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May 16th, 2012 WW Staff | Market Guide
 

Devour 2012: Beer, Wine & Spirits

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Top Picks:
  • Clear Creek Distillery
    to meet the master.
  • CorksCru
    to feel the chill in your bones
  • Hollywood Fred Meyer
    for volume.
  • Saraveza
    ’cause it’s so darn cute.
  • Stone Barn Brandyworks
    to see how the 40-proof sausage is made.

The Beermongers

1125 SE Division St., 234-6012, thebeermongers.com. 

[BEER] At Beermongers, man is not so far removed from his ancestors. Huddled in a dark cave, hairy men drink and grunt undisturbed by modern digitized entertainment or the fairer sex. Has some guy ever brought a date to Beermongers? It’s theoretically possible—there’s no formal “No Girlz Aloud” sign—yet implausible given the bottle shop’s brutish simplicity and paucity of décor. This is fine: We like beer, and the Mongers have much. Organizing brews by style is a great touch, and the guys who run the place can answer any question you can possibly dream up. If you’d prefer more of a scene, Apex is catty-corner. MC.

Shopping list: Hit the Oregon-only case to the right as you walk in.


Belmont Station & Biercafe

4500 SE Stark St., 232-8538, belmont-station.com.

[BEER] Once upon a time, Belmont Station was basically a glorified storage room for the legendary Horse Brass Pub. After an impressive expansion followed by a four-block move to Stark Street (remember: Belmont Station is not on Belmont Street), it’s now one of Portland’s largest beer shops. It also has a bar, which closes oddly early and doesn’t sell fish or chips, but is otherwise pretty pleasant. Shoppers can find all the American craft brews available in the state and a decent selection of European imports, but there’s also fierce competition for rare bottles, which disappear as soon as they hit shelves. The staff’s helpfulness varies, but you’ll definitely stumble onto something worth drinking. MC.

Shopping list: Hit the Belgian cooler by the door to the cafe, which has some gems.


Blackbird Wine Shop

4323 NE Fremont St., 282-1887, blackbirdwine.com. Closed Monday.

[WINE, CHEESE] Picnicking? You supply the baguettes and Blackbird Wine Shop will supply the rest. A look inside Blackbird’s “Atomic Cheese” case yields all sorts of temptations, including Portland Creamery artisan goat cheese. Another case holds pâtés, finocchiona salami (with fennel seeds) and other cured meats from Olympic Provisions. As for the wine, proprietor Andy Diaz is skillful at drawing out customers’ preferences and leading them to their heart’s desire. He is also the rare Portland wine dealer who genuinely likes rosé and carries more than a token selection. In his experience, the Beaumont neighborhood isn’t big on trophy wines, so he isn’t, either—what you’ll find here are high-quality wines from lesser-known producers at affordable, clearly marked prices. AJ.

Shopping list: A quarter-pound wedge of perfectly aged Stilton cheese and a 2009 Selbach-Oster Blauschiefer Riesling.


Bottles

5015 NE Fremont St., 287-7022, bottlesnw.com.

[BEER] Depending on what time you visit, Northeast Fremont Street’s Bottles is a relaxed beer shop that invites you to sit and slurp your purchases along with a bite of house barbecue, or, as the evening passes, a lively bar that invites you to leave with an extra bottle of whatever you’ve been drinking. Either way, it works. More than a dozen cases of beers (400 labels and counting) from the Northwest and beyond line the walls, from pretty pints of Elysian Avatar Jasmine IPA to sour Upright Brewing ales and random lambics and dunkels. A tip: the price tag on top of each bottle is actually in-house price; they knock one or two bucks off if you take your purchase home. The taps change nightly or, ahem, “sometimes hourly,” so you can always sip something new and good as you ponder what you want to buy this time. KC.

Shopping list: Anything from Heater Allen, a mixed sixer of IPAs (the “Mix Six” to-go deal lets you choose six different 12-ounce bottles for $10) and a game of Lord of the Rings pinball.


Bridgetown Beerhouse

915 N Shaver St., 477-8763. 

[BEER] This dimly lit North Mississippi ’hood beer shop’s business cards proudly read: “The second best beer shop in Portland.” Who wouldn’t want to buy Belgian and German suds, sixers of PBR and beloved micros from owner Mike Waite, with a sense of humor like that? Waite, who worked as a kitchen manager for McMenamins for years before opening Bridgetown on President Obama’s inauguration day, is pretty much at the shop 24/7, so take advantage of his gregarious nature and knowledgeable palate to figure out which of his 500 high- and low-brow beers is right for you. Don’t see what you want? He digs special orders. KC.

Shopping list: Elysian Brewing “Peste” Chocolate Chili Ale.


Clear Creek Distillery

2389 NW Wilson St., 248-9470, clearcreekdistillery.com. Closed Sunday.

[DISTILLERY] Steve McCarthy ranks among the top craft distillers in the country, laying the foundation for Oregon’s current micro-distillery explosion. The variety of spirits birthed from Clear Creek’s four copper-pot stills is mind-boggling: a half-dozen fruit brandies, just as many liqueurs, seven grappas and one amazing whiskey. The tasting room doesn’t offer any discounts—prices are set by the OLCC—but you can sample the full range of McCarthy’s genius. BW.

Shopping list: Barrel-aged eau de vie de pomme, cranberry liqueur.


Cork

2901 NE Alberta St., 281-2675, corkwineshop.com.

[WINE, CHOCOLATE, OIL, VINEGAR] My vote for Portland’s most exuberant wine shop, Cork adds value with an impressive assortment of fine chocolates, fancy salts, olive oils, and balsamic vinegar from Modena (which you can pour yourself into refillable containers—nice!). At the other end of this sunny space sits a clawfoot bathtub filled with Champagne and other bubbles. Proprietors Darryl and Sarah Joannides (of Sellwood’s late, lamented Assaggio Restaurant) and assistant Hilary Olson have written detailed wine descriptions to help you home in on a new favorite. If Cork were my neighborhood wine shop, I’d join its member program in a flash. Besides discounts on wine, the $100 annual fee gets you and a friend into a year’s worth of Cork’s $10-$15 Friday tastings for free. AJ.

Shopping list: The 2009 Oregon Pinot Noir “Alberta,” a barrel selection made for Cork by Grochau Cellars Or Vergano, a chinato from a small Italian artisan distiller.


CorksCru

339 NW Broadway, 226-9463, corkscru.biz. Closed Sunday-Monday.

[WINE] Just as he did at the former Square Deal Wines, manager Dan Beekley keeps CorksCru at a nippy 57 degrees Fahrenheit, the better to protect his choice, 290-bottle array of small-production wines from the West Coast and the Mediterranean regions. Most are in the $20 to $30 range. If you come in looking for what he calls a “big-boy Burgundy” or a Veuve Clicquot, he can put you onto a lesser-known wine that is likely to be equally delicious and a far better value. Between his regular Friday tastings (“five wines at 5 pm for $5”) and his wine-list consulting, Beekley stays busy; at present he’s reportedly selecting the wines for the Pearl’s soon-to-open Riffle NW seafood restaurant. AJ.

Shopping list: Estate-bottled Quinta de la Rosa Tawny Porto makes a good sipping companion during the long, cold wait for summer.


Division Wines

3564 SE Division St., 234-7281, divisionwines.com. Closed Monday.

[WINE] If you’ve been to Southpark, you’ve probably seen Will Prouty behind the bar. Prouty and his wife, Danyelle, started Division Wines last year—good timing, given the number of restaurants springing up all around them. (They’re next door to the soon-to-be-resurrected Roadrunner; Cibo, a Bastas spinoff, will be right across the street; Xico, a Mexican joint, will be down the block.) Will Prouty is all about introducing people to lesser-known, often self-distributing wineries. Years of restaurant work have honed his empathy for wine drinkers of all stripes. “People don’t want to be made to feel stupid,” says Prouty. “They want people to listen and not lecture them.” Like the customer who recently whispered to him, “Don’t tell my husband, but what I really like are those oaky California chardonnays.” AJ.

Shopping list: Biodynamic Côtes du Rhône from the old vines at a young estate called Domaine Rouge-Bleu, imported by Portland-based Estelle Imports.


E&R Wine Shop

6141 SW Macadam Ave., 246-6101. Closed Sunday-Monday.

[WINE] This might be the most meticulously organized wine shop in Portland. Its wall of Italian wines, for instance, is labeled according to Italy’s 20 wine regions, and any of E&R’s three partners will gladly help you sort the Barolos from the Barbarescos and the Tuscans from the Super Tuscans. Owners Ed Paladino, Richard Elden and Stephanie Sprinkle taste 80 to 90 wines a week, and only two or three make it into their inventory. On Saturdays they’re always pouring something interesting, like an unusually grippy rosé of cabernet franc from Bourgueil, France. AJ.

Shopping list: A hearty 2008 shiraz from the gnarly old vines at Southeastern Australia’s Wyndham Estate. It’s on E&R’s guaranteed “Critical List”—if you don’t like it, you can trade it in for something else.


Garrison’s Fine Wines

1401 SE Morrison St., 233-8060, garrisonsfinewines.com. Closed Sunday-Monday.

[WINE] Conveniently a few doors up from Nostrana, this small shop’s strongest asset may be its friendly proprietor, a former high-school principal named Travis (Garrison) Fantz. Like many a wine monger, he started out as a collector, and his chilled, darkened wine vault harbors some hallowed Oregon relics, including Amity’s 1976 Pinot Noir Nouveau and Adelsheim’s first vintage, 1978. He keeps a good assortment of chilled whites, rosés and sparkling wines on hand; Portuguese labels (his “value” wines); California and Washington Cabs; dessert wines; and more. His themed Friday events, such as a recent tasting of the hard-to-get Cayuse wines from Walla Walla, draw Portland’s wine-crawlers who make Garrison’s a part of their regular circuit. AJ.

Shopping list: A deeply discounted 2000 Vignalta Colli Euganei Cabernet blend from Veneto, Italy.


Great Wine Buys

1515 NE Broadway, 287-2897, greatwinebuys.com.

[WINE] There is just no substitute for tasting. On my last visit here, urban winemaker John Grochau was pouring, and while I admired his elegant 2008 Eola-Amity Hills Pinot Noir, what really won my heart was his Columbia Valley Merlot-Cabernet blend, certainly one of the best bargains in the store. By “Great Wine Buys” I suspect they mean “It’s great that we got these highly allocated wines, isn’t it?” All the Northwest icons are here, from Washington’s Woodward Canyon, Betz, and DeLille to Oregon’s Patricia Green and Beaux Frères. Top California vintners occupy a central display, surrounded by German rieslings, Italy’s killer “B’s” (Barolo, Barbaresco, Barbera), dessert wines and Champagne. Or you could take $105 of that and buy the shop’s very eclectic “case of the month”—now that’s an education. AJ.

Shopping list: Too impatient to age your own pinot? Great Wine Buys’ cellared selections are old and fine.


Hollywood Fred Meyer

3030 NE Weidler St., 280-1300.

[WINE] For dirt-cheap pricing and a wide, deep selection of labels from around the globe, it’s the wine department at the Hollywood outpost of local big-box Fred Meyer that gets high marks from oenophiles. “We’re the largest wine department in Oregon or Washington. We have more than 3,000 different bottles,” explains assistant wine steward Jody Ruff-Harcourt. “And [the neighborhood] has a savvy clientele.” Each Fred Meyer is in charge of its own wine program (the Hawthorne store’s is also pretty great), and at Hollywood, head steward Leslie Boom and her crew are friendly, crazy-knowledgeable and willing to pretty much special-order cases of anything a customer desires—at 10 percent over wholesale cost. Really like a wine at a restaurant? Snap a camera-phone photo of the bottle and they’ll track it down for you. For everyday shoppers, a six-pack of mixed bottles will nab you 10 percent off at the register. KC.

Shopping list: Nice-priced Northwest, Greek, Portuguese, Italian, French and Spanish wines.


The Hop & Vine Bottle Shop

1914 N Killingsworth St., 954-3322, thehopandvine.com.

[WINE, BEER] In February, Overlook pub the Hop & Vine opened a bottle shop in the space adjacent to its North Killingsworth Street digs. Offering more hop than vine, the shop stocks a plethora of international and domestic microbrews, as well as some lesser-known gems, including bottles from Southern Oregon Brewing Company and Corvallis’ Block 15, and at least three brands of gluten-free, sorghum-based beer. (And just to prove it’s not too cool, the shop also carries six-packs of Coors Light and O’Doul’s.) The wine selection is a bit slimmer, but the Northwest is well-represented, of course, and a rack in the back adds vermouth, sake, cider and mead to the mix. One cooler by the counter holds a small selection of individual drinks, but if you want your wine or beer chilled, you’re better off heading to the bar next door. Check out the calendar on the website for frequent wine tastings and “meet the brewer” events. MHW.

Shopping list: Redstone Meadery’s honey wine with juniper berries, yerba mate IPA from MateVeza, Grochau Cellars Pinot Noir.


The Hop Haven Beer Bar and Bottle Shop

2130 NE Broadway, 287-0244. 

[BEER] The best part about the Hop Haven is its one-price-fits-all deal. Mix and match any six-pack of 12-ounce bottles for $8.70 or any 22-ounce bottle for $3.95-$4.95 to go. The 100-plus beers in the coolers are mostly domestic, with a lot of West Coast pales and IPAs. If you want to drink in-house, grab a bottle from the cooler and hand it to the bartender—he pops it, you drink it. Easy enough. If you’re sticking around, there are also four rotating taps, booze and pretty good hand pies, pizzas and sandwiches. There’s even a Ms. Pac-Man hungry for sad quarters. LC.

Shopping list: Elysian Immortal IPA in a six-pack.


House Spirits

2025 SE 7th Ave., 235-3174, housespirits.com. Closed Monday.

[DISTILLERY] The most renowned of Portland’s new generation of craft distilleries also has the best tasting room, a fragrant beige-hued bar decorated with barrels and racks of House’s signature labels—Aviation Gin, Krogstad Aquavit—and limited releases of rum, ouzo, coffee liqueur and whiskey in medicinal-looking bottles. One wall is devoted to the art of the cocktail, stocked with fine mixers (Fever-Tree tonic, Sanbitter soda), a dozen varieties of bitters, several cocktail manuals, and tools (shakers, bar spoons, mixing glasses) of the finest quality. BW.

Shopping list: House Spirits White Dog whiskey, a Boston strainer, all the Aviation you can drink.


John’s Marketplace

3535 SW Multnomah Blvd., 244-2617, johnsmarketplace.com.

[BEER, WINE] Ah, nothing like a Saturday morning listening to Aerosmith’s “Rag Doll” while perusing John’s huge global inventory of bottled beers. If you’re hankering to try a Czech Rebel, Estonian Saku Tume or Indian Maharaja beer, this is the place. Westsiders buy their kegs here, too, and the wine selection is nearly as diverse. Sometimes the employees make themselves scarce but it almost doesn’t matter because there are so many of “Mr. Mike” Bascom’s shelf-talkers (intermingled with New Yorker cartoons) to walk you through the wines and their flavor profiles. A sign on a cooler assures you that “Yes, you can drink rosé and still be a badass.” AJ.

Shopping list: “Orange” wines from Manfredi and Francesco Guccione of Northwest Sicily (these are “natural” whites that get their color from extra grape-skin contact). Or choose one of a dozen solid Oregon pinots priced under $20.


Liner & Elsen Wine Merchants

2222 NW Quimby St., 241-9463, linerandelsen.com. Closed Sunday.

[WINE] Close to our hearts, and not just because it’s downstairs from our office, 20-year-old Liner & Elsen has a remarkable selection of old and rare vintages (1991 Cayrou, anyone?), but the enormous, wide-ranging stock includes just as many amazing deals as it does luxury bottles. Check the monthly specials at the front of the store, where you’ll find a dozen cases priced at under $15 per bottle. The store stocks plenty of small Oregon winemakers (Ken Wright Cellars, Teutonic Wine Company) and esoteric imports (Greece, Georgia). For a special occasion, you can’t go wrong with Liner & Elsen’s stock of rare and single-grower Champagnes. BW.

Shopping list: 2008 L’Ecole No. 41 Estate Merlot ($30.99).


Oregon Wines on Broadway

515 SW Broadway, 228-4655, oregonwinesonbroadway.com. Closed Sunday.

[WINE, BEER] This downtown tasting room/wine shop hybrid is serious but not solemn about wine—not with that disco ball over the bar and Joan Jett on the PA. Behind the long bar is an argon-gas rig for dispensing fresh pours of at least 36 red wines—30 of them Oregon pinot noir. For $10 you can have three 1.5-ounce tastes (recently it was 2009 pinots from Westrey, Soter and J. Christopher), or you can bump up to the $16 premium pour. This place wouldn’t be my first choice for obtaining helpful advice on buying a bottle or case, at least not before 4 pm, when the bar heats up. A fair number of tourists stop in, but inside connections give the place a certain luster—several Oregon wineries do bottlings exclusively for proprietor Kate Bolling. AJ.

Shopping list: 2009 Cristom Mt. Jefferson Couvee Pinot Noir ($31.50).


Pearl Specialty Market and Spirits

900 NW Lovejoy St., 477-8604, pearlspecialty.com

[BEER, WINE, LIQUOR] One of the few liquor stores in Portland that doesn’t make you feel like a degenerate, Pearl Specialty is about as swish as spirit shops are allowed to get in our Soviet-style control state: You can actually touch the bottles, and many of the bottles you can touch are very good. There’s plenty of special-order spirits and top-shelf tipples in stock, but what really sets this store apart is that it’s the only place in Oregon you can buy liquor, wine and beer in the one spot. The store about doubled in size two years ago, vastly expanding its beer department to be one of the—if not the—best on the west side of the river. The wine selection skews more to the cheap and quaffable, though there’s a 2005 La Tâche for $5,000. You can’t touch that one, though, you grubby degenerate. RB.

Shopping list: Vodka, tequila, beer.


The Portland Bottle Shop

7960 SE 13th Ave., 232-5202, pdxbottleshop.com. Closed Mondays.

[BEER AND WINE SHOP] Precious few bottle shops give beer and wine equal attention. More often, one child is favored, the other languishing on a rickety shelf back by the storage room. Sellwood’s Portland Bottle Shop is run by a wine guy—owner Travis Motter is the sommelier who developed Laurelhurst Market’s wine program—but he’s thrown himself into suds, touring breweries, lining up special kegs and curating an excellent selection of brews. Housed in a warm nook of Sellwood’s strip of antique shops, this boutique feels a lot like a small-town specialty shop. The chatty service and dainty snacks further that impression. When it comes to special beer releases, the trek through the cold, dark woods separating the isolated outpost of Sellwood from the rest of town means this shop will have something long after other shops’ shelves have been picked clean. MC.

Shopping list: Bottles of beer, bottles of wine and maybe a cheese plate.


Portland U-Brew and Pub

6237 SE Milwaukie Ave., 943-2727, portlandubrewandpub.com.

[BREWING SUPPLIES] If you want to make your own beer, you want to start here. Greenhorns can have staff hold their hands through the brewing process, providing an extra set of eyeballs as they measure out ingredients and turn their mash into booze using the shop’s cute little copper kettles. More advanced or adventurous would-be brewers will find the scalable supplies they need to do it at home—from glass carboys to Cornelius kegs—and an impressive selection of raw ingredients. The laziest among us can retire to the tasting room where the brewery pours its own brews (try the porter) and provides checkerboards and grilled cheese sandwiches. MC.

Shopping list: Whatever you’re brewing, go with Wyeast Laboratories yeast, a world leader based in Hood River.


Portland Wine Merchants

1430 SE 35th Ave, 234-4399, portlandwinemerchants.com. Closed Monday.

[WINE] You may need a headlamp to explore this cave of a shop off Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard. The dim light and dusty atmosphere are perfectly suitable for storing wine, less so for reading the densely printed (and sometimes hyperbolic) shelf talkers. A clerk might help you find things, but only if you ask, so let me orient you. The south wall is France. The east wall is Oregon and California. The north wall is Italy—except toward the eastern end, where you get more California, along with Uruguay, Lebanon, Georgia (as in the former Soviet state), South Africa, Idaho and Australia. Oh, and also Portugal and Spain. The screaming bargains are the best lit, as they are right by the street door. Saturday and Sunday tastings are free from noon to 5 pm. AJ.

Shopping list: 2010 Raphael Verdicchio, a great dry white for a summer evening.


Saraveza 

1004 N Killingsworth St., 206-4252, saraveza.com.

[BEER] What could be more Portland than a cozy neighborhood pub serving locally sourced eats, decorated with old-school Pabst signs and offering more than 250 microbrews stored in vintage coolers? How about that same pub hosting a monthly “Free Bacon Night”? At Saraveza, that’s the second Monday of the month from 6 to 10 pm, when every pint sold comes with free smoked bacon. Saraveza does double duty as a bar and bottle shop: Walk in and put together a six-pack to go, or, more likely, sit down and have a pint to help you decide. The only good reason to take your beer home first is the “to go” prices, which claim to be practically as good as those at the supermarket. But how many supermarkets offer cans of Fort George Vortex IPA? MHW.

Shopping list: To-go 32-ounce jars filled from the tap ($1 more than the pint price), take-and-bake pasties, cans by Caldera Brewing and Anderson Valley.


Stone Barn Brandyworks

3315 SE 19th Ave., 775-6747, www.stonebarnbrandyworks.com.

[DISTILLERY] Sebastian and Erika Degens began distilling commercially less than a year ago, but their one-room warehouse, hidden away in a maze of streets by the railroad tracks south of Southeast Powell Boulevard, is already an essential stop for visitors to Portland’s distillery row. The Degans have skipped the usual vodka-to-gin-to-whiskey business model of most of our small distilleries and jumped straight into the fun stuff: quince liqueur, rye whiskey (made from Bob’s Red Mill rye flour), several varieties of pear liqueur and brandy, and a truly amazing strawberry liqueur. They distill in tiny batches and sell almost exclusively from the distillery, so watch the website for new releases. BW.

Shopping list: Quince liqueur, unoaked rye whiskey, apple brandy.


Storyteller Wine Company

5511 SW Hood Ave., 206-7029, storytellerwine.com. Open Friday and Saturday.

[WINE] Open just two days a week, this nondescript suite adjacent to Johns Landing offers a modest, eclectic array of wines, all from the Northern Hemisphere. You truly get the sense that proprietor Michael Alberty, the shop’s “head storyteller,” has handpicked each wine, and that each one has a story he can’t wait to share. In fact, any winery seeking to stand out in a crowded marketplace would do well to get Alberty on its side, because he is a born buzz generator. JB.

Shopping list: 2011 Cameron Winery Giovanni.


Uptown Liquor

1 NW 23rd Place, 227-0338. Closed Sunday.

[LIQUOR] Dedicated cocktailians know this unassuming shop in a mini-mall just up the hill from the Northwest 23rd Avenue Gap store carries the broadest range of unusual spirits in town. Here you’re guaranteed to find bottles from all the local distillers, plus mysteriously named liquors like Farigoule (made from thyme), Zirbenz (pine) and Aperol (bitter orange, gentian, rhubarb and cinchona). The bourbon selection is good, too; check out the Vintage Collection from Kentucky Bourbon Distillers. BW.

Shopping list: Owner Russ Kelley recommends Russell’s Reserve Rye.


Vino

137 SE 28th Ave., 235-8545, vinobuys.com. Closed Monday.

[WINE] Vino proprietor Bruce Bauer recently relocated his shop from a sleepy Sellwood side street to Portland’s eastside restaurant row. Another smart move: adding Sarah Egeland, a biodynamic wine enthusiast formerly of Cork, who hopes to teach wine-appreciation classes at Vino this summer. A recent Saturday pouring session felt like a foodie reunion, especially when chef’s chef Robert Reynolds (whose own kitchen is nearby) strolled in with his poodle. Bauer brings a wicked wit to his quest for the best. As big a fan as he is of venerable Mediterranean wines, if he likes something, he will cast aside all snobbery. Hence the Avalon Cabernet Sauvignon for $9.95: “Once again the negociants at Avalon don’t disappoint. These guys buy up excess cab juice from various locations around California, blend them, bottle ’em up, and ship them out to be poured into our grateful wine glasses. This drinks, again as always, as well as a lot of cabs costing $5 to $10 more a bottle.” AJ.

Shopping list: 2008 Terra Andina Carmenere Reserve “Valle de Rapel”.


Vinopolis

1025 SW Washington St., 223-6002, vinopoliswineshop.com. 

[WINE] This West End wine store easily has the largest range of vino in town. The warehouselike space is a maze of boxes and crates filled with bottles from all over the world (albeit with a heavy bent toward France), as well as a decent range of local labels. Don’t be fooled by the unpretentious surrounds. There’s some seriously spendy juice here—you can lay down $1,650 for futures of an ’09 Lafite Rothschild. But although Vinopolis isn’t the place to go for Two-Buck Chuck, there are also plenty of good buys around the $20 to $40 mark. Service is very hands-off (some find it cold, others refreshingly unobtrusive), but the staff knows its pinot from its primitivo, and will happily guide you through the liquid labyrinth to something matching your tastes and budget if prompted. RB.

Shopping list: Old World wines, good deals on wine by the case.


Woodstock Wine and Deli

4030 SE Woodstock Ave., 777-2208. Closed Sunday.

[WINE, BEER, CHEESE] Glen Fujino’s spacious shop has kept Woodstock residents in wine, beer and cheese for 25 years. There are shops in town with wider and deeper selections, but few feel so neighborly. The Friday-night wine tastings have a devoted following, summer barbecue competitions fill the parking lot with hungry locals, and the annual anniversary party is the best bash in town. Fujino stocks a good variety of affordable wines from small Oregon producers, along with some very good Australian bottles and a few big-ticket Europeans. He can also procure a salmanazar of Perrier-Jouët Champagne, should you want to get an entire wedding soused. The beer case has plenty of fine local brews, and the deli carries a few good cheeses at good prices, plus caviar. BW.

Shopping list: Hair of the Dog Doggie Claws, Harris Bridge fruit wines, caviar.

 
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