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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • 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...

  • 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...

  • 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

  • Joseph Carr

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

  • Estancia Estates

    Estancia’s winemakers strive to combine the best of both worlds: a state-of-the art winemaking fa...

  • Charles Shaw Winery

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

  • Matchbook

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

  • Livingston Cellars

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

  • 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

  • Myriad Cellars Beckstoffer Georges III Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Very attractive dark purple in the glass. Subdued nose of blue/black fruit. Nice hit of dried fruitblueberry, pruneon entry. Very tame tannins. Not the most mouth-filling CS. Nice acid makes the wine quite refreshing. Another case, though, where the whole seems greater than the sum of the parts. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Educated Guess Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley 2015

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by gntop1


  • Elevation 1250' 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Surprisingly not hot with a 14.5% alcohol by volume. Nothing too special. It was a little disjointed. Nothing offensive. I would expect more staying power and this had medium weight. Read More

    Wine review by connie7899


  • Cline Family Cellars Syrah Sonoma County 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Concentrated black berry aromas of savory earth and creamy oak. Black cherry and blackberry fruit flavors on the palate with a zesty acidity and liberal spice box flavors through the mid palate on to a tingling finish of jam, chocolate and toasted espresso beans. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Michael David Syrah 6th Sense 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Sweet and viscous on the tongue. Not the wine that I have followed for years. Not sure if it's just a flawed bottle or not. Read More

    Wine review by RandyFisher


  • Bogle Merlot 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Gift from the Drake's. Consumed some at the Gibson wake and the rest on Mother's Day 2018. Most liked it. I was not one of them. Read More

    Wine review by raindance


  • Acorn Alegria Vineyards Sangiovese Russian River Valley 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Dark plum, soft cherry and brown sugar aromas with a fruit forward, lightly perfumed strawberry and cherry pie filling note on the nose. Approachable and freshly fruited flavors of light oak and smoke with a mixed berry, dark cherry fruit blend and a finish of textured tannin and vanilla smoke. 90 pts Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Church & Mills Chardonnay 2016

    Snoothrank:

    This was about as floral on the nose as they come. Almost fake. However, it was both floral and crisp. Screw top and good price point. Read More

    Wine review by connie7899


  • Tank Garage All Or Nothing Red Blend Napa 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Floral notes of crushed violet and allspice with juicy black currant. Full bodied and full fruited on the palate with notes of licorice, dark mixed berry and black cherry, some earth and a medicinal note riding alongside through to the lightly tannic finish. Bold and assertive with a driving herbal and fruit profile. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Macmurray Estate Vineyards Select Pinot Noir Russian River Valley 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Light plum, cherry and raspberry aromas with a touch of an earthy note, floral mixed berry preserves and even some black fruit notes of black currant. Juicy and firm on the palate, creamy textured and generous with cherry cola notes and thick tannins providing good structure through to the finish of vanilla, cinnamon and licorice. 89 pts Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • 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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