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daily wine picks

More than $30

Feb. 24, 2005: BENI DI BATASIOLO Barolo Vigneto Cerequio 2000 (91 points, $65)

Complex and subtle aromas of tea, spices and berries follow through to a full-bodied palate, with velvety tannins and a thick finish. This is dense and tight. Give it time. Best after 2007. 1,000 cases made. From Piedmont, Italy. —James Suckling

Feb. 23, 2005: PIERO BUSSO Barbaresco Gallina 2001 (91 points, $160/1.5L)

Aromas of cedar and tobacco with berries follow through to a medium-bodied palate, with fine tannins and a fresh finish. A beauty. This is supposed to be his top wine but I prefer the S. Stefanetto. Best after 2006. 150 cases made. From Piedmont, Italy. —James Suckling

Feb. 22, 2005: VERAISON Syrah Napa Valley Black Bart Stagecoach Vineyards 2002 (92 points, $48)

A tasty mix of firm, ripe, dense wild berry, blackberry, loganberry, with touches of pepper and spice, this immense wine is supported by chewy, gritty tannins as well, along with a touch of dark chocolate, making it a candidate at this point for short-ter —James Laube

Feb. 21, 2005: SIMI Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley Landslide 2001 (92 points, $33)

A delicious Cabernet at a terrific price. Smooth, rich and juicy, with tiers of lively black cherry, wild berry and blackberry fruit that are deeply concentrated with a supple, elegant mouthfeel. On the finish the tannins show some grip and a nice dusty, —James Laube

Feb. 19, 2005: SIDURI Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands Pisoni Vineyard 2003 (92 points, $52)

Dark, rich, intense and concentrated, with plush blueberry, wild berry and black cherry fruit that's well-focused, deep and persistent. Shows off plenty of rich tannic strength, but in the end it's the fruit that shines through. Drink now through 2008. 50 —James Laube

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