From Napa's reputable Rutherford appellation comes this ripe and elegant Cabernet, displaying spicy black cherry, currant, plum, anise and tar character, turning supple and polished. Drink now through 2008. 15,000 cases made. —James Laube
Otherworldly. It's hard to believe these aromas and flavors of licorice, tobacco and Indian spices come from Riesling, yet it's exotic, concentrated, dense and built like a skyscraper. Seemingly impenetrable today, wait until it all comes together; best f —Bruce Sanderson
This California Cabernet delivers plummy, smoky fruit flavors that are ripe and lush. It reveals complex anise, sage, mineral and leather notes before finishing in a long, rich aftertaste. A very good wine from an appellation that's making strides. Best f —James Laube
Though it has no relation to the similar-sounding Syrah grape, Petite Sirah does offer a similar-spice and black, fruit flavor profile. This release from Foppiano is a ripe and intense red from this underappreciated varietal, offering rich plum, pepper, w —James Laube
From Tuscany—s neighboring region of Umbria comes this Chardonnay and Grechetto blend. Big and ripe, with mango, pineapple and toasted oak galore. Full-bodied, with lots of fruit character and a long tropical fruit aftertaste. Very creamy in texture. Ex —James Suckling
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