Great Wine Buys for Valentine's Day
Bollinger Special Cuvée $46
This is my favorite nonvintage champagne. Made from 60 percent pinot noir and 40 percent chardonnay grapes, it's complexjust like love itself. One gets flavors of hazelnuts, toast, and fruit. My favorite food pairing would be caviar, gravilax, and smoked salmon. (Save the dark chocolate for a great banyuls.) But I would be happy to drink it by itselfor by myself.
Mary E. Bussell, wine consultant at K&D Wines and Spirits in New York City, www.wineaccess.com/store/kdwine
Nicolas Feuillatte Rose Champagne; $50
One my favorite for the price, the feuillatte has a luscious, full body. Strawberry and raspberry dominate the aroma, while the palate is a refreshing balance of fruit and acidity. I like it with Joseph Schmidt chocolate truffles.
Michael J. Osborne, founder of wine.com, www.wine.com
2000 Allegrini Amarone $70
This Amarone della Valpolicella, one of northern Italy's classic reds, is made from grapes dried in the air for months. The result is an intense dry red with a rich, slightly raisiny flavor. I like it with either a good piece of Parmigiano Reggiano for a cheese course, or a plate of dark chocolate truffles (not too sweet) dusted with cinnamon."
Dave Pohl, wine buyer at Northside Wine and Spirits, in Ithaca, New York, www.northsidewine.com
Krug Grand Cuvée NV $130
Krug is a legendary house that's famous for the richness and depth of its champagnes. The Grand Cuvée is (uniquely for such an expensive bottle) a nonvintage champagne, meaning that the grapes that make it are sourced from numerous vintages. The resulting wine is extraordinarily round and luxurious. If you're going to treat your special one this Valentine's Day, this one's worth it!
Stephen Bitterolf, Director of Fine Wine Writing at New York City's Crush Wine and Spirits, www.crushwineco.com
More on Wines:
• Uncork the Lowest Prices (Dec. 11, 2006)
• Great Wine Buys: An Expert's Picks (Dec. 1, 2006)