daily wine picks

$15 to $30

Dec. 30, 2003: RICHARD BOURGEOIS Sancerre 2002 (89 points, $18)

The Loire enjoyed a solid harvest in 2002. This Sauvignon Blanc bottling is rich and spicy for Sancerre, with lemon floral, straw and grapefruit notes as well. Nice juicy, lingering finish. Drink now through 2004. 10,000 cases made. Smart Buys. —James Molesworth

Dec. 20, 2003: FRANÇOIS PELISSIÉ Cahors Croix du Mayne 2001 (92 points, $15)

This Cahors is a nicely crafted, full-bodied red. Ripe and rich, filled with delicious dark cherry, blackberry and dark plum flavors. Seductive spice and dark chocolate notes intensify on the broad finish. Tempting now. Best from 2004 through 2007. 8,300 —Kim Marcus

Dec. 18, 2003: DOMAINE LAPORTE Sancerre Domaine du Rochoy 2001 (89 points, $19)

From the Loire comes this mature but still lively white, with lemon curd, white peach, herb and straw flavors that pick up a hint of almond on the lush finish. Nicely done. Drink now. 6,075 cases made. Smart Buys. —James Molesworth

Dec. 17, 2003: CHÂTEAU DU CÈDRE Cahors Le Prestige 2000 (90 points, $20)

From the southwest of France comes this polished and pure tasting red, with delicious red plum, iron and cassis flavors. Spicy, juicy finish feathered with smoke and meat elements. Drink now through 2005. 5,000 cases made. Smart Buys. —Kim Marcus

Dec. 16, 2003: DOMINIO DEL PLATA Cabernet Sauvignon Mendoza Crios de Susana Balbo 2002 (88 points, $15)

From Argentina comes this concentrated and ripe red, with brawny blackberry and currant fruit and plenty of toast. Has a beefy, gamy edge that recedes with air, revealing more fruit on the muscular finish. Drink now through 2005. 7,000 cases made. Smart —James Molesworth

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