daily wine picks


$15 to $30

Sep. 29, 2005: RED NOTE Costières de Nîmes 2003 (88 points, $20)

Throwback style, with lots of grilled meat, herb, black cherry, tar and sanguine flavors. Racy and dark through the finish. Lots of character here. Syrah and Grenache. Drink now through 2006. 1,050 cases made. —James Molesworth

Sep. 28, 2005: MEERLUST Merlot Stellenbosch 2000 (88 points, $24)

Still has life (surprisingly) with ripe red currant and black cherry fruit supported by alluring cocoa and toast notes. Nice mineral and toast notes on the fleshy finish. Drink now. 7,000 cases made. —James Molesworth

Sep. 27, 2005: LOMAS DEL VALLE Malbec Mendoza Kaiken Ultra 2003 (88 points, $23)

Very good raspberry and blackberry fruit, but the toast is a bit heavy, turning to cinnamon and coffee in the end, leaving a slightly rigid feel. Plenty of fruit though; this should come around with brief cellaring. Drink now through 2007. 5,000 cases mad —James Molesworth

Sep. 26, 2005: FLORA SPRINGS Merlot Napa Valley 2003 (88 points, $25)

Scents of black cherry and blackberry, with a dash of cedar and anise. This shows a strong presence of rich, chewy tannins; a very complex, concentrated and well-structured Merlot. Decant. Best from 2006 through 2011. 7,400 cases made. —James Laube

Sep. 24, 2005: VIÑA ERRÁZURIZ Cabernet Sauvignon Aconcagua Valley Max Reserva 2003 (88 points, $19)

Juicy blackberry and briar flavors run through this medium-weight red, with dark cocoa and smoke notes framing the finish. Drink now through 2006. 2,500 cases imported. —James Molesworth

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