Californian Wine

Viticulture in California began in the 1700s as Spanish missionaries worked their way north from the South American colonies. Grapes (of the Mission, a.k.a. Pais, variety) were originally planted with the intention of producing ceremonial wine and the first wineries were established for the cultivation of Mission grapes. From these beginnings, Parisian oenologist Jean Louis Vignes is credited with being the first person to import European vines for general consumption to Los Angeles in 1833. 

 
This was followed in the 1850’s with Hungarian businessman  Agoston Haraszthy, who came to California after establishing businesses in Wisconsin. Finding the prevalent Mission grape to be of inferior quality, he began to select high quality vines from Europe and established vineyards in Crystal Springs outside San Francisco with the help of a government viticulture grant. Though found culpable for some shady business practices outside the wine industry, he was able to relocate his vines Read more »

Mentor for Californian Wines

Eric Guido

Food and Wine Writer for Snooth Media, Chef, Musician, Poet, Wine Lover, and Workaholic. Owner, Chef and Writer for The V.I.P. Table.

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Popular wines made in California under $20

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Varietals Produced in California View all

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • Zinfandel

    Parentage of the grape: Crljenak to Austria to America. In the 1970s, claims surfaced that the Italian Primitivo is l...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

Subregions of California

  • Amador County

      Amador County, in the Sierra Foothills district of California, is named for mid-1840s ranc...

  • Central Coast

      Central Coast is a vast AVA that spans between Santa Barbara County in the south to the Sa...

  • Lake County

    Lake County is an emerging wine region within California’s North Coast, north of Napa. Clear La...

  • Mendocino County

      Mendocino County AVA is a large and climatically diverse region within the North Coast reg...

  • Monterey County

      The Monterey County AVA is part of the Central Coast region in California, below San Franc...

  • Napa County

    There is some debate over how this famous wine region got its name. Spanish settlers named the ...

  • North Coast

      The North Coast AVA is a region that spans eight counties and dozens of prestigious subreg...

  • San Francisco Bay

    AVA is one of California’s ‘Mega’ appellations. This vast AVA, covering over 1.5 million acres, ...

  • San Luis Obispo County

      San Luis Obispo is part of the larger wine Central Coast region of California, located at ...

  • Santa Barbara County

    The Santa Barbara County AVA lies within the Central Coast territory of California. Like much o...

  • Santa Cruz Mountains

      The Santa Cruz Mountains AVA is a vast region within San Francisco Bay in California’s Cen...

  • Calaveras

    is a picturesque and remote area in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Popular with o...

  • Contra Costa

    The Contra Costa County AVA is located within the San Francisco Bay region of California’s Cent...

  • El Dorado County

    The spectacular Sierra Nevada range offers a fitting backdrop to the vineyards of El Dorado Count...

Popular Wineries in California View all

  • Ca' Momi Wines

    "Ca’ Momi” wines are named for our family home in Northern Italy. The name also pays tribute to M...

  • Rex Goliath

    At age 70, I have had at least 50 yrs. of a glass of wine after my evening meals. Just recently,...

  • Joseph Carr

    Joseph Carr wines are produced at Larson Family Vineyards in Carneros, bordering both Napa and So...

  • Middle Sister

    Because we remember swim lessons and day camp and beach houses. Because we forget bad boyfriends,...

  • 3 Blind Moose

    Truth be told, the moose aren’t blind. They just think it’s cool to share good wine with friends,...

  • Charles Shaw Winery

    The Charles Shaw label is best known for producing wines of “extreme value.” These became popul...

Page 1 of 1,000

California on Snooth

  • Sterling Vineyards Vintners Collection Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Gift from Mom, 9/21/17. Read More

    Wine review by raindance


  • Rodney Strong Symmetry Red Meritage Alexander Valley 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Black cherry and cherry cola aromas with floral violets and fresh baking spice. Dark, brooding and richly spiced on the palate, smoky and earthy on entry with faint heat and blackberry, black currant and black cherry fruit, concentrated fruit and a finish of earth and leather. A bold wine with plenty of potential to develop. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Beaulieu Vineyard Bv Tapestry Reserve Napa Valley 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Dark blackberry and black currant fruit with medium heat, tea leaf, vanilla bean and rich cream on the nose. Full bodied, textured and firm on the palate with dark blackberry preserve and black currant fruit, plum and a hint of cranberry on the mid palate and a finish of gripping tannins and dark chocolate espresso beans. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Rodney Strong Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Spicy cinnamon and vanilla bean aromas with chocolate cherry and mineral earth. Loads of dark berry flavors with cherry, fizzy cola and fresh spice - berry approachable and pleasant with a creamy texture to the finish and assertive but gentle tannins. Very nice. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • The Prisoner Zinfandel Cabernet Sauvignon Petite Sirah 2013

    Snoothrank:

    tolerable tannins and great acidity, fruit and spice Syrah, Petite Sirah Beginner but this sole my heart along with their white blend Blindfold Read More

    Wine review by Joie11


  • Rombauer Chardonnay Carneros Napa 2015

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by ShanonDean


  • Rombauer Chardonnay 3 2015

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by ShanonDean


  • Silk Oak Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Cranky Don


  • Flora Springs Family Select Chardonnay 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Lemon cream and butterscotch aromas with gentle floral notes and baking spice. Smooth and velvety on entry with vanilla and brioche notes to start, developing more towards citrus and apple fruit on the palate and releasing a refreshing zesty lemon acidity on the finish. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • EMARK - I am not much on white wine either.  Miss the good big California chards, like gruners, vinho verdes and sauv blancs.  Don't have to be really expensive either.62 Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines - Post Pictures...


  • Thank you very much for this information. I love the wine!. http://usaphen375.com

    Comment by 1160807capitanoensy 1160807 capitanoensy


  • Beyond the Vine (www.4beyondthevine.com) has completed it’s first in a series of blind tasting to find the best Syrah producer in Santa Clara County. The first flight was a good representation of 12 Syrah from south Santa Clara County and one inexpensive mystery bottle. Entries were as follows; ’07 Clos La Chance, ’07 Creek View, ’07 Fernwood, ...

    Comment by 921334greg112558 921334 greg112558


  • zinfandel

    Comment by 579496Didu 579496 Didu


  • Zinfandel

    Comment by 579496Didu 579496 Didu


  • Is there a winery in or near Pleasanton, CA that has a good merlot? My daughter is there working and I wanted her to pick me up some local wine.

    Comment by 541781Pam Burns 541781 Pam Burns


  • Does anyone have any comments about Peay Wines?

    Comment by 512854hawks8999 512854 hawks8999


  • Has anyone ever heard of "Kitchen Sink" vineyards? I was given a bottle of KITCHEN SINK red........it was a mixture of cabernet, petite Sirah, merlot, zinfandel. It was actually a nice surprise in taste. I just don't know where to get it......is it expensive or inexpensive? Would like an opinion from someone.

    Comment by 156349shari duff 156349 shari duff


  • New image uploaded to this page.

    Page modification by 33093Chris Carpita 33093 Chris Carpita


  • This a most amazing,wine growing state.We have such an array of decent to great wines to please the novice all the way to the greatest wine snob.-to be continued....

    Comment by 308614THEDOGE 308614 THEDOGE


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