daily wine picks

More than $30

Sep. 11, 2002: TENUTA DELL'ORNELLAIA Toscana Masseto 1999 (96 points, $300)

Just a hair off the quality of the '98, this Tuscan Merlot is superb nonetheless. Gorgeous black olive and ripe fruit aromas in this Merlot. Full-bodied, with big, rich and chewy tannins and a long, long, ripe fruit finish. Fantastic. Best after 2006. 2,8 —James Suckling

Sep. 07, 2002: OLIVIER LEFLAIVE FRÈRES Meursault Charmes 2000 (94 points, $57)

Despite a troubled red wine harvest in '00, the Burgundy region's whites have a lot to offer. The Meursault Charmes from Olivier Leflaive is a firm and tightly wound wine with lots of ripe fruit -- the combination makes you salivate, it's so seductive and —Per-Henrik Mansson

Sep. 05, 2002: BODEGAS Y VIÑEDOS Maurodos Toro Viña San Román 1999 (93 points, $34)

Toro, a small appellation west of Rueda, is drawing more and more interest. This beauty shows an impressive combination of power and balance. The fruit flavors are lively and crisp, with blackberry and currant notes, vivid enough to carry masses of toasty —Thomas Matthews

Aug. 28, 2002: BRYANT FAMILY Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 1999 (97 points, $150)

This wine has quickly established itself as one of the best in California, though limited production makes it nearly impossible to find. The '99 Bryant is a dark, saturated, mouthcoating wine that's fairly muscular, loaded with plush smoky currant, herb, —James Laube

Aug. 19, 2002: CHÂTEAU DE BEAUCASTEL Châteauneuf-du-Pape Hommage à Jacques Perrin Grande Cuvée 1999 (94 points, $245)

Though tough to find, this is one of the top Châteauneufs being made today. A remarkable effort in the '99 vintage. Beautiful. Inky-black and very intense, built in a modern style, like a top Bordeaux classified-growth, with plenty of freshly crushed ber —Per-Henrik Mansson

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