of licorice emerging with air. #3, a blend of Fontgeant, Leyat, Moutonne and Côte-Baudin: High-pitched red and dark berry scents, with complicating hints of incense, anise and smoky bacon. Very complex in the mouth, with sweet blackberry and cherry flavors picking up a minerally nuance on the finish, with the smoky note repeating. #4, from Le Plomb and Tartaras: Smoky and expansive on the nose and palate, offering black and blue fruit elements and a strong note of spicecake. Concentrated but lithe, finishing with strong thrust and sneaky tannins. #5, from Lancement, Côte-Rozier and Côte-Blonde: Heady, exotically perfumed bouquet of fresh dark fruits, pipe tobacco, Asian spices and incense, with a bright mineral flourish. Sappy, penetrating and pure, communicating excellent power to its sappy black raspberry and bitter cherry flavors. Harmonious and fruit-driven, with outstanding closing thrust. The final blend looks extremely promising, and the wine should show well within a few years of release. Having pretty extensive experience with Jamet’s wines I can vouch for their ability to age, even those from “lesser” vintages.” JR


Arriving Friday!

Paitin di Pasquero-Elia ‘Serra’, Barbaresco DOCG 2012 750ML ($39.95) $29 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 93 points “This is very silky and refined with chocolate, meat and coffee aromas and flavors, but it’s so refined and beautiful. Impressive for its delicate complexity. Drink now or hold.”


Burgundy on the Horizon
Arriving Late February

The Sarrazin domaine is now owned and run by Michel’s two sons, Guy and Jean-Yves. They passionately work their holdings in the tiny and overlooked AOCs of Givry and Maranges. The wines lean toward the earthy-spicy side, with outstanding complexity for the value. The tiny domaine releases omstly red wines from holdings around their home village of Jambles.

Michel Sarrazin et Fils Givry Premier Cru Les Vieilles Vignes 2013 750ML ($39.95) $33 pre-arrival special

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $44.95

Michel Sarrazin et Fils Maranges 2013 750ML ($37.95) $28 pre-arrival special

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $36.99

Michel Sarrazin et Fils Givry Sous La Roche 2013 750ML ($37.95) $28 pre-arrival special
Another Burgundy Pre-Arrival:

Frederic Magnien Chambolle-Musigny Vieilles Vignes 2013 750ML ($59.95) $49 pre-arrival special
Neal Martin – Wine Advocate 89-91 points “The 2013 Chambolle-Musigny Vieilles Vignes has a ripe, quite generous bouquet with “billowing” scents of wild strawberry and raspberry preserve that is well defined. The palate is vibrant on the entry with primal dark cherry and cassis fruit. The tannins feel succulent in the mouth, the acidity quite racy and lending the finish the tension that it needs. This should be very interesting once bottled.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $64