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This nicely priced Rioja is plump and fruity, with ripe plum and blackberry flavors on a round, soft frame, finishing with vanilla and spicy accents. Not an ager, but seductive. Drink now through 2006. 50,000 cases made. Best Values.
For a complete —Thomas Matthews
Winemaker Aurelio Montes has this winery at the top of Chile's heap. This value wine is tough to beat, with its inviting nose of fresh, crushed berries and spice, and likewise flavors augmented by restrained vanilla and toast. Solid medium-bodied, fleshy —James Molesworth
From the southwest of France comes this dense yet supple wine, which offers dark plum, cassis and tobacco flavors, with leafy elements and hot stone notes. Powerfully tannic finish, with bittersweet chocolate nuances. Best from 2003 through 2006. 7,000 ca —Kim Marcus
Chile's Concha y Toro is really turning out solid stuff these days. This value-priced offering gives plenty of tasty dark berry, brier and vanilla flavors, with judicious toast on the juicy finish. Nicely done. Drink now through 2003. Best Values. —James Molesworth
Tuscany has enjoyed a string of fine vintages, including the ripe, jammy '00. This Chianti offers lots of blackberry and spices, with hints of earth. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a long, silky finish. A pretty wine. Drink now through 2006. 8,300 c —James Suckling
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