daily wine picks


More than $30

Jul. 29, 2003: CHÂTEAU MONTROSE St.-Estèphe 2000 (95 points, $87)

Incredible blackberry, licorice and vanilla character, with lovely and complex aromas. Full-bodied, with a solid core of fruit and a long finish. Goes on and on and on. Best since the amazing 1996 Montrose. Best after 2010. 15,000 cases made. Collectible —James Suckling

Jul. 24, 2003: CHÂTEAU MARGAUX Margaux 2000 (100 points, $423)

Muscular yet classy. Breathtaking aromas of black licorice, violets, berry and cherry, with light hints of spices and minerals; it's all there in the nose. Full-bodied, with an ultrafine tannin structure, and a finish that persists for minutes. This may t —James Suckling

Jul. 21, 2003: AU BON CLIMAT Chardonnay Santa Maria Valley XX Anniversary Passant des Nuits-Blanches au Bouge 2000 (92 points, $35)

Opens with floral and sandalwood aromatics, then shows off a beam of smoky lemon, citrus, spicy pear, pineapple and anise flavors, finishing in a long, rich, elegant aftertaste. Firm acidity should give this wine a wider drinking window. Drink now through —James Laube

Jul. 18, 2003: CHATEAU ST. JEAN Chardonnay Sonoma County Reserve 2000 (93 points, $45)

Creamy-textured, with complex fig, pear, apricot and smoky oak flavors that build to a nice crescendo, turning elegant and rich on the finish, with a long, integrated aftertaste. Drink now through 2007. 1,800 cases made. Highly Recommended. —James Laube

Jul. 16, 2003: KISTLER Chardonnay Carneros Hyde Vineyard 2000 (95 points, $60)

Here's a classic California Chardonnay from one of the region's acclaimed producers. Ultrarich, almost syrupy, with a gorgeous core of ripe, buttery pear, honey, pineapple and citrus flavors that are amazingly well-focused. Finishes with a tight beam of f —James Laube

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