daily wine picks


$15 to $30

May. 27, 2005: HERDADE DO ESPORÃO Aragonês Alentejo 2002 (89 points, $18)

Smoky, decadent aroma, with dark plum and dark cherry flavors. Medium- to full-bodied, with loads of bitter chocolate notes on the finish. A bit rough, but has intensity and structure, with plenty of chocolate, mocha and licorice. Needs time to settle dow —Kim Marcus

May. 26, 2005: DOMAINE ST.-MARTIN Marsannay Les Échézeaux 2002 (89 points, $22)

Shows great purity to the black cherry and blackberry aromas and flavors. Rich and round, with a solid structure for support. Drink now through 2009. 100 cases imported. —Bruce Sanderson

May. 25, 2005: PAGO DE VALLEGARCÍA Viognier Viño de Montes de Toledo 2001 (89 points, $30)

This full-blown white is rich with ripe fruit, smoky oak and alcohol. It has varietal character in its dried apricot, rosewater and spice flavors, with a core of acidity that keeps it firm. Drink now. 75 cases imported. —Thomas Matthews

May. 24, 2005: CAVE DES PRODUCTEURS LA VALLÉE COQUETTE Vouvray Réserve des Producteurs 2002 (89 points, $30)

Juicy, ripe quince, fig and pear flavors are supported by fresh, mouthwatering acidity. Off-dry in feel, with nice length. The fruit has an encore on the finish. Delicious. Drink now through 2006. 500 cases made. —James Molesworth

May. 23, 2005: VIÑEDOS DE ITHACA Priorat White Odysseus GB 2003 (90 points, $25)

Big, bold and rich, with pear, melon and honeysuckle flavors. Notes of orange and honey give it a hint of sweetness, yet there's firm acidity--even tannin--to keep it structured and balanced. Garnacha Blanca. Drink now. 2,500 cases made. —Thomas Matthews

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