Daniel Kramer

It's Shepard Ross's Turn to Blow Your Mind

Shepard Ross, general manager and wine guru at Glass Wall, offers up some of his teeth-staining favorites:

$15 or less White 2005 Lo Brujo, Macabeo Calatayud, Spain

"Fun, easy to drink, crisp, with hints of citrus and banana. Soft, round mouth feel, but still has some nice acidity."

$30 or less Red 2003 Russian Hill Estate Pinot Noir Russian River Valley

"Punches your nose with boysenberries, a bit of earth and a bright-red raspberry note, finishing with some plum. Nice layers and complexity for the money."

$60 or lessRed 2002 Robert Young Scion Alexander Valley

"Perfectly blended Cabernet, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot -- a beautifully complex wine. Mocha, cherries and a touch of coconut (yes, coconut) on the nose. Chocolate, dark cherry, and some tobacco on the palate. Broad tannins coat your mouth without being overly dry. Even better than the '01."

$120 or less Red 2004 L'Aventure Estate Cuvee Paso Robles

"Incredible blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Petit Verdot. Plums and blackberry on the nose, followed by deep, dark, luscious fruit on your palate. Some tobacco as well. Intense, inky, eggplant color in the glass. Guaranteed teeth stainer! (That’s a good thing.)"

Unlimited Red 2003 Hundred Acre Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon Kayli Morgan Vineyard, Napa

"I was lucky enough to have had a bottle with friends in San Francisco. Wow. Worth the hype. Winemaker Philippe Melka strikes again. I am a huge fan of his Metisse proprietary red, but this is in a whole new league. It has a dark, purple color, with layers upon layers of vanilla, roasted coffee, cherry, spices, on the nose alone. Sweet, intense ripe red fruit with moderate tannins. An absolute explosion of taste."

-- Robb Walsh

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