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September 2009

The Good Earth

In Making Sense of Wine, Matt Kramer describes sipping a good bottle as “eavesdropping on conversations of the Earth.” What greater extravagance could we ask for than to listen to the world’s finest wine regions through our palates?

Château Mouton Rothschild 2000 (Bordeaux, France), $1,200: One of the five prestigious First Growths, Château Mouton offers extraordinary original art labels accompanied by opulent flavor. This vintage is among the most stunning in decades. Château d’Yquem 1995 (Sauternes, France), $375: A desirable fungus, Botrytis cinerea, dehydrates the grapes and concentrates the sugars in this dessert wine­—one of the most sought after in the world. Château d’Yquem is marvelous to drink by itself or with foie gras. Philipponnat “Clos des Goisses” 1991 (Champagne, France), $170: Tiny “Clos des Goisses” is among the region’s most lauded vineyards. Only very seriously made Champagnes bear a vintage, and this one’s called “madly delicious” by aficionado Richard Juhlin. Lewis Cellars Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 (Napa, California), $150: Limited production and the careful crafting of fruit from the best Napa appellations makes Lewis’ Reserve bottlings a California cab- lover’s delight. Enjoy nuances of mocha, dark fruit, and cigar-box spice. Domaines Ott Château Romassan Rosé 2007 (Bandol, France), $55: One of the world’s finest rosé wines, Château Romassan is a blend of the South of France’s three principal grapes: grenache, cinsault, and mourvèdre.