Staff Favorites - Susan Thornett

Susan Thornett
Iíve been with K&L since summer 2007, moving to retail from a restaurant background. I love coming up with fun food and wine pairings! I tend to enjoy and review wines that convey something interesting about their region of origin, and I usually prefer subtle, savoury wines. That said, dessert wines are always a particular weakness of mine! Often my reviewed wines- aperitif, main course or pudding- will be from France, Germany, or Austria. You will also see me recommending heaps of beers- so if you always dreamed of having a personal beer sommelier you can sign up for that. My ideal beer is a crispy English session ale but I enjoy exploring many different styles, from Californian double IPAs to sour Belgian Gueuzes. Iím not a beer expert by any means but we have a great selection here at K&L and Iím having a great time working my way through - hope you can join me!

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2012 Arterberry Maresh "Maresh Vineyard" Dundee Hills Pinot Noir  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
The Maresh Vineyard Dundee Hills Pinot Noir from Arterberry Maresh is the purest example of Oregon Pinot Noir that we have at K&L. It has the perfect dark cherry fruit on the nose and silky texture that I associate with the best of this estate's wines. If you are curious to see how good these wines can get, check this bottle out!
Price: $54.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Charles Trosset Mondeuse "Prestige des Arpents" Vin de Savoie-Arbin  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
Mondeuse has become one of my favorite reds. It has the spice box qualities you find in aged Syrah, the tobacco of old school Grenache and the floral lifted qualities of crazy northern Italian reds. Trosset is a genius with the grape and makes one of the best. It's like walking into a Penzey's Spices. It's floral with violets and lavender, spicy with pink peppercorns, crazy with celery seed and meaty enough and fruity enough to keep it from being too dramatic. Give this a shot, you won't regret it.
Price: $24.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Melville "Estate" Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 7-29-2014
Winemaker Greg Brewer has presented us with another great vintage for the Melville Estate Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir. Melville is consistently good from year to year, but the 2012 is incredibly impressive and exceptional. Aromas and flavors of wild strawberry, raspberry, light cinnamon spice, lavender, and floral notes make this a compelling wine. Melville fans should not miss this very enjoyable bottling.

2012 Trefethen Estate Napa Valley Dry Riesling   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 7-29-2014
Is it getting toasty in here, or is it the Trefethen Dry Riesling? This Riesling is just beginning to show its more intriguing side; the 2013 is already coming out, so snap up the 2012 while you can if you want to see what this south Napa Valley Riesling can do with just a little bit of age on it--ideally, you'd want to follow this over a few more years. To read the critics' comments from 2013, above, you'd think this was just another, albeit nicely done, fresh and fruity California Riesling. Well, in a way, but at this point the aromas are of toasty, Meyer lemon marmalade and fresh pear...cast in bronze, with Buddha's Hand citrus infused in honeycomb; off in the distance, the petrol is approaching. Dry-ish but gaining weight. For me, this is respectable Riesling because it's not tutti-fruitti, nor is it an overly restrained, simply crisp and floral/floury version, like some (dude, there's Pinot Grigio for that). This has personality.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2010 Louis Magnin Gamay Vin de Savoie  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
From one of Savoieís greatest producers, this is one of the most fascinating and complex Gamays you are likely to drink. This holds its own amongst Beaujolais greats like Foillard and Thevenet. This has a beautiful core of wild strawberry fruit with subtle game and earthy nuances. Donít think of this as a substitute for great Beaujolais, itís entirely its own thing and well worth the price.
Price: $36.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2010 Chehalem "Stoller Vineyard" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
What an unbelievable value! The Stoller Vineyard from Chehalem is an ambitious, top level Pinot Noir that we are offering at a spectacular price. It has a generous bouquet of new leather and dried cherry and an incredibly silky texture. It takes time to get balance like this, and the extra few years have made all the difference. I can't wait to have this with some duck confit!
Top Value! Drink from 2014 to 2025

2012 Franck Peillot "Altesse" Roussette de Bugey-Montagnieu  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
Peillot as a producer is truly special. You would pay $50-$100 for wines of the caliber in Burgundy and yet for $23, you get something authentic and unique. This has beautiful quince notes with candied apple flavors. This is a wine of length and finesse. The region of Bugey-Montagnieu is famous for the Poulet de la Bresse, a chicken that has its own regional designation. I can think of nothing better than a beautiful roasted bird to go with this wine.
Price: $22.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 JP & JF Quťnard "Anne de la Biguerne" Vin de Savoie-Chignin  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
One of the most serious Jacqueres (that's the grape variety) we have here. Great weight with lemon oil and creamy notes. It's like a lemon curd pie without the overt tartness. If you're not drinking Savoie whites, you need to be.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Ferrero Toscana Rosso  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
A perfect marriage of fruit and oak, this beautifully balanced Tuscan red is big, rich, and intense with tons of ripe, dark fruit and fine, silky tannins. Lots to admire here, and at a very attractive price. Drinkable now, and should continue to develop for several years yet.
Price: $16.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2011 Poggio al Tufo Cabernet Sauvignon  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
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The 2011 vintage in Tuscan produced a lot of richness in the wine including Poggio al Tufoís excellent Cabernet value. Aged for a year in large 65hl Slavonian oak barrels this wine has the ripeness of California Cabernet while having a more focused center, longer finish than anything Iíve seen in this price range you could buy from California. Supple, rich, smooth with lots of ripe cassis, hints of tarragon and a touch of fresh leather, a long finish but what really remains with you is the palate richness, this is a mouthful without being overripe and only 13% alcohol. Youíll love the drinkability of this wine and it will pair nicely with grilled meats or even just Cabernet Cocktailing!
Drink from 2014 to 2017
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart WS 91 BC 0

2011 Poggio al Tufo "Rompicollo"  
Review Date: 7-29-2014
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OK, that may seem like a very high score for a wine of this price category, but I adjusted it for the value and this wine is just an outstanding value. Rompicollo - Breakneck in Italian - is a coastal Super Tuscan of impeccable quality, it is a blend of 60% Sangiovese and 40% Cabernet Sauvignon aged in big 65hl barrels from grapes harvested from a vineyard with southern exposure and mostly volcanic soil. The aromatics tell you right away this is a serious wine; the fresh, focused Sangiovese fruit is cherry like and coupled with the Cabernet's earth and cassis filled flavors just fills your nose with anticipation. On the palate the richness of the Cabernet is lengthened by the Sangioveseís acidity creating a very long finish filled with spice, fruit and earth while still maintaining a textural richness on the palate. This is a wine that will age well for another 5 years and be just a stunning value at that time, but youíll have to buy a lot because it is just so darn good to drink right now. Buy a caseÖno better make it two cases, itís great.
Drink from 2014 to 2019
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart WS 92 BC 0

2013 Charles Smith "Kung Fu Girl" Columbia Valley Riesling   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 7-28-2014
I like Riesling with a little something to it, you know, a little steely, limey, slightly diesel-stinky crunchy toasty marmalade to it; I like South Australian Riesling. The Brooks 2009 Willamette Valley that we had a while back, that was nice. I've hesitated to check out the Kung Fu Girl for years, because, you know, hip label, but what's it really got? Surprisingly a lot. Peach and pineapple fruit, yes, and maybe a little golden raisin, but a right limey seriousness to it. I wouldn't be surprised if this got more interesting in two years but it's delicious now; a little off-dry but totally balanced.
Price: $9.99 Add To Cart RP 90 BC 0

2012 Louis-Antoine Luyt Carignan "Trequilemu" Maule Valley   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 7-28-2014
If you like earthy, dirty, mineral-driven wines, this is the wine for you. I adore this Carignan, itís very green with notes of bell pepper and jalapenos, scorched earth, iron and forest floor. The winemaker, a native Burgundian whose vineyards are still plowed by horse, uses a very hands-off approach, producing natural wines that are complex and terroir-driven. This is definitely my Chilean favorite.
Price: $19.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 John Duval "Entity" Shiraz Barossa Valley South Australia  
Review Date: 7-28-2014
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This is a Barossa Shiraz that isn't overly extracted, overly ripe or overly alcoholic. You might think that's a lot of overlys... well you'd be right and it is why I'm so impressed with this wine. My Barossa experience has been full of wines that are way too sappy for my palate, but this wine's bracing acidity and properly stated alcohol level is refreshing. You still get that Barossa power but with more focus; the flavors are cleaner and fresher and you still get that supple, textural richness that is Barossa. I'm thinking BBQ'd ribs would be just the match for this fascinating wine.
Drink from 2014 to 2018

2012 Raccaro Malvasia Collio   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 7-28-2014
What a complex and well-done Malvasia! The Roccaro boasts notes of Fuji apples and honeysuckle with a brightness and crisp acidity coming across on the palate with zesty lemon rind notes balanced by a waxy texture and some sweeter stone fruits. An absolutely beautiful expression of Malvasia.
Price: $39.99 Add To Cart BC 0

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