daily wine picks


More than $30

May. 30, 2002: JOSEPH PHELPS Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 1999 (92 points, $42)

The '99 Napa Cab from Phelps is a rich, deftly balanced style, loaded with complex earthy currant, black cherry, anise, coffee and mocha flavors that are sharply focused. Long and concentrated on the finish, with a leathery streak working its way in. Best —James Laube

May. 28, 2002: SOTER Pinot Noir Yamhill County Beacon Hill 1998 (91 points, $48)

Tony Soter, of California's Etude, has recently debuted his own Oregon project. This initial release shows enticing aromas and deep, complex flavors that hit a lot of different notes, ranging from plum to mushroom, truffle and exotic spices. Texture has a —Harvey Steiman

May. 27, 2002: DOMINIO DE EGUREN Toro Numanthia 1999 (93 points, $45)

Made in a voluptuous international style, this lush Spanish red teems with toasty, chocolate oak flavors, thickly overlaid on ripe plum and blackberry fruit. It's well-structured, with firm, ripe tannins and heady alcohol. Impressive. Best from 2003 throu —Thomas Matthews

May. 25, 2002: RUSTENBERG Peter Barlow Stellenbosch 1999 (92 points, $34)

This 100 percent Cabernet Sauvignon from South Africa demonstrates that this region has serious potential. It pulls no punches, with a great beam of dark blackberry and currant flavors up front, creamy toast in the middle, and a pure, sleek, polished fini —James Molesworth

May. 23, 2002: PLANETA Chardonnay Sicilia 2000 (94 points, $34)

From Sicily comes this full-throttle Chardonnay, with all the Burgundy treatment (read, juicy Meursault) you could hope for. Loads of apple, vanilla and pineapple character. Full-bodied, with loads of fruit and a long, butterscotch and ripe fruit aftertas —James Suckling

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