daily wine picks

Less than $15

Aug. 28, 1999: VINA SANTA CAROLINA Cabernet Sauvignon Colchagua Valley Dallas Conte (88 points, $10)

Here's a solid, value-oriented bottling from Chile. A voluptuous red, with ripe fruit and lavish oak. The rich flavors range from plum to prune, chocolate to coffee, backed by firm, ripe tannins and echoing on a long, minty finish. Drink now through 2003.

Aug. 27, 1999: BODEGAS ESMERALDA Malbec Mendoza Alamos Ridge 1997 (86 points, $10)

From Argentina comes another solid Malbec, a grape not usually seen on its own elsewhere. This is a full-bodied red, with a mix of cherry, plum, leather and cassis flavors. Notes of coffee, leather and spice add richness to the finish. Drink now. 11,570 c

Aug. 26, 1999: KWV Pinotage Western Cape 1998 (86 points, $9)

Pinotage, made from a cross of Pinot Noir and Cinsault, is South Africa's 'native' grape. This version, from one of the region's large cooperatives, offers excellent value. Generous fruit flavors and a rich texture make this easy to swallow. It has ripe c

Aug. 25, 1999: COVEY RUN Riesling Washington (85 points, $6)

Fruity and generous, juicy, with green apple, melon and mineral flavors that finish soft and gentle. Drink now. 21,000 cases made.

Aug. 24, 1999: VIU MANENT Cabernet Sauvignon Colchagua Valley Reserve 1997 (89 points, $12)

From Chile comes this intense, elegant red which shows an alluring combination of toasty oak and ripe fruit, with expressive and harmonious flavors of plums, licorice, chocolate and mint. It's firm, balanced and long. Drink now through 2005. 15,000 cases

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