daily wine picks


$15 to $30

Jul. 30, 2005: STEELE Chardonnay Carneros Sangiacomo Vineyard 2001 (92 points, $26)

Rich and full-bodied, with ripe, fleshy pear, guava, mango and hints of tropical fruit. Holds a rich, fruity profile and the flavors glide along, ending with a dash of citrus. Drink now. 500 cases made. —James Laube

Jul. 29, 2005: CAVEN Valtellina Superiore Inferno Al Carmine 2001 (91 points, $28)

Bright cherry, floral and berry character with hints strawberries. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a lively finish. A pretty wine. Best after 2006. 1,000 cases made. —James Suckling

Jul. 28, 2005: PIERRE SOULEZ Savennières Château de Chamboureau Cuvée d'Avant 2001 (91 points, $21)

Shows lanolin, honey and butter notes of maturity on the nose and upfront, before firm, bracing acidity brings in a second act of mineral, citrus peel and chamomile for the finish. Lush and taut at the same time. Drink now through 2010. 1,200 cases made. —James Molesworth

Jul. 27, 2005: ROCKBURN Pinot Noir Central Otago 2003 (90 points, $30)

Tangy and rich, with lovely, ripe strawberry and blackberry flavors supported by zingy acidity, all of it lasting nicely on the generous finish. Drink now through 2009. 6,000 cases made. —Harvey Steiman

Jul. 26, 2005: TALLEY Chardonnay Arroyo Grande Valley 2002 (89 points, $25)

A bold, rich, mouthcoating style, with ripe pear, apricot, spice, fresh earth and citrus flavors that pick up a nice touch of smoky-toasty oak on the finish. Drink now through 2006. Tasted twice, with consistent notes. 5,014 cases made. —James Laube

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