Montes 2000 Colchagua Valley Reserve Merlot ($10.49)
Inky garnet, almost black. Spicy blackcurrant aromas are full and ripe, oak playing counterpoint to fruit. Tart, juicy berry flavors backed by puckery tannins; so much fruit that it's quite drinkable now, but the rather harsh tannins suggest it will benefit from a little cellar time. Balance and acidity make it a natural at the table, and serving it slightly chilled definitely polishes its youthful rough edges on a summer evening. US Importer: T.G.I.C. Imports Inc., Woodland Hills, Calif. (Jul 28, 2002)

FOOD MATCH: Fine with roast chicken.



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