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):
<strong>Au Bon Climat, 2009 Santa Maria Valley, Harmony Nuits-Blanche au Bouge, Chardonnay,</strong> 13.5 percent alcohol, $35. A bright chardonnay with crisp acidity and good minerality. Notes of bright apple, pear and a hint of lemon. Refreshing.
<strong>Landmark Overlook, 2011 Sonoma County Chardonnay,</strong> 14 percent, $25. A lovely chardonnay with rich, yet bright flavors. Tasty notes of melon, pear, white peach and Meyer lemon. Lingering finish.
<strong>Grey Stack Cellars, 2012 Rosemary Block, Bennett Valley, Sonoma County Sauvignon Blanc,</strong> 14.3 percent, $33. A New Zealand-styled sauvignon blanc. Grassy, with notes of grapefruit, lime and a hint of jalape?. Crisp finish.
<strong>Argyle, 2011 Willamette Valley Reserve Pinot Noir,</strong> 13 percent, $40. A pinot with depth and plenty of personality. Notes of blackberry, dried cherry and herbs. Spicy finish.
<strong>Domaine Serene, 2007 Etoile Vineyard, Dundee Hills Chardonnay,</strong> 13.6 percent, $46. A fleshy chardonnay with bold fruit flavors and layered flavors. Notes of melon, pear, nectarine and apricot. Rich, yet manages to be balanced. Nice length.
<em>Want to share a current wine on your favorite restaurant's list? E-mail peg.melnik@ pressdemocrat.com or check out her Tasting Room blog at pressdemocrat.com.</em>
Shelters for Pawnee fire evacuees
Lower Lake High School, 9430 Lake St., Lower Lake, is the official shelter established for people evacuating from the Pawnee fire. It is equipped to handle animals.
The Clearlake Oaks Moose Lodge, 15900 E. Highway 20, Clearlake Oaks, is not authorized by the Office of Emergency Services but is also sheltering fire evacuees, mostly people in campers and RVs who want their animals with them.
There is an authorized Lake County animal services station in an open field at Highway 53 and Anderson Ridge Road in Lower Lake.