Crios de Susana Balbo 2004 Mendoza Syrah-Bonarda ($17.00)
This is a very dark reddish-purple wine, almost black, shading to a bright garnet edge. Black plums and blueberries combine in a fruit-forward aroma with a whiff of smoke. Dark-fruit and berry flavors are consistent with the nose, extracted but fresh; it's built on a sturdy core of mouth-watering acidity and soft, palatable tannins. US Importer: Vine Connections, Sausalito, Calif. (Jul 10, 2006)

FOOD MATCH: Its fruit-forward, slightly smoky and structured character make it a natural with grilled meat or barbecue; it was fine, too, with a flavorful combination of bite-size chunks of pork spareribs braised with onions, garlic and fresh tomatoes.



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