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

  • Carlo Rossi Vineyards

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

  • Livingston Cellars

    Since 1984 and 17 years, the de facto estate wine of Livingston Moffett winery has been bottled ...

  • Dark Horse Wine

    Named 2007 Winemaker of the Year by the Sonoma County Harvest Fair, winemaker Michael Loykasek ha...

  • Almaden Vineyards

    For over 150 years, Almaden Vineyards wines have been welcome at America's table. We offer a wide...

  • Middle Sister

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

  • Canyon Road Winery

    Inspired by the scenic roads that wander through California’s stunning wine country, Rafael Jofre...

Page 6 of 1,000

California on Snooth

  • 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


  • Dashe Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel 2013

    Snoothrank:

    $19.99 tons of fruit flavor and spice. Full of Blackberry and cherry flavor. I love this wine. Pairs well with a peppery steak Read More

    Wine review by BobbyC10


  • Actually, Stephen, proper cellars in many parts of California are fine at getting to that temp. Problem is there are very few of them in CA since standard construction has almost never included proper basements similar to those further east. So you'll need to either add something after purchasing a house, or include in the design when building f... Read More

    Forum post in the topic How not to store wine


  • Did you buy through the winery or a brick and mortar?  I'm very ... ... the same DNA structure as California Zinfandel."Thanks for that. Pa Read More

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


  •  This is an interesting wine.  My understanding is that Tribidrag is ... much more subtley than any California Zin.  Everything seems so much more understated--berry/cherry fruit, tannin, acid all hold their own but seem to yield to the other.  I had the L-M '12 Tribidrag a few years ago, and  I don't think I liked it as much as this on Read More

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


  • Lagier Meredith Tribidrag 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Very dark purple color. Nose of violets and blueberries. Spritzy entry of tart cherry. Mellows out as it passes back. Now it's like unsweetened plum juice. Moderate tannin. Fairly quick finish. This is an enjyable and interesting wine of subtlety. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Sterling Vineyards Vintners Collection Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by chriscage


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