Le Mas des Collines 1998 Gigondas ($18.49)
Inky dark garnet, breathing plummy fruit so ripe that it's almost "grapey" at first. Opens up with swirling and time in the glass to show herbs and spice and juicy black plums on the nose and palate: Full fruit built on a firm acidic structure. Palatable but distinct tannins suggest that additional aging will pay dividends, but it's very approachable now. US Importer: J et R Selections Ltd., Mount Pleasant, Mich. (Oct 12, 2002)

FOOD MATCH: Just right in a mixed-Mediterranean match with an Italian pasta favorite, ragu Bolognese.

WEB LINK: http://www-personal.umich.edu/~mwolly/tc475/catalog1.htm

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