The foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains are full of riches. From the 49ers, those original silver and gold miners of the last century to today's vinous pioneers, these rolling hills have contributed to California's colorful history.
While the hills proved a picturesque challenge to the miners, their gently rolling undulations provide winemakers with a variety of soils and elevations that are key to moderating some of the effects California's warm climate may have on wines and the ability to grow world class grapes. This wonderful variety not only makes this region a first class tourist attraction but it also allows pioneering winemakers to produce great wines from a variety of grapes that is unmatched in this country!
Sobon - a family affair dedicated to sustainable farming, and great wine!The Sierra Foothill's forte has always been their deep, flavorful old vine Zinfandel. Many of these hillside vineyards were originally planted to supply the 49ers and now are gloriously mature. Sobon has consistently captured the wonderful fruit of these vines, allowing them to express themselves in classic style.
Sobon Estate Zinfandel Old Vines 2007
Lovely brambly notes of sapwood, herb and wild black raspberry fruit edged with a touch of pipe tobacco on the nose lead to bright, zesty black raspberry fruit on the palate. A great bottle for a Bar-be-que.
Ironstone Vineyards - A pioneer growing premium grapes in the Foothills.Ironstone Vineyards is one of the Sierra Foothills' premium producers of Bordeaux blends. By intelligently adding small amounts of blending grapes and allowing the wines time to age in barrel in the deep, cool caverns under the winery, Ironstone has created nuanced wines in a satisfyingly smooth style.
Ironstone Vineyards Cabernet Franc Reserve 2006
A big, velvety richly fruited yet fresh wine packed with bright cherry tones and light vanilla and earth notes with just a hint of mint chocolate shavings helping to frame the fruit. Serve this with grilled lamb.
Vino Noceto - This Tuscan styled estate is a relative newcomer to the region.Recognizing that the climate of Amador County's Shenandoah Valley was Mediterranean in nature, family owned Vino Noceto took a brave and unique path, choosing to focus on premium Sangiovese based wine as opposed to sticking to the Zinfandel roots of the region.
Noceto Sangiovese 2006
Big, rich sweet cherry fruit with just a hint of oak is well supported by classic slightly astringent Sangiovese tannins and good acidity giving this a refreshing feel. Medium bodied with a lightness that keeps this lively despite the intensity of the fruit. Grill up a veal chop to serve with this wonderful wine.
Amador Foothill Winery - Leading the way with innovative wines!With plantings that range from Aglianico to Zinfandel, it should come as no surprise that Amador Foothill Winery is leading the way with innovative wines from the Sierra Foothills. From Rose to Rhone Blend, and never forgetting the Zinfandel, this is a winery that delivers.
Amador Foothill Rosato of Sangiovese 2008
Simply a great rose with extremely pretty, pure wild berry/wild cherry fruit tones that feature a great interplay of acid/fruit on the palate. Finishes full of wild raspberry tones with hints of earth and spice. The picnic Rose of 2009.