Other impressive wines:

  • Ellen Landis tastes a syrah wine during the Harvest Fair wine judging, Wednesday Sept. 25, 2013 at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds in Santa Rosa. (Kent Porter / Press Democrat) 2013

Alexander Crown, 2010 Single Vineyard, Alexander Valley, Sonoma County, Cabernet Sauvignon, 15.5 percent, $75, 4 stars. A gorgeous cab with bright red fruit, crisp acidity and round flavors. It has a highbrow intensity. Striking.

Carol Shelton, 2010 Rocky Reserve, Florence Vineyard, Sonoma County Zinfandel, 14.8 percent. $35, 4 stars. A rock-star zin, jammy with snappy spice. Aromas and flavors of blackberry, boysenberry and cracked black pepper. Lush texture. Lingering finish. a knockout.

Dry Creek Vineyard, 2011 Somers Ranch, Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County Zinfandel, 14.5 percent, $38, 4 stars. A complex zin with great structure. Notes of blackberry, strawberry and cinnamon, with a hint of chocolate. Ripe tannins. Nice length.

Sebastiani, 2011 Sonoma County Cabernet Sauvignon, 13.5 percent, $19, 3? stars. A cab with good bones (structure). Complex, with a range of flavors: blackberry, tea, toasty oak and a hint of raspberry. Balanced. Firm tannins.

Wine writer Peg Melnik can be reached at 707-521-5310 or peg.melnik@pressdemocrat.com.

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