daily wine picks

Less than $15

Feb. 18, 2004: BODEGAS Y VIÑEDOS TAPIZ Malbec Mendoza 2002 (86 points, $8)

Good solid Malbec here, with juicy plum and brier flavors, and a plush, smoky finish. Drink now. 11,400 cases made. Best Values. From Argentina. —James Molesworth

Feb. 16, 2004: KWV Steen Western Cape 2003 (85 points, $8)

This South African Chenin Blanc (Steen is a synonym for the grape) offers nice, refreshing peach, tangerine and floral flavors, with a clean, crisp finish. Drink now. 20,000 cases made. Best Values. —James Molesworth

Feb. 12, 2004: DR. KONSTANTIN FRANK Riesling Finger Lakes Dry 2002 (90 points, $14)

Really fine fruit here. This drinks like a Mosel Riesling, with fig and lime flavors that ripple along crunchy acidity, supported by a distinct slate note. Admirable concentration, with fine cut on the finish. Should age nicely. Drink now through 2006. 2, —James Molesworth

Feb. 10, 2004: VIÑA MONTES Sauvignon Blanc Curicó Valley Fumé Blanc Reserve 2003 (88 points, $10)

This Chilean Sauvignon is quite refined, as the sweet pea, chive, lime, mineral and floral notes run along a creamy, yet lively palate. Very pretty finish. Drink now. 17,000 cases made. Best Values. —James Molesworth

Feb. 09, 2004: BODEGA CATENA ZAPATA Malbec Mendoza Alamos 2002 (89 points, $11)

Ripe, lip-smacking acidity helps keep the plum, blackberry and boysenberry fruit bouncing along here, with tasty mocha and spice notes as well. Subtle toast, so the fruit really shines. A delicious, forward style with textbook flavors. Drink now through 2 —James Molesworth

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