Wine and Spirits
Chris Sherman's May 2011 Drink Picks
Langoureau Bourgogne Blanc
Fast-rising family winery in the Cote de Beaune delivers elegant chardonnay from vineyards next to the Montrachets. Quality at all levels, from village to premier cru. Vintage alert: 2009 Burgundies, red and white, are terrific. Buy them early because the 2010 crop was down a third and '10s will be scarce and dear.
Brancaia Il Blu
It's so red it's purple. Half sangiovese, the rest merlot and a touch cab, this is all Tuscan from one of the smartest cellars there. Well balanced between raspberry fruit and crisp minerality, 2005 vintage is a good one and ready to drink.
The black raspberry cordial is just a strand of flavor and rosy hue floating through 75-proof vodka. Hints of vanilla, too. Try it with bubbly in a French 75 but go light on the sweeteners.