Wine list

Press Democrat wine writer Peg Melnik scopes out restaurant wine lists around the North Bay, looking for good value and the occasional splurge. This week's picks (prices are retail; restaurant markup varies):

Cline, 2011 North Coast Viognier, 14 percent alcohol, $12. Aromatic with layered flavors. Notes of apricot, peach and pineapple. Bright, yet rich. Oily texture. Lingering finish.

Las Rochas, 2009 Vinas Viejas de San Alexjandro Garnacha, 15 percent, $20. A great quaffer. Notes of black cherry, herbs and cracked black cherry. Snappy.

Le Cigare Blanc, 2010 Bonny Doon Vineyard White Wine, 12.7 percent, $24. A white wine with a range. Notes of pear, quince, herbs and mineral. Subtle and yet there's a lot going on. Nice length.

De Lorimier Winery, 2009 Stone Ranch, Alexander Valley, Sonoma County Zinfandel, 15 percent, $29. Ripe, but not over the top. Concentrated flavors of black cherry, plum, herbs and cracked black pepper. Zesty.

Ridge, 2010 Lytton Estate Petite Sirah, 14.3 percent, $30. A rustic red with some punch. Rich black juice, briary spice and chewy tannins. Boisterous.

Zaca Mesa, 2009 Santa Ynez Valley White Wine, 14.5 percent, $30. A complex blend with a lot of personality. Rich and layered, with notes of apricot, melon, pear, fig, honey and spice. Silky texture. Lingering finish.

Bella, 2009 Maple Vineyards, Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel, 14.4 percent, $38. A juicy zin with notes of black cherry, anise and a zesty undercurrent of spice. Peppery finish.

Terre Rouge, 2008 L'autre Sierra Foothills Rhone Red Blend, 14.5 percent, $30. A tasty red with notes of cherry, herb and spice. Nice acidity. Balanced.

Landmark, 2010 Steel Plow Estate Vineyard, Sonoma Valley Grenache,14.8 percent, $35. A lovely grenache with bright acidity and concentrated flavors. Notes of cherry, herbs and spice. A wine with some depth.

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