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daily wine picks

$15 to $30

Nov. 16, 2004: CHARLES JOGUET Chinon Clos du Chêne Vert 2002 (92 points, $29)

Dark, nearly brooding nose of black currant and tobacco, this is a dense wine packed with fruit, iron, smoke, game and plum sauce notes that expand through the finish. It's got plenty of grip and structure, but stays remarkably supple. Drink now through 2 —James Molesworth

Nov. 15, 2004: RAVENSWOOD Zinfandel Dry Creek Valley Teldeschi 2002 (88 points, $30)

Intense and concentrated, with a tight band of earth, anise, black berry and wild berry fruit that's well-focused, with firm tannins and excellent structure. Drink now through 2008. 2,672 cases made. —James Laube

Nov. 13, 2004: TURLEY Zinfandel California Old Vines 2002 (89 points, $25)

Ripe, intense and concentrated, with deftly balanced fruit and light cedary oak. The zesty cranberry and wild berry flavors are restrained and harmonious, giving you more flavor and depth than you might expect from a California appellation Zin. Drink now —James Laube

Nov. 12, 2004: THELEMA Chardonnay Stellenbosch 2003 (89 points, $25)

Nice pear, toast and matchstick notes here, with a lengthy finish. A bit tight now, with the matchstick note dominating, but give it time to open in the cellar. Best from 2005 through 2007. 4,500 cases made. From South Africa. —James Molesworth

Nov. 11, 2004: DOMINIO DEL PLATA Syrah-Bonarda Mendoza Crios de Susana Balbo 2003 (89 points, $15)

Lovely fruit here--plum and cassis--with sweet vanilla, violet and spice notes that add dimension. Round and creamy throughout, with a long, fruit-filled finish. Drink now through 2005. 4,500 cases made. From Argentina. —James Molesworth

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