Elsa 1998 Malbec, Argentina, approximately $9.00/bottle.

The classic Malbec aromas of ripe plum and violets are evident in the nose with hints of sweet vanilla. The beauty of the Malbec grape, especially those grown in Argentina like Elsa, is its ability to combine a rich weighty mouthful with a soft silkiness normally associated with lighter wines. A complex, yet, inexpensive alternative to many 'reserve' reds with similar finesse. If you have not tried Malbec (which is a real grape, honest) it is something to consider the next time you purchase a red wine. Simple, fun and quite tasty. Yes, I realize I am babbling.

Nick Conti