Press Democrat wine writer Peg Melnik scopes out wine lists around the North Bay, looking for good value and the occasional splurge. This week's picks (prices are retail; restaurant markup varies):
MacPhail, 2013 Sonoma Coast Ros? of Pinot Noir, 14.5 percent alcohol, $22. This dry ros?is crisp and clean, with notes of strawberry, raspberry, rose petal and mineral. Balanced. Impressive.
Lawson's Dry Hills, 2013 Reserve Marlborough, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, 14 percent, $23. Outstanding. Grassy, with vibrant notes of grapefruit, lemon, lime and spicy jalape?. Zesty finish. Nice length.
Ferrari-Carano, 2011 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir, 14.3 percent, $38. A layered pinot noir with a range of flavors — rhubarb, cherry, cranberry, toasty oak and caramel. Lush texture. Nice length.
Bedrock Wine Co., 2012 Lorenzo's Heritage Dry Creek Valley, Sonoma County Red Wine, 14.9 percent, $42. A striking red that's dripping with fruit. Aromas and flavors of blackberry, cassis and cracked black pepper. Lingering finish. A knockout.
Martinelli, 2008 Vellutini Ranch Russian River Valley Syrah, 16.4 percent, $75. A gorgeous syrah with depth. Aromas and flavors of blackberry, blueberry and cracked black pepper. A standout.