Contra Costa Wine

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The Contra Costa County AVA is located within the San Francisco Bay region of California’s Central Coast. They say Contra Costa was “Napa before there was Napa,” referring to the region’s illustrious past into the early 20th century. But like much of California’s regions, the Prohibition and then the Great Depression forced many wineries to turn to other crops, walnuts being the most popular. Once the country was in economic recovery mode, this area near the Oakland Hills, so close to San Francisco, became known as a suburban Mecca. 

Though recently, due to very favorable climate conditions and soil types, vineyard planting has been on the rise. One major asset to the region is the sandy soil that many of the old vines were planted in was largely resistant to Phylloxera, so a fair amount of very old Zinfandel vines are still in use. Rhone grapes such as Syrah and Mourvedre (a.k.a. Mataro) are also popular, as well as Cabernet Sauvignon. ~Amanda Schuster
 
– Description from Amanda Schuster

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Popular wines made in Contra Costa under $20

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Varietals Produced in Contra Costa View all

  • Mourvèdre

    History of the grape: Monastrell is a native of Spain, first grown in Murviedro near Valencia, and was eventually bro...

  • 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...

  • Zinfandel

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

Popular Wineries in Contra Costa View all

  • Hannah Nicole Vineyards & Winery

    We never intended to be in the wine business. In 1999, we purchased ten acres of land in the hear...

  • Sterling Albert Winery

    Sterling Albert Winery is a dream that has come to life. From the day I planted my first grapevin...

  • viano vineyards

    Our century-old vineyard is nestled on hillsides surrounding a fertile little valley where coolin...

  • Cline Cellars

      Cline Cellars was founded in 1982 by Fred Cline, grandson of Valeriano Jacuzzi, founder of...

People getting updates on Contra Costa Wines

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Contra Costa on Snooth

  • Thoma Coyne made wine in the LV and seemed like the best prospect, but they ... area also includes areas of Contra Costa County from, say, Walnut Creek to San Ramon.  when I was a kid, there was wine out there, and lots of cattle, but we would never have gone there for the wineries, since we could get to Napa in only a little more time. Wente ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic "Whatever happened to..."


  • Cline Mourvèdre Contra Costa County Ancient Vines 2013

    Snoothrank:

    This is listed under the "Big and Bold" heading at Wine.com - They are right. This rating may be a point high, however - this was the biggest surprise out of a bottle of Cline I've ever experienced. Large blackberry, pepper - not over bearing, but large - chocolate, earth tones, fine grained and good acidity - Buy this and drink it - Paul 90 po... Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • Cline Cellars Mourvedre Contra Costa County Ancient Vines 2011

    Snoothrank:

    At five years much of the fruit has been tamed and balancing acid and tannin have stepped forward. A bit of earthiness has shown threw also. Nice wine. Read More

    Wine review by RandyFisher


  • DV, my father cut himself pretty well with a utility knife when I was a ... ... ... longer).  Lodi, the Contra Costa side of the Delta (home of some of the greatest old vine sites in California, with pre-phylloxera own rooted plants in sandy soil!) are also day trip possibilities.  Overnights to Sierra Foothills, Monterey County, are options f... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Time for an offline?


  • Bent Creek Wines Petite Sirah Port 2009

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Mr Dolce


  • Fenestra Winery Estate Infrared Gsm 2012

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Mr Dolce


  • Fenestra Winery Estate Infrared Gsm 2012

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Mr Dolce


  • Fenestra Winery Zinfandel 2012

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Mr Dolce


  • Bedrock Wine Company Evangelho Vineyard Heritage Contra Costa County 2013

    Snoothrank:

    The purple color is more red than blue. Pleasant enough fruity nose with, maybe, a hint of anise. Fruitier than I normally like on entryblueberry, prunea little too much sweetness for me. This is followed by some drying tannin. This wine needs acid to balance the fruitiness. Aftertaste is pleasant and lengthywhich, to me, shows the folly of... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Wente Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Livermore Valley 2008

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by smuratore


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