November 16, 2007
France Rules

Now that the Wine Spectator has completed its countdown of the top 10 wines for 2007, what are the surprises? None, really. As usual, high-priced wines dominated the list. And as usual, the roundup was spread rather fairly among the regions seen as the globe's top wine producers - France, Italy, California and Australia.

The magazine's editors really like the 2005 vintage from Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Two of the top three wines were from the appellation, the Le Vieux Donjon at number three, the Clos des Papes at number one. Even if those two can't be found hereabouts, any of the 2005s from Chateauneuf-du-Pape might be worth seeking, especially if you aren't already familiar with the robust and complex wines of the appellation.

For Californians, the big surprise on the list is the number-two wine, the 2005 Santa Cruz Mountains Chardonnay from Ridge Vineyards, a winery customarily recognized more for its cabernet sauvignon and its wide range of zinfandels. The chardonnay also may not be easy to find, with just 2,000 cases made, but the $35 price makes it appealing to enthusiasts of the varietal.

The top-10 list can be found here.

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