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More than $30

May. 09, 2001: FRANCISCAN OAKVILLE ESTATE Magnificat Napa Valley (91 points, $35)

Here's another outstanding late-release '97 California Cabernet blend that is well-priced for the value, and made in ample quantity. Very appealing from start to finish. It's smooth and seductive, with pretty toasty oak, spice, currant and black cherry fl —James Laube

May. 08, 2001: CAKEBREAD Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Vine Hill Ranch (94 points, $70)

This late-release '97 Cabernet scores outstanding on our 100-point scale and is worth trying to hunt down. Bold, rich, deeply flavored and deeply concentrated Cab that has layers of currant, coffee, chocolate, hazelnut and cherry. The finish delivers a fl —James Laube

May. 07, 2001: BOUCHARD PÈRE & FILS Corton-Charlemagne 1999 (93 points, $123)

We?ve gotten our first look at the '99 whites from Burgundy, and the results are mixed. Nonetheless, here?s an outstanding one, from a venerable house that has made quite a turnaround in recent years. Clean, subtle and rich, this full-bodied white Burgund —Per-Henrik Mansson

May. 04, 2001: VINE CLIFF Merlot Napa Valley 1998 (89 points, $35)

This California Merlot is in a rich, dark, chocolaty style, tightly wound, with solid, well-integrated tannins and layers of plum, mineral, anise, currant and cedary-herbal flavors. Drink now through 2007. Tasted twice, with consistent notes. 2,900 cases —James Laube

May. 02, 2001: CHEHALEM Pinot Noir Willamette Valley Ridgecrest Vineyards (92 points, $39)

Round, firm, and packed with beautiful plum, berry and spice flavors; built to keep the tannins from overpowering the wine. The flavors just last and last, getting prettier by the sip. Best after 2003. 996 cases made. —Harvey Steiman

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