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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • Syrah

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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Merlot

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

  • Zinfandel

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

  • 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 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...

Popular Wineries in California View all

  • Middle Sister

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

  • Rex Goliath

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

  • Carlo Rossi Vineyards

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

  • Rockledge Vineyards

    High on the eastern slopes of Napa Valley just south of the town of St. Helena is a saddle covere...

  • Cupcake Vineyards

    Our winery is located in Monterey County, California where warm days give way to cool nights a...

  • Matchbook

    This is a duplicate winery page of Matchbook Wine Company: http://www.snooth.com/winery/matchbo...

Page 5 of 1,000

California on Snooth

  • You guys are not going to believe this one.  Better sit down while you ... ... and one Chardonnay from California.  It was by invitation only.  Our neighbors Rick & Debbie were hosting this event - they are the couple we've been sharing wine dinners with over the past few years.  All bottles were put in paper bags to conceal their identity an... Read More

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


  • Sanford Pinot Noir la Rinconada Vineyard 2012

    Snoothrank:

    very good balance of fruits, oak, and mild spices. comparable to 1er Cru Burgundy. Read More

    Wine review by Dennis Lim


  • September Hill Merlot 2012

    Snoothrank:

    too spicy... Read More

    Wine review by Dennis Lim


  • Ridge Geyserville 2007

    Snoothrank:

    Somewhat of a sour nose. Quite light hit of berry fruit on the tip of the tongue. Tannins are diminished to a chalky sensation. Very delightful on the rear palate. It seems like an integrated, mature wine experience in that areavery smooth. Sourness detected on the nose seems to have dissipated with just a few minutes of air. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Sea Pines Vineyard Old Vine Petite Sirah 2014

    Snoothrank:

    A bit too dry. Uncharacteristic dryness of a petite sirah. Good balance on tannins. Fruit forward. Mostly red fruit flavors like red raspberry. Read More

    Wine review by connie7899


  • Zin-Phomaniac Reserve Old Vines Zinfandel Sonoma County 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Cool blueberry and black cherry fruit with oregano and mixed dried herb on the nose with mixed baking spice. Much warmer and richer on the palate, with zesty spiciness, a bloom of acidity, and red fruit flavors of cherry, raspberry, strawberry, and clove and cinnamon spice on the finish. A touch of sweet spice and fruit gives a bit of an illusio... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • William Hill Estate Winery Cabernet Sauvignon Napa 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Dark blackberry and oak spice open on the nose with cocoa and black cherry playing a secondary role. This is bold and fruity in the mouth, richly textured and silky on entry with vanilla cream and chocolate cherry pie notes, chalky and earthy blackberry and black olive notes on the mid palate and a zesty spiced cinnamon and clove finish that bar... Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Pine Ridge Chenin Blanc-Viognier California 2014

    Snoothrank:

    I love this unpretentious wine. Floral accents, stone fruits, a touch of sugar and a slight effervescence lead to a framed acidic finish. Well done year after year. 89 points - drink now - Paul Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • Were those cases stashed for posterity or just forgotten? Let's see, ... see, in 1978, I moved from California to MA.  The Red Sox and Yankees had a one game playoff.  Bucky Dent hit a home run to win it for the Yanks.  Keith Moon died that fall.  Earlier in the year there was a big blizzard in Boston.  (Part of how we came to live there.)  I ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic 1978 Wines Found


  • Roederer Estate Brut Anderson Valley NV

    Snoothrank:

    Wonderful as usual. Apples, nuttiness, a slight touch of cherry with a cripness and acidity that give this an excellent finish. 91 points - drink now - Paul. Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


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