Jasper Sisco Wines 2015 Clara Estelle Riesling

A 21st century bootstrap story.

There's an old joke: "Want to make a million bucks in the wine industry? Start with two million bucks." Har-de-har-har. Back when, you had to buy the land, grow the grapes, and build a winery -- all before you crushed a single grape. A rich man's game.

But now, with a little gumption and a four-figure chunk of change, you can buy a ton of grapes, rent time in a collective winemaking facility, and produce your own wine.

It's a 21st century bootstraps story: Justin Paul Russell was working as a wine buyer at a Whole Foods in Alabama. After a visit to Oregon, he stayed. Working three jobs (and one round of lndieGogo funding), he scraped together that chunk of change he needed.

I first met Justin at the Southeast Wine Collective in Portland. I was early. Justin was standing behind a barrel. "You want to try some wine?" Of course. He was nervous, almost panicky. "What do you think? Do you like it?"

It was extraordinary. Unbelievably good.

Fast forward. Today, Jasper Sisco has its own winery facility and Justin is making wine full time. Winemaker achievement: unlocked!

Cellar 503 Tasting Notes

Jasper Sisco Wines, Portland, Oregon
2015 Clara Estelle Riesling

I love Riesling for Thanksgiving. To me, this high-acid, fruit-forward wine is the perfect accompaniment to the heavy, rich foods of the holiday. And this Riesling from Jasper Sisco is especially suited to this meal.

The 2015 Clara Estelle Riesling is one of those wines that will make everyone at your table happy - whether it's the experienced wine drinker who will love the balance of acid and sugar and complex flavors or the novice who just likes to drink white wine.

The grapes used to make this wine come from the 22-year old Riesling vines growing in the Cherry Grove Vineyard near Gaston, Oregon. The Clara Estelle is a study in perfect balance. Winemaker Justin Paul Russell isn't afraid of residual sugar in his wines but he makes sure to pair it with bracing acidity. This wine smells like melon and pear and tastes like tart citrus with a bit of Golden Delicious apple in the mix.

A Cellar 503 selection in November 2016, A Friendsgiving Thanksgiving Willamette Valley | Riesling

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