Best Cellars

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Traveler 1104

Pop ski country's top corks at these mountain-town wine vaults.

Rainbow Ranch Lodge >Big Sky, Mont.

The subterranean, river-rock-lined Bacchus Room holds some 6,500 bottles-including labels from Austria, France, Portugal and Spain-at prices ranging from $20 to $2,000. Proprietor Patrick Hurd is the only certified sommelier in Montana. Ask him for a cellar tour.

Collector's Pick

Hurd's new favorite, a 2000 Littorai, Hirsch Vineyard, Sonoma Pinot Noir ($110)

Contact

800-937-4132; rainbowranch.com

The Post Hotel >Lake Louise, Alb.

The wine cellar at the fabled Post Hotel draws oenophiles from around the world, thanks to an inventory of 28,500 bottles. This season, the hotel will install a tasting table.

Collector's Pick

A Burgundy such as the 1959 Musigny Domaine Comte Georges de Vogue ($830)

Contact

800-661-1586; posthotel.com

Plumpjack Squaw Valley Inn >Olympic Valley, Calif.

The PlumpJack is the only hotel in ski country actually owned by a vineyard-PlumpJack Winery of Napa. The cellar holds 4,000 bottles, including many hard-to-find California wines. The tasting room offers a chance to sample some of them ($5).

Collector's Pick

Limited edition PlumpJack vintages, such as a 2001 PlumpJack Estate Cabernet Cork ($58)

Contact

707-945-1220; plumpjack.com

The Inn at Sawmill Farm >West Dover, Vt.

A Green Mountain inn lauded by Wine Spectator for its immense wine list-28,000 bottles-the hotel's cellar counts in its possession some truly rare vintages from around the world. The Inn hosts wine events and cellar tours throughout the year.

Collector's Pick

Reisling Clos St. Hune Trimbach 1993 from Alsace, for more adventurous palates ($205)

Contact

802-464-8131; theinnatsawmillfarm.com

NOVEMBER 2004