daily wine picks

$15 to $30

Mar. 24, 2004: THOMAS-LABAILLE Sancerre Les Monts Damnés 2002 (92 points, $20)

A rapier, this racy Sancerre features citrus peel, peach, lemon pound cake, lime and mineral notes on a crunchy, vibrant texture. Tangy and precise on the finish, with a lovely lemon zest edge. Drink now through 2005. Smart Buys. From France. —James Molesworth

Mar. 23, 2004: MULDERBOSCH Chardonnay Stellenbosch 2002 (92 points, $24)

This chiseled, structured Chardonnay has lots of crunchy acidity supporting its ripe pear, fig, pineapple and papaya notes. Lots of citrus peel and floral hints here as well, with a long, stony finish. Drink now through 2006. 4,000 cases made. Smart Buys. —James Molesworth

Mar. 22, 2004: ROBERT EYMAEL (MÖNCHHOF) Riesling Spätlese Mosel-Saar-Ruwer Ürziger Würzgarten 2002 (92 points, $23)

A gorgeous spätlese, fresh, pure and dripping with pineapple, apricot and slate notes on an open-knit frame. Lovely harmony and length, with lingering fruit and mineral elements. Drink now through 2015. 600 cases imported. Smart Buys. —Bruce Sanderson

Mar. 17, 2004: MACROSTIE Chardonnay Carneros Reserve 2000 (93 points, $25)

Wonderful aromas of ripe fruit and fresh-cut flowers, exhibiting rich, creamy fig, apricot, pear and spicy hazelnut and light oak nuances. Tremendous aftertaste folds together loads of flavor enlivened by acidity. Drink now through 2007. 620 cases made. H —James Laube

Mar. 15, 2004: CLOS DES JACOBINS St.-Emilion 2001 (91 points, $25)

Lots of blackberry, tobacco, earth and spice in this young red. Full-bodied, with silky tannins and lovely balance on the finish. Rich and decadent. This is better than the 2000 and shows this estate is improving with every vintage; the new team at Clos d —James Suckling

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