por wine house

Wine - Whiskey - Beer - Tapas - Restaurant

Monday: CLOSED FOR WINTER -   Tuesday: 4:00pm to 10:00pm

Wednesday: 4:00pm to 10:00pm   -   Thursday: 4:00pm to 10:00pm

Friday: 4:00pm to 11:00Pm   -   Saturday: 4:00pm to 11:00Pm

Sunday: 4:00pm to 9:00pm

/pôr/ wine house has filled a nitch in Louisville that so desperately needed to be filled by providing an environment in which you can enjoy a glass of wine and feel like you have been transported to another place. Our wine house is situated just steps off main street, but somehow feel miles away from the bustle of cars and people. Often times our guests will tell us that they feel like it reminds them of a place they visited while on vacation in Europe, and that is what we enjoy most; that people feel like they are on vacation while dinning at /pôr/ wine house. What's more, we have an exceptional offering of wines on tap, with 14 different wines by the glass to choice from, we have something for everyone. /pôr/ wine house also prides itself on always having at least one Sommelier on staff to help develop our wine list, as well as guide our guest thought their wine drinking experience. All told, /pôr/ wine house is as unique as Louisville, CO itself, and will continue to delight those that wonder down our little brick path. 

Why You Should Pay More for Champagne (And What to Buy When You Can't)

Valentine's day. Easter. Halloween. New Year's Eve. What do all these holidays have in common? They each drive some of the highest yearly consumption of a single product. As we approach the end of the year, Champagne dominates the wine media headlines. Everyone wants to know what to drink at New Year's and heaven forbid us journalists leave our readers wanting for advice.

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Just as with the so-called "rosé season" annually proclaimed to exist somewhere between the end of May and the beginning of September, the intense interest in Champagne this time of year leaves me somewhat bemused. Like rosé, Champagne ought to be drunk year-round in copious quantities, simply because it is some of the most food-friendly, versatile wine on the planet.

Everyone is willing to make a toast on New Year's or at a wedding with a glass of bubbly, but a lot of people don't drink it much more often than that. One of the reasons that I believe more Champagne does not get consumed year-round is that many people don't like the way it tastes.

Nor should they. A lot of Champagne is bitter and nasty. In part, this (at least for me) explains the current boom in Cava and Prosecco consumption here in the United States, as these two sparkling wines from Spain and northern Italy historically tend towards the sweeter end of the spectrum, and are a lot easier on the American palate.

Like many consumers, it took a long time for me to enjoy Champagne. Not because it is particularly an acquired taste, but because more than with many other styles of wine, you really get what you pay for. For years in my early adulthood, I would confidently tell people that I didn't care for Champagne. To my amazement one day, I found out what I really meant was that I didn't care for cheap Champagne. You see, I had just never had any of the good stuff.

Generalizations are dangerous in any domain or discourse, but I've found few things in the wine world more reliably true than what I'm about to tell you. You need to pay at least $40 to get a good bottle of Champagne. Have I had good bottles that cost less? Absolutely. When I find them, like the stuff made by Ayala that you can find as cheap as $32 a bottle, I tend buy them by the dozen.

But if you're able to pay $50, $60, or even $70 a bottle for Champagne, you can put yourself onto an entirely different plane of taste, texture, and experience.

Why is good Champagne so expensive, and why would it be worth paying for? I'll do my best to answer this question, and if paying so much for a bottle of bubbly is a non-starter for you, just stick with me and I'll tell you where to go looking for decent bubbly that won't break the bank.

Any good wine, made with an artisan approach, won't be cheap purely because to make good wine costs money. Leaving aside the cost of the land itself, which in some regions (such as Napa) all but guarantees wines will never fall below a certain price point, the labor and equipment required to make wine is expensive. Vineyards take a lot of skilled labor to maintain and keep healthy. From tractors to the buildings that house the barrels to the barrels themselves, the equipment used to make wine costs a lot of money. And then there's cash flow. If you're going to age your wine, as is helpful to make fine wine of all kinds, then you not only need to buy barrels and pay for vineyard labor for the year you're going to put into the bottle, but before you sell that wine, you may need to do the same for the next vintage, and the next. And of course, you need to pay rent on wherever you're going to keep those three years of barrels while you're waiting for the wine to be ready to go into the bottle.

And that's just for a nice bottle of Cabernet. Sparkling wine ends up being a bit more complicated.

Of course, you can just make some early-picked wine, stir in some sugar to cut the acidity and then carbonate it, which, if you'll forgive that description's brevity, is how most cheap sparkling wine is made. But this doesn't make for much more than a glass of bubbles that tastes vaguely like wine. If you want to make Champagne, or sparkling wine in the traditional method that region pioneered, you need to ferment the wine twice: first in barrels or tanks to turn your early-picked grapes into a highly acidic wine known as vin clair, and then a second time in individual bottles with a dollop of yeast that will create the bubbles under the seal of a crown cap (like you'd use to close a bottle of Coke®).

And then, according to your desire for flavor and quality, you may age that wine "on the lees" (in contact with that yeast residue) for many years. During that time, you'll also need to riddle each bottle, a process that involves (either by hand or machine) turning the bottle in special racks to accumulate that yeast residue into the neck so that when it comes time, you can disgorge the yeast, top up the bottle and put in the final cork. Some of the best Champagnes are aged in their bottles for more than a decade before they are released for sale. This extended aging (known as tirage) can turn a good wine into a transcendent one. Of course, there's more to Champagne than extended tirage. Some of the best wines being made today aren't, in fact, aged for very long in the bottle, but instead are the products of impeccable farming, masterful blending and increasingly, very specific sites.

But back to my point. The labor, storage space and time required to make a good Champagne simply costs more. And then in the case of Champagne (and other imported wines), the bottles need to be shipped across the Atlantic in temperature controlled shipping containers and then imported into the US after paying the requisite taxes.

And lets face it, when you're paying for Champagne, no matter which producer you're buying, you're also paying a brand premium. The word "Champagne" itself adds to the price of the wine, just as much as the word "Napa" does. That premium is reflected in the price of the land, housing, and the overall cost of doing business in the region.

No wonder, then, that it's nearly impossible to find a Champagne that costs less than $20 and, in my opinion, few really good ones that cost less than $40. While of course there are exceptions, the wines from Champagne that manage to break that $40 barrier are often made from lower quality grapes, farmed in an almost brutal way with excessive use of pesticides and herbicides, aged for the minimum amount of time possible and then dosed with a bit of sweetness in an attempt to balance the wine out. The result is a wine with nice bubbles often followed by a sweet and bitter bite that can be a bit cloying to start, and end up finishing harsh and angular after a few seconds. While it doesn't fully fit that description, the Champagne that many people splurge on, Veuve Cliquot with its distinctive orange label, represents a poor value at $50 or more per bottle, and offers a good counterpoint to my generalization. Just because you're paying more than $40 per bottle, you aren't guaranteed to get something good.

If you manage to spring for something north of $40, instead of the mass produced brand names like Veuve Cliquot, you should instead drink wines like the NV Pierre Peters "Cuvee de Reserve" at $49 a bottle, or the NV Philipponat Brut Royal Reserveat $45.

If you can spend more, though, you can experience the magic of what Champagne truly has to offer, from the incredible minerality of a NV Frederic Savart "l'Accomplie Premier Cru" Brut ($60) or 2004 Pascal Douquet Mesnil sur Oger Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs ($80); to the freshly baked brioche richness that can only come from extended tirage in the likes of a Krug Grand Cuvee ($145) or a Taittinger Comtes de Champagne Blanc de Blancs ($114).

But if you (quite understandably) can't bring yourself to spend that much on a bottle of bubbles, I've got you covered. Of course, Champagne isn't the only place that makes great (and expensive) sparkling wines. Good sparkling wine gets made in many of the world's wine regions. Some of the best California sparkling wines and Italian sparkling wines now command the same kinds of prices as do Champagne. But even in these regions, as well as some other spots around the globe, decent bottles of bubbles can be found for less than $30. The reasons these places and producers can make less expensive sparkling wine range from the simple economic realities of lower land prices and cheaper grapes, to less rigorous aging regimens and simply less recognition on the world stage.

Whatever the reason, thankfully the wide world of wine, skillfully navigated, can make up for the lack of decent cheap Champagne.

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Let's start with the far-ff corner of France known as the Savoie, where one of my favorite wine producers in the world, Dominique Belluard also happens to make a little bit of sparkling wine from the Gringet grape variety found in the region. His NV Belluard "Les Perles de Mont Blanc" will set you back a mere $25, and its a wonderful crushed stone and apple/pear mouthful that is unlike anything you've ever had before.

Chenin Blanc is one of the hot grapes right now amongst sommeliers and wine geeks, but the focus generally remains on the dry and off-dry versions produced in France's Loire Valley. Less well known are the sparkling wines made from the same grape, but all the better for anyone looking for a wine that drinks well above its weight. Benchmark producer Domaine Huet makes a positively stellar version that goes for a song. Find the NV Domaine Huet Petillant Brut for around $23.

Still in France, Alsace is known for its Rieslings and Gewürztraminers, but insiders know that it grows decent Pinot Noir and Pinot Blanc as well, some of which gets made into a sparkling wine known as Cremant d'Alsace. In my experience the best examples of this wine are actually the rosés, such as the reasonably easy to find NV Pierre Sparr Cremant d'Alsace Rosé ($19).

Much of what Spain's Cava region produces is unremarkable, but quality producers have begun to make names for themselves, perhaps none more so than Raventos i Blanc, who produce some of the best Cavas I've ever had the pleasure of tasting. Their 2015 Raventos i Blanc "L'Hereu" Brut is an absolute steal at $19 a bottle.

Finally, while the best Italian sparkling wines are unfortunately just as expensive as the best Champagnes these days, a few producers are making really high quality sparking wines that trade at reasonable tariffs. Among my favorites is Ferrari, whose vintage Ferrari Perle Brut can be enjoyed for somewhere around $30 or $35.

And last, but certainly not least, there's the wine I recommend whenever anyone asks the nearly impossible question, "How can I drink decent sparkling wine for under $20 a bottle?" More than a few weddings have avoided bankruptcy by using the Roederer Estate Brut from Mendocino's Anderson Valley for their wedding toasts. It's hard to imagine how Roederer manages to produce such a consistently drinkable bottle for under $15, but they do, and very few California sparkling wines even twice the cost approach its quality.

I hope you enjoy your toasts at the end of the year, but more importantly, I hope you'll manage to discover some sparkling wines that will keep you drinking the bubbles long after the first of the year. If you haven't explored the charms of Champagne with your fried chicken, or sparkling wine with your popcorn, well then you've got some further resolutions to make.

There’s a better way to enjoy wine by the glass.

There are many benefits of choosing wine on tap, from environmental friendliness to wine quality.

  • Guaranteed Fresh

With wine on tap, you never have to worry about an open bottle decreasing in quality and losing flavor profiles. Wine in keg stays fresh, from the first glass to last. There is no oxidation, no corkage, no spoilage.

  • No more wasted wine!

No oxidation = no wasted wine = no wasted money! There is nothing to recycle or throw away. Wine on tap is the most cost effective option for your by-the-glass program.

  • More premium options

There are over 150 wineries & over 250 premium wine brands available on tap. Find your favorites here.

PLUS decreased cost at the distributor level means a bigger discount for consumers!

  • Speed of service

No time wasted pulling corks, recycling bottles or throwing away waste. Simply tap & pour the freshest, best tasting wines!

  • Green Value – 96% reduction in carbon footprint

Kegs offer a 96% reduction in carbon footprint compared to wine poured from bottles over 20 years. Just one stainless steel keg sequesters the same amount of CO2 as 28 trees! Plus, each keg put into service saves 2,340 lbs of trash from the landfill over its lifetime. Click here to see our Green Guide!

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Cooler Weather Promises Photo Finish for Northwest Harvest

Cooler weather arrives; water concerns alleviated by spring rainfall
 

Eugene, Ore.—A sudden drop in temperatures means fall is taking hold in much of the Northwest as growers press on with harvest of the 2016 wine grape crop. July broke the 14-month series of record-setting temperatures both domestically as well as globally, and early fears of late-season drought conditions setting in have been dampened by precipitation that’s dropped between 90% and 150% of normal rainfall from southern Oregon to the northern Rockies. “The estate is entirely dry farmed. We saw some stress by the end of last year, whereas this year the canopies are a lot more lush and green,” Ray Nuclo, director of viticulture at King Estate Winery south of Eugene, Ore., told Wines & Vines last week. “It was a lot less stressful of a year, just due to soil moisture.” The tally of growing degree-days at locations around Oregon underscore the moist, cool conditions. The tally for 2016 through the end of August for McMinnville in the Willamette Valley stood at 2,059 versus 2,187 in 2015. A similar spread was logged in southern Oregon, where King Estate brought in its first fruit, with growing degree-days in Medford totalling 2,906 (98 less than last year). The most dramatic spread was seen in Milton-Freewater, Ore., with a difference of nearly 500 units. This town in the Walla Walla Valley AVA had 2,673 growing degree-days. Conditions in the region also have been favourable to growers north of the state line who have been steadily bringing in their fruit under cooler conditions in the past week. “We are about 100 tons in so far,” reported Marty Clubb, winemaker at L’Ecole No. 41 in Lowden, Wash., just east of Walla Walla. The cooler weather has been excellent for the grapes, because it’s allowed other components to come into balance with sugars. “Color, acid, pH and balance looks really good so far,” he said. “Berry size is larger than normal (due to a cooler than normal July), so cluster weights are up.” This translates into a prospect of greater yields, and what will likely be Washington’s largest harvest on record. To date, the largest harvest was in 2014, when 227,000 tons were picked; this year could easily exceed 235,000 tons. Clubb anticipates that there might even be fruit left to spare. It’s a similar scenario in British Columbia, where growers have sights set on a strong finish to 2016. While storms swept through many parts of the B.C. interior this summer, delivering precipitation and cooler weather across the region, the vineyards surrounding Black Hills Estate Winery south of Oliver seem poised to deliver an abundant harvest of top-quality fruit. Winemaker Graham Pierce of Black Hills Estate Winery in Oliver, B.C., received Semillon grapes last month, and he hopes to continue the harvest with Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc next week. Brix and acid levels in Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah are all coming into balance, and Pierce believes they’ll benefit from a warm, temperate period of hang time. It’s a shift from this spring, when hot weather kicked vines toward véraison a week earlier than 2015. “Everything got out of the gate really, really fast, so once you had that momentum going, things continued on,” he said. “We were like, ‘Holy smokes, this is going to be crazy.’” Cooler weather provided welcome relief, and with the turn of the seasons putting a cap on temperatures, the only thing standing in the way of a photo-finish is an early frost. “Our best-case scenario is high 20ºs C at this point,” he said. “But that’s where we really like to see the ripening, around 25º to 28º C,” (77º-83º F) he said. It’s “where you get a lot of that really good flavor development.”
 

Sangiovese (Nielluccio) Wine

A strong all-rounder, Sangiovese is Italy's most widely planted wine grape, and a cornerstone of the Italian national vineyard. It is as comfortable in humble IGT wines as it is in traditional DOCG greats like Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano.

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Glera (Prosecco) Wine

Glera is a long-standing synonym of northern Italy's Prosecco grape, and the name by which it is now officially known. This green-skinned variety has been grown for hundreds of years in the Veneto and Friuli regions, most famously to produce sparkling Prosecco wines.

The Prosecco-Glera name change happened in 2009, when Prosecco di Conegliano-Valdobbiadene was promoted to full DOCG status (the highest level of Italian wine quality). In light of this promotion, it was decided that the name Prosecco should be reserved exclusively for wines covered by Italy's official Prosecco appellation titles, and should not be used for the grape variety. The European Union ratified this, effectively making it illegal for wine producers anywhere outside northeastern Italy to label their wines as "Prosecco". There are striking similarities between this story and that of Tocai Friulano and Tokay Pinot Gris.

 Glera (Prosecco) Grapes

Glera (Prosecco) Grapes

To complicate Glera/Prosecco matters further, the Glera/Prosecco variety is in fact several varieties, rather than a single one. Although some authorities claim there are tens of sub-varieties and biotypes, in practice these are boiled down into three key forms: Prosecco Lungo, Prosecco Tondo and Prosecco Nostrano (replace "Prosecco" with "Glera" as appropriate). And just when you thought it couldn't get any more complex, in the Colli Euganei, the variety/varieties go by their local synonym Serprina.

The origins of these varieties are as unclear and controversial as their various names. The most obvious and easily believed story is that Prosecco originated in the town of Prosecco, located near Italian-Slovenian border.

Italian wine produced from Glera is almost always either frizzante (fizzy) or spumante (fully sparkling). A few still wines are also made from Glera, but on nowhere near the same scale as the sparkling wines that are so widely exported around the globe. The worldwide popularity of Prosecco has resulted in many imitations of the style – one of the key reasons that the Italian authorities sought international legal protection for the name "Prosecco" back in 2009.

Glera is a highly productive grape that ripens late in the season. It has high acidity and a fairly neutral palate, making it ideal for sparkling wine production. Glera’s aromatic profile is characterized by white peaches, with an occasional soapy note. The wine is light-bodied and low in alcohol (8.5% is the minimum permitted ABV for Prosecco wines), suggesting it as a refreshing summer beverage or as an aperitif.

Outside Italy, Glera is grown in Slovenia and Australia, in particular the King Valley.

Synonyms include: Serprina, Prosecco Bianco, Proseko Sciprina.

Food matches include:
Europe: Air-cured beef salad (insalata di bresaola); linguine with sage and butter; panettone
Asia: Yellow rice (nasi kuning); lychees in coconut milk
Americas: Waldorf salad; smoked salmon crostini
Australasia/Oceania: Lime sorbet
Africa/Middle East: Assorted stuffed and baked pastries (börek)

por wine house @ Bittersweet