daily wine picks


$15 to $30

Mar. 31, 2005: KAESLER Shiraz Barossa Valley Stonehorse 2003 (90 points, $26)

Polished on the outside, vibrant on the inside, with a whoosh of cherry, plum and licorice flavor that just won't quit as the finish persists impressively. Drink now through 2012. 3,000 cases made. —Harvey Steiman

Mar. 30, 2005: HILLSVIEW Shiraz Adelaide Blewitt Springs 2001 (90 points, $19)

Smooth, ripe and distinctive for its peppermint and fresh-turned earth character around a lovely core of blueberry, blackberry and bittersweet chocolate that lingers on the polished finish. Drink now through 2010. 1,500 cases made. —Harvey Steiman

Mar. 29, 2005: FARNESE Edizione Cinque Autoctoni 1999 (90 points, $20)

Inky in color, with a dense and rich blackberry, chocolate and ripe plum character. Full-bodied, with a jammy, lightly peppery aftertaste. Thick and velvety. Fruit-forward, Aussie style. Montepulciano, Primitivo, Sangiovese, Negroamaro and Malvasia Nera f —James Suckling

Mar. 28, 2005: GIRARD Chardonnay Russian River Valley 2003 (88 points, $20)

Well-balanced, with a mix of ripe apple, spice and hazelnut flavors, but also a touch of cedary oak that's not quite integrated into the wine. Still, it finishes with a complex and well-focused aftertaste. Drink now through 2008. 2,456 cases made. —James Laube

Mar. 26, 2005: CHÂTEAU GRAND CORBIN-DESPAGNE St.-Emilion 2002 (88 points, $15)

Good wine with plum, vanilla and milk chocolate flavors. Medium-bodied, with soft, silky tannins and a long finish. Delicious already. I like this as much as the 2000. Best from 2005 through 2010. 5,665 cases made. —James Suckling

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