Monster Brunello. Very dark in color, with superripe aromas of black licorice, dried plum, mint and meat. Full-bodied, with masses of velvety tannins and a long, long finish. Best version of this Tuscan red since the legendary 1990 Montosoli. Give it time —James Suckling
Here—s an outstanding example of French Syrah. Amazingly velvety mouthfeel marks this balanced and beautiful '97 Rhône red. Smooth, rich, ripe yet fresh, it caresses the palate, delivering blackberry, wet earth and sweet tannins in a clean package. Ver —Kim Marcus
A fabulous northern Rhône. This serious Hermitage has its roots deep in hillside soil, with mineral, wet earth and grilled character. Intense and complex, showing a toasted, smoky essence and loads of blackberry flavors. Refined tannins turn firm and giv —Kim Marcus
From California—s perhaps top Chardonnay producer comes yet another great release. The '97 Durell is a seamless wine of classic proportions. Ripe, rich and polished, with tiers of pear, citrus, melon, hazelnut and fig culminating in a long, polished aft —James Laube
There's a lovely crystallike purity to this Loire white (made from late-harvested Chenin Blanc), with orange and cherry blossom weaving through citrus flavors and notes of almond and honey. It's high-toned but has plenty of intensity, with a core of ripe, —Kim Marcus
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