Staff Favorites - Susan Thornett

Susan Thornett
I’ve 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. I’m not a beer expert by any means but we have a great selection here at K&L and I’m having a great time working my way through - hope you can join me!

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2011 Stéphane Ogier Syrah "d'Ogier" Collines Rhodaniennes  
Review Date: 9-30-2014
Ogier is one of the greats of the northern Rhone Valley. This Syrah has a lush texture, cool spiced fruit and a supple finish. Not tannic but still structured, it coats the palate but never overwhelms. This is truly one of the most complete Syrahs in the store.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Ponzi "Tavola" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir  
Review Date: 9-28-2014
For anyone interested in reading more about West Coast Pinot Noirs, I'd strongly recommend Pacific Pinot Noir by John Winthrop Haeger, an exhaustively rich tome guaranteed to enhance your pleasure while delighting in a favorite bottle. I discovered, for instance, that Dick Ponzi of Ponzi Vineyards started out as an aeronautical engineer and once designed rides for Disneyland before re-venturing into his first love, winemaking, way back in 1969. His vibrantly talented and energetic daughter Luisa has been the winemaker since 1993, and her mastery of the nuances of their various vineyards in Willamette Valley is evident in this balanced, artfully-blended Pinot Noir. Bright fruits scintillate in the glass, revealing generous aromas and flavors of lush plums, black cherries, fresh violets and cola, with supple tannins and a touch of spice on the finish. A wonderful, generously mouthwatering everyday Pinot for sharing with fine friends and family. Drink up!
Top Value!

2012 Ponzi "Tavola" Willamette Valley Pinot Noir  
Review Date: 9-26-2014
One of the prettiest wines in all of Oregon! We got to taste this wine in the winery and visit their new facility and I'm excited about what Luisa and Maria are accomplishing! This particular wine has such rich round fruit, and lovely flowers on the first inhale! On the palate is a rich, ripe, succulent fruit with just a hint of herbal undertones. The finish comes off without a hitch and extends long and focused with a subtle spice to it. A lovely effort, and a killer value all wrapped up in one delicious package.

2012 Frog's Leap Rutherford Estate Cabernet Sauvignon   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 9-25-2014
Dark currant, rose petal, black olive, anise, cedar and dusty, earthy flavors are already showing in this young Cabernet. This wine is structured for the long haul, but is so clean and balanced you will love drinking it at any age.
Price: $49.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 La Monacesca Verdicchio di Matelica  
Review Date: 9-24-2014
This 2012 Verdicchio di Matelica, is a very good example for the vintage. Offers crisp and refreshing citric fruit flavors and aromas with the characteristic touch of green herbs, is a wonderful value, a well rounded wine, beautifully structured, soft on the palate but with a slight suggestion of almond (typical for Verdicchio), a great autumn sipping wine and is very food-friendly.
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 La Monacesca Verdicchio di Matelica (1.5L)  
Review Date: 9-24-2014
This 2012 Verdicchio di Matelica, is a very good example for the vintage. Offers crisp and refreshing citric fruit flavors, and aromas with the characteristic touch of green herbs, is a wonderful value, a well-rounded wine, beautifully structured, soft on the palate but with a slight suggestion of almond (typical for Verdicchio), a great autumn sipping wine and is very food-friendly.
Price: $34.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Erik Banti "Carato" Toscana  
Review Date: 9-24-2014
I just opened this for our staff tasting recently and this little “Tuscan blend” stopped the show, with lots of oohs and ahhs from my coworkers. This wine has lots of bang for the buck (or EURO, very tough to beat these days). Medium–bodied with dark fruit, good acidity and a really long finish.
Price: $7.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Erik Banti "Carato" Toscana (1.5L)  
Review Date: 9-24-2014
I just opened this for our staff tasting recently and this little “Tuscan blend” stopped the show, with lots of oohs and ahhs from my coworkers. This wine has lots of bang for the buck (or EURO, very tough to beat these days). Medium–bodied with dark fruit, good acidity and a really long finish. A mag for $15 bucks! Grab these while you can!!!
Price: $14.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Clot de l'Origine Macabeu "l'Original" Blanc  
Review Date: 9-24-2014
I am loving the wines of Marc Barriot. They are pure, fresh and expressive of their varietal character. They also have a distinctive edge. This white sees skin contact for two weeks, making it an "orange wine." It has lovely aromatics of peach pit, persimmon, honey and flowers. The skin contact gives it a distinctive texture adding body and complexity to the wine. If you have never tried this style before this is the perfect one to start with. Serve it with fresh cheeses, herb salad and maybe a walnut and eggplant spread.
Price: $21.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2012 Vasse Felix Chardonnay Margaret River Western Australia   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 9-23-2014
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Once again delivering amazing quality for a very reasonable price. This is CLASSY Chard that is a real benchmark for the Margaret River region if not Australia as a whole. The wine has a beautiful balance of golden baked orchard fruits and some riper stone fruit aromas and flavors. Subtle toasty oak notes and some lovely nutty, brioche lees characters add complexity and texture. Very long and persistent on the finish. That classic Margaret River stoney minerality and saline quality coming through in spades. I think this is one of the most serious and well-made Chardonnays in the world at this price point. Super versatile with the holiday season quickly approaching, this has a bit of something for everyone!
Top Value! Drink from 2014 to 2020

2012 Vasse Felix Chardonnay Margaret River Western Australia  
Review Date: 9-23-2014
The 2012 Vasse Felix "regular" Chardonnay is simply a beautifully crafted wine. Aromas of pear, Fuji apple, lemon blossom, jasmine, lightly toasted hazelnut and a flinty mineral note leap from the glass. On the palate, there is a perfect integration of fruit and the nine months in French oak the wine sees along with a focused juicy acid line through the wine that delivers a long finish that just makes you want more. No wonder winemaker Virgina Willcock and Vasse Felix were named winemaker and winery of the year in 2012 by Wine & Spirits magazine!

2012 La Monacesca Verdicchio di Matelica   | Public Pending Approval
Review Date: 9-23-2014
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Amazing wine. Hard to fathom this combination of soft, rich, ripe texture, stunning purity, defined structure and piercing minerality all rolled into one. This wine is so unique and multidimensional. Very versatile and crowd-friendly and yet interesting enough for the "wine geek" inside all of us! Nice work Greg!
Top Value!
Price: $17.99 Add To Cart BC 0

2013 Mount Trio Sauvignon Blanc Great Southern  
Review Date: 9-23-2014
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If you're looking for an alternative to the grassy Kiwi styled SVB this is your wine. Very clean, bright but more fig aromas than grass, it has nice balance and a compelling, fresh finish.
Drink from 2014 to 2016
Price: $11.99 Add To Cart JH 92 BC 0

2012 Vasse Felix Chardonnay Margaret River Western Australia  
Review Date: 9-23-2014
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For lovers of California Chardonnay, this is an excellent wine with subtle toasty oak aromatics and a pliant texture on your palate, however it has so much more than that, the wine is fresh, has vibrant apple skin and leesy flavors and superb acidic structure. A real bargain at this price, and one of Western Australia's finest producers.
Drink from 2014 to 2017

2012 Joseph Jewell Russian River Valley Pinot Noir  
Review Date: 9-22-2014
I first brought in the Joseph Jewell wines back in the 2009 vintage. I always thought the wine was well made and our customers have always enjoyed them. The 2012 Russian River has reached new heights for the winery. A very feminine style of Russian River Pinot Noir with lovely cherry fruit, baking spice and just a hint of vanilla and cedar. Earthy notes show nicely throughout the mouth and the generous acidity weaves well through the lovely ripe fruit. Adrian and Micah have added another notch on their belt with this one.
Price: $27.99 Add To Cart W&S 95 BC 0

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