daily wine picks

Less than $15

May. 07, 2003: ST. FRANCIS Chardonnay Sonoma County California Selection 2001 (88 points, $12)

Should be easy to find some of this rich and flavorful Chardonnay. It has a pretty range of ripe pear, honey, fig and apricot, with a pretty touch of vanilla and butterscotch. Drink now through 2006. 60,000 cases made. Best Values. —James Laube

May. 05, 2003: CASA GIRELLI Pinot Grigio Delle Venezie Canaletto Winemaker's Collection 2001 (85 points, $10)

Pinot Grigio lovers can stock up on this value from northeastern Italy. Ripe aromas of peaches and lemons. Medium-bodied, with lots of flavors and a grapefruit aftertaste. A bit simple, but delicious. Drink now. 100,000 cases made. Best Values. —James Suckling

Apr. 30, 2003: DEAKIN Merlot Victoria 2001 (85 points, $9)

Merlot lovers should grab some of this Aussie red. It's ripe and open, with pleasant cherry and raspberry flavors that last on the round finish. Drink now. 4,200 cases imported. Best Values. —Harvey Steiman

Apr. 29, 2003: COOPERS CREEK Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2002 (85 points, $10)

Here's a hard-to-beat value in New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. Bright and tart, a zinger of a wine with more citrus character than other fruit intensity. Drink now. 20,000 cases made. Best Values. —Harvey Steiman

Apr. 26, 2003: HIJOS DE ANTONIO BARCELO Ribera del Duero Viña Mayor Crianza 1999 (87 points, $12)

From one of Spain's more famous appellations comes this well-priced bottling. This generous red offers ripe plum, cola and chocolate flavors over firm tannins, with a fresh, minerally finish. It's clean and balanced. Drink now through 2007. 45,000 cases m —Thomas Matthews

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