This month's top picks
Rounding the seasonal bend
Take away the tinsel and there's all the more reason to greet the season ...
Ever since humans first took note of the passing seasons and looked to explain the amazing things that transpired with the rhythm of those changes, every single culture has celebrated the days bookending the winter solstice and the passing of that astronomical milestone.
We'd do ourselves a favor by taking a lesson from all that history — and taking pause to celebrate what's truly important as we get set for another lap around the sun. Start by taking pause to warp your brain around how wise the ancients truly were. Then, gather with your family, your friends, your favorite food and drink — and raise a glass of something delicious to the all that goodness.
Happy Solstice, Saturnalia, Yule, Sacaea, Sol Invictus, Chanukah, Lenaea, Kwanzaa, Christmas ... life is short, make every glass count!
Alto Los Romeros Chardonnay — $10
You just can't beat this lively, luscious chardonnay for easy drinkability and bang for the buck. Clean, crisp fruit with a lemony edge, a hint of cool stones, plenty of texture and a satisfying finish.
Alto Los Romeros Carmenère — $10
Bright, sassy blueberry and cherry fruit are the main themes here, with a nice accent of berry skin, dusty stones and pepper.
Alto Los Romeros Cabernet Sauvignon — $10
As cabernet as cabernet can be. A whirl of blackberry and cassis flavors with lovely overtones of brambles and sun-warmed blackberry leaves. Great, everyday go-to vino!
Felines–Jourdan Picpoul de Pinet — $11.50
Racy and elegant at once, with soft aromas of salt air-tinged citrus and starfruit. Charming, refreshing and oh-so delicious.
Felines–Grenache Syrah IGP — $9
This wine is no Big Deal - and that's a good thing. What it is, is just a great bottle of wine — fresh, bursting with luscious cherry, raspberry, coastal herbs, pepper and spice.
Felines–Jourdan Languedoc Rouge — $12
This alluring blend of grenache and syrah is foreshadowed by aromas of wild berries and violets which segue to perfectly ripe, bright flavors of raspberry and cherry, with a chorus of minerals, garrigues and a kiss of coastal breeze.
Antech chardonnay Vin de Pays d'Oc — $11
How delicious is this? From its effusive but delicate aromas, to notes of white flowers, apple and subtle hints of citurs (grapefruit), it's generous, well-balanced and almost too easy to drink — and downright delicious!
Friends in far-away places
Durigutti Malbec — $15.50
Walking a fine line between elegance and down-to-earth, blue collar character, this iis all about lush blackberry and plum fruit, with accents of wild herbs and strawberries. Bang for the buck, defined.
Badia a Coltibuono "Bennone" Chianti Classico organically grown — $16
There's really nothing quite like quality Chianti — of which this wine just happens to be an amazing example. Soul, character and the epitome of deliciousness.
Tenuta Sant'Antonio Valpolicella "Monti Garbi" Ripasso — $16.50
Valpolicella! All charming cherry and ripe red fruits, laced with hints of truffle, earth and spice. A gem. (Arriving mid-December)
Château de Rey Côtes de Roussillon Rouge "Sisquo" — $15
Brightness and darkness, all in one sip. Dark berries and stone fruit shine with the brilliance of the Mediterranean sun that nourished them. (Arriving mid-December)
Château de Rey Muscat de Rivesaltes — $17.50
A kiss of bottled sunshine! Ultra pure, elegantly focused muscat flavors express the sweetness of perfectly ripe fruit yet still dance with delicate, almost dry balance. (Arriving mid-December)
Cécile Chassagne Gigondas — $22.50
C'est chouette! What's not to love? The soul of the southern Rhône-ripe cherries and wild black raspberries accented seamlessly woven with notes of stones, pepper and wild, savory herbs.
There's no taste like home ...
Lady Hill "Procedo" cabernet franc — $21
Bold strokes of plum and ripe blackberries are accented with notes of bay leaf, blackberry leaf, violets and dried herbs. Superbly balanced, crisp, sturd and sleek. Gorgeous!
Terra Blanca "Signature Series" cabernet sauvignon — $35
Think blackberry, cedar, black tea and blackberry leaf wrapped around a core of ultra pure cassis notes Beautifully polished, gracefully balanced, this is Washington at its best. Available at Issaquah, Fremont, Edmonds and Redmond only. (Arriving mid-December)
Terra Blanca "Signature Series" syrah — $35
Astounding. Really. Dark dark fruits, infused with noptes of savory herb, bacon fat, minerals and still more savory tones. Crazy good. Available at Issaquah, Fremont, Edmonds and Redmond only. (Arriving mid-December)
Terra Blanca "Onyx" Red Wine — $50
Classic Red Mountain intensity and focus with robust, finely sculpted structure. Brilliant red and black fruit essences are accented with notes of earth, savory herbs and perfectly integrated oak. Impressive! Available at Issaquah, Fremont, Edmonds and Redmond only. (Arriving mid-December)
Fizz–festive and frugal (fa-la-la!)
Giro Ribot Cava Brut — $12.50
Lovely! Alluring aromas of lemon blossom and citrus fruit offer an invitation to luscious sips of dry, but generous white peach and lemon fruit.
Antech Blanquete de Limoux — $13.50
The traditional blend of mauzac and chenin blanc renders a lovely alliance of fruit and focus, with aromas of spring flowers that segue to a palate of ripe, but crisp fruits with a hint of green apple and fruit blossoms.
Medici Ermete Lambrusco Secco — $12.50
That's right, Lambrusco - real Lambrusco. Yet another of Emilia-Romagna's gifts to our mouths and souls. Ripe blackcaps, dark hints of rhubarb, a savory kiss, a veil of bubbles ...
Trevisiol Prosecco "puntoevirgola" — $16
Here's a delicious reminder that effervescence is always appropriate! Think of it as great white wine, with the added dimension lent by fine fizz — a key ingredient in a truly dolce vita.
Vinska Klet "Peneca" Sparkling Rebula — $16
Sparkling rebula, who knew? From Slovenia's Brda region, this lively, lovely bottle of fizz is an exposition of very crisp, very dry pear and lemon-leaning citrus fruit, with a drop of lemon confection and just a suggestion of a savory note.
Nothing sparkles like Champagne!
Delahaie Brut Premier — $29.50
We've outdone even our own standards with this lovely, lovely Champagne. Crisp, fresh aromas of perfectly An extraordinary value!
Voirin–Jumel Brut Tradition — $32.50
Rich, brilliantly focused notes of lemon confection and orange peel are woven with hints of freshly-baked brioche and hints of white flowers. Assertive, robust and elegant - a superb bottle of bubbles!
Delahaie Brut Rosé — $39.50
Our good friend Murielle Claudel describes this wine as "discreet, yet abundant." Which describes it perfectly - dry, lacy, almost ethereal, poised like a dancer. This wine is its own reason to celebrate
Chartogne–Taillet "Cuvée Ste. Anne" Brut NV — $39.50
Think of sweet citrus honey, sprinkled with a confectioner's dusting of dry cherry essence. Then, lemon drops, still more cherry and fine mineral dust, incredibly pure, bone-dry fruit that both teases and satisfies the palate.
Gaston Chiquet "Tradition" Brut NV — $42.50
Pure pleasure in the mouth, it dances on the palate, with delicate but persistent bubbles that accent a hint of raspberry essence in the finish.
Pierre Peters "Cuvée de Réserve" Blanc de Blancs — $49.50
Pure chardonnay fruit expressed as lemon pith, bright apple and a whiff of apricot ride an undercurrent of minerals while hints of herb and yeast round out a lovely, lovely glass of fizz. Available at Issaquah, Fremont, Edmonds and Redmond only.
Ale to your hoppiness!
Pike Brewing "Auld Acquaintance" — $4.50 22 oz
Toast your health and hoppiness with this Cascadian nod to traditional Wassail. Notes of orange peel, coriander, cinnamon and nutmeg join the chorus of bitter, sweet, sipcy goodness.
Schooner Exact "Hoppy Holidays" — $8 34-oz returnable bottle
Rich, dark, earthy aromas and hints of chocolate, dark fruits and toasty malt are assertively laced with a streak of citrusy, piney, well-balanced hop notes. Big, bold and satisfying, but crisp, well-balanced and agile. A key ingredient to holiday hoppiness!
Fremont "Bonfire" Ale — $10 6-pack cans
Brewed in the Center of the Universe and bottled to bring you good cheer with its smoky, hoppy, IPA-ish., loveliness. Amen and drink up.
Left Hand "Fade to Black" — $11 6 pack
Welcome the return of darkness with an amazing black rye ale! Aromas of dark coffee, maple wood and dark agave nectar fade to notes of nut bread, molasses and a hint of licorice and a finish of black pepper and earthy hops ...
Chinook Wines and PCC team up with Long Live the Kings!
When we talk about our favorite Washington wineries, you can always assume that Chinook wines is at the top of the list. For thirty years, they've been producing some of the state's most elegant, honest, expressive wines.
We're especially pleased to ally with Kay and Clay to offer PCC customers two exclusive blends to support Long Live the Kings! in their work to restore and protect wild steelhead and salmon habitat — two iconic, native species that are key parts of the health of our northwest environment.
So drink some of the Northwest's most delicious wine and help PCC, Chinook and Long Live the Kings! protect wild salmon and steelhead!
Chinook Yakima Valley White Wine Long Live the Kings — $14
Fetching flavors of creamy lemon, bright green apple and crisp Asian pear trade solos, accompanied by notes of wild rush brush and a core of cool minerals and bright acidity.
Chinook Yakima Valley Red Wine Long Live the Kings — $17
Generous, perfectly ripe red and black fruits are led by bright notes of cherry, with notes of tea leaf, baking spice and wild brush adding harmonies.
Thirsty for more?
Get to know PCC Beer and Wine Merchandiser Jeff Cox through Notes from the Cellar, a chronicle of his adventures in and ruminations on wine.
The fine print:
All tasting notes are written by the PCC wine team, except where attributed otherwise — and in those cases, we wholeheartedly agree, and simply couldn't say it any better ourselves.