daily wine picks

$15 to $30

Oct. 04, 1999: MOUNT VEEDER Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 1996 (91 points, $30)

Wonderful richness, depth and complexity, with layers of earthy currant, mushroom, cedar, clay, tar and leather. It's a big, chewy, rustic style that needs short-term cellaring. Best from 2001 through 2009. 10,000 cases made.

Sep. 25, 1999: MUMM CUVEE NAPA Brut Napa Valley Prestige NV (88 points, $15)

This California sparkling wine is quite a value at this price and score. It's bright and tangy, with a core of lemon and lime flavors that fan out on the palate to yield a toasty, fresh finish with hints of apple and pear. Drink now. 180,000 cases made.

Sep. 23, 1999: PAUL BLANCK Riesling Alsace Grand Cru Furstentum Vieilles Vignes 1996 (92 points, $30)

Ripe peach, honey and mineral notes are allied to a firm structure and rich texture, adding extra dimension to this amazing French white, yet it remains elegant and balanced. A very long, smoky finish is the capper. Best from 2000 through 2007.

Sep. 22, 1999: ESTANCIA Meritage Alexander Valley 1996 (90 points, $30)

This Bordeaux-style red delivers complex and focused plum, currant, spice, cinnamon and cedar flavors that flow to a gentle finish with soft, integrated tannins. An elegant and enticing California bottling. Drink now through 2004. A blend of Cabernet Sauv

Sep. 14, 1999: JEAN-MARC BROCARD Chablis Vaucoupin 1997 (93 points, $26)

While Burgundy's Cote d'Or whites are uneven in '97, Chablis has performed well. This one is thick, rich and ripe, with a lovely mouthfeel, nice honey, pear, wet earth and mineral flavors and a subtle, silky finish that is just ravishing. Amazing. Drink n

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