Check, Please! Bay Area's third season episode 2 (#302) profiles and reviews these three Bay Area restaurants:
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My name is Leslie Sbrocco and I’m the host of Check, Please! Bay Area. Each week, I will be sharing my tasting notes about the wine the guests and I drank on set during the taping of the show. Also, in my "What to Sip" suggestions, I choose one restaurant from each show and offer tips for selecting libations to enjoy with your meal.
Sponsor Wine: 2005 Beringer Private Reserve Chardonnay, Napa Valley, California
Prepare yourself for pure enjoyment with this powerful Chardonnay. Alluring aromas of toasted spice are followed by flavors of ripe melon and pineapple. It's a classic pairing with rich dishes like lobster, but you might want to simply savor a glass while watching the sunset.
2004 Tiger's Tale Cabernet Sauvignon, Margaret River, Australia
This popular selection hails from one of Western Australia's premier wine regions, Margaret River. Situated alongside the ocean, Margaret River is home to elegant styles of Cabernet Sauvignon. This affordable selection shows off its dark berry fruit flavors accented with a touch of fresh herbal notes.
What to Sip: Masa's
Created by charming Master Sommelier, Alan Murray, Masa's amazing wine program is a vinous playground. The list is lengthy and layered, offering some bottle options from under $30 to many well over $300. My suggestion for navigating the tome is to hail Alan down and have a chat. He and the rest of the Masa's staff are attentive, unpretentious, and beguilingly helpful.
Due to Masa's multi-course menu, you'll most likely want to try several types of wine. It's doable by consulting the by-the-glass program or the lovely selection of half bottles. Kick off with Schramsberg Brut Rose sparkling wine ($18 glass) then move into a half bottle of Tablas Creek Esprit ($36). This sultry white Rhone-style blend from California's Paso Robles area is smooth and full-bodied. For a red with pure finesse, order the half bottle of Ken Wright Canary Hill Pinot Noir from Oregon's Willamette Valley ($58).
The list is peppered with classic producers as well as innovative, lesser-known ones, making it a compelling read for those who love wine. Regardless of price, every bottle is topnotch, so you can't go wrong. Some of my favorites to watch for include: crisp and classy Craggy Range Sauvignon Blanc from Martinborough, New Zealand ($46), Domaine Raveneau Chablis Les Clos Grand Cru from Burgundy, France ($240), and Angelo Gaja's Ca'Marcanda "Promis." This Tuscan red blend from one of Italy's top producers is a real deal at $88.