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

  • Pinot Noir

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

  • 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...

  • Syrah

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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • Merlot

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

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...

  • 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 Cruz Mountains

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

Popular Wineries in California View all

  • Sullivan Vineyards

    Arriving in the Napa Valley in 1972, Jim and JoAnna Sullivan purchased property in Rutherford, wh...

  • Matchbook

    Our Vision. "Produce wines we love to drink at prices we don't mind paying

  • Glass Mountain

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

  • Barefoot Cellars

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

  • Carlo Rossi Vineyards

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

  • 3 Blind Moose

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

Page 5 of 1,000

California on Snooth

  • Murphy-Goode Island Block Chardonnay Alexander Valley 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Slightly hot aromas of dried apricot, honeysuckle and peach. More peach and citrus aromas, a hint of bay leaf and cut lemongrass, green apple, vanilla and a long finish of butter and tea leaf. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Fritz Chardonnay Russian River Valley 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Green apple and honey aromas are light and fresh with a bit of fresh cut mango and papaya. Full and round mouthfeel, a bit chunky and certainly pleasant, with peach pit, more mango, green apple, a bit of lemon meringue and a touch of cream on the long finish. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Jordan Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley 2010

    Snoothrank:

    Elegant and mellow red fruit aromas of cassis and strawberry along with a floral note. This delicate and delicious Cabernet is soft and supple in the mouth, with balanced acidity and ripe blackberry fruit, gentle leather and cocoa notes mix with a bit of black cherry and coffee. For lovers of a gentler, silky style of Cabernet which is perfectly... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • The Ojai Vineyard White Hawk Vineyard Sangiovese 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Very attractive red color in the glass. Not the biggest nose in the worldmostly, earthy, slightly musty herbal thing. Very light (for red wine) bodied, and, wow, tart. I love the acidity of Sangiovese-based Chianti, but this is way, way over the top. There are some red-fruit flavors herecherry, raspberrybut they are also very light. Its sim... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Apothic Dark Limited Release 2014

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Purplepolkadotts


  • Schug Chardonnay Carneros 2012

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by runningbear


  • Murphy-Goode Cabernet Sauvignon California 2011

    Snoothrank:

    I found this to be a fairly average Cabernet Sauvignon. It has a fairly heavy and rich flavor as it hits the tongue but is awfully dry and doesn't last long. I thought for the price it was not quite what it should be but not a bad wine by any stretch of the imagination. Read More

    Wine review by tomlib


  • Back at the home front.Well, the Morroccan dinner last Thursday at Ojai ... ... thing that ever happened to California Merlot.After the big Merlot, the Syrah seemed a bit light-weight.  I liked it, but I really think they should offer that one between the Pinot and the Merlot.The Riesling had an RS of about 1%.  So, sweetness was clearly detec... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


  • Rock Wall Petite Sirah Jack's 2011

    Snoothrank:

    Opened this '11 Rock Wall Petite Sirah three nights ago. Petite my arse, loads of dark fruit but also big gritty tannins, so I'm letting it sit in time out for a while in hopes of it starting to behave.Two days later this tooth stainer has calmed down a bit. Big structurally with mouth coating fresh black and dark red fruit but the tannins have ... Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0


  • Dearly Beloved I Thee Red 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Had 2012...good staying power in fridge. Had a sweetness to it when the bottle was opened originally which tasted fake. With time, that went away.Well balanced. A little too dry, but liked by those who enjoy dry wine. Read More

    Wine review by connie7899


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