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

  • 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...

  • Merlot

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

  • 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

  • Tisdale Vineyards

    Since its inception, the hallmark of E. & J. Gallo Winery’s founders has been their unwavering co...

  • Glass Mountain

    It has been more than hundred years since California wine pioneer Jean Laurent quarried stone fro...

  • Carlo Rossi Vineyards

    Every year the Great Central Valley of California provides harvests of uniquely delicious grapes....

  • Barefoot Cellars

    We got our start as a "garage wine" back in the Sixties but really stepped up what Barefoot wa...

  • Rex Goliath

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

  • Middle Sister

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

Page 1 of 1,000

California on Snooth

  • Quivet Cellars Pellet Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Lots of berry on the nose. Some phenols. Big hit of blackberry and cassis on the tip of the tongue. Then Im getting the acidvery close to citric. Very tame tannin for a wine of this youth. I am betting that this wine would not be a favorite among Napa Valley CS fans. It is super approachable. On the other hand, Pinot Noir fans may find th... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc Viognier 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Binny's 6/2017. Read More

    Wine review by raindance


  • Buena Vista Carneros Pinot Noir 2012

    Snoothrank:

    In the glass the wine is translucent and with a brownish tinge to it. On the ... that has been the rage with California PNs, these days. On the other hand, Ive had worsemuch worse. In all honesty, the sensation fades fairly quickly. Sturdier tannin that I see in most CA PNs. To me that makes it taste more like winea good thing. Also very... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • And yet at times it has seemed as if the two men were Humpty and Dumpty, ... ... to do this,"Outgoing California Democratic Party chairman John Burton left his position by waving his middle fingers in the air and leading the convention hall in a chant of “F*ck Donald Trump.” Nancy Pelosi was on stage with him and joined in.Nebraska Congressman... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Current thoughts on our...


  • Robert Mondavi Napa Valley Pinot Noir 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Sorta confused by this. Notes of dark cherry and plum as thew winery says are fine, but there is a layered mintiness to this that seems out of place, but adds to the overall freshness on the palate. Cinnamon, chewy tannins are worth it. Drink now - 88 points - Paul Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • Sorry guys, I never new about this forum. From now on I will post on ... We ... ... We are the first AMPM in California to have an actual wine bar. You can also choose from a 100 different craft beers as well!!!!! Come in and check us out! Read More

    Forum post in the topic ELK GROVE Wine Tasting For...


  • Simply Naked 'Unoaked' Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Nothing good but the price but on the other hand it was drinkable. Read More

    Wine review by RandyFisher


  • I'd be curious, too, Stephen. Drank a lot of their product back in the ... ... 'Judgment of Paris' California wine boom, and considered relative pioneers. Their cabs aged pretty well, as did their chards. Haven't had any that I can remember since the millennium. Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


  • Woodwork Zinfandel 2013

    Snoothrank:

    This Zinfandel was bought for $4.99 on a closeout at Trader Joe's. It's normally supposed to be a roughly $15 bottle. At $5 it was a screaming bargain. It compares quite nicely to the zinfandels I've been getting for $4-$8 at Grocery Outlet on similar closeouts. I wish this were still available at Trader Joe's, as I would surely pick up a c... Read More

    Wine review by Dougman


  • Light should not be a problemAmbient temperature range is biggest issue - ... ... to 15C/59F is a challenge in California and most of Australia so active cooling is required&nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic How not to store wine


  • 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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