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):
Edna Valley Vineyard, 2011 Central Coast Sauvignon Blanc, 13.9 percent alcohol, $15. A lively sauvignon blanc with bright acid and layered flavors of grapefruit, peach, guava, mineral and spice. Crisp finish.
Laguna, 2010 Laguna Ranch Vineyard, Russian River Valley Chardonnay, 14.5 percent, $22. A tropical chardonnay that's lightly oaked. Complex, with notes of honeysuckle, pineapple and spice. Good acidity married with big flavors. A knockout.
Trione, 2010 River Road Ranch, Russian River Valley Sauvignon Blanc, 14 percent, $23. An aromatic sauvignon blanc with layered flavors. Notes of peach, mineral and spice. Seamless texture. Lingering finish.
Tyler Florence Pinot 10, 2010 Gallery Vineyard, Napa Valley, 14.7 percent, $40. A very tasty pinot with high-toned red fruit, bright acid and great minerality. Balanced. Nice length.
Shafer, 2010 Napa Valley Merlot, 15.3 percent, $50. A seamless merlot that has great bones. Tasty black and red fruit with notes of black cherry, cherry and plum. Earthy.