daily wine picks


More than $30

Oct. 23, 2003: DUVAL-LEROY Brut Blanc de Chardonnay Champagne 1996 (94 points, $38)

Totally seductive. This lush, opulent '96 has the texture of cashmere wrapped around vanilla bean, citrus, honey and coffee notes, with an aftertaste of grilled hazelnut. Elegant, medium-bodied and sophisticated, with a chameleon character and endless app —Bruce Sanderson

Oct. 21, 2003: CASANOVA DI NERI Toscana Pietradonice 2001 (96 points, $80)

Fantastic aromas of crushed blackberry, raspberry and cherry follow through to a full-bodied palate, with a solid core of tannins and a long, long finish. Dense yet refined, with excellent richness and structure. This is stunning and only the second year —James Suckling

Oct. 17, 2003: RUST EN VREDE Stellenbosch 2000 (92 points, $33)

From one of South Africa's top wineries comes this perennially outstanding blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz and Merlot. Terrific juice, pure and driven, with red and black currant, cassis, bittersweet chocolate, graphite and espresso flavors. Serious d —James Molesworth

Oct. 16, 2003: CHARLES HEIDSIECK Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne Blanc des Millénaires 1990 (97 points, $85)

Understated excellence. Very refined in texture. Complex, revealing honey, coffee, citrus confit and ginger notes enmeshed in the supple, fine-grained texture. Firm yet perfectly integrated. A beautiful, stately expression of Chardonnay from Champagne. Dr —Bruce Sanderson

Oct. 13, 2003: SETTE PONTI Toscana Oreno 2001 (95 points, $80)

This blend of Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot is one of the new hot wines of Tuscany. Dark, with fantastic aromas of currant, blackberry, spice and lightly toasted oak. Full-bodied, with very well-integrated tannins and a texture as fine as the —James Suckling

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