El Dorado Wine

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This is Gold Rush country...home of the Mother Lode! But these days, this storied region is cashing in on a new crop. This appellation seems to be the new promised land for aspiring California wine makers. The fortunes of this unique AVA are dictated by its elevation, with allowable vineyard land situated between 1,200-3,500 feet. Vineyards above 2,000-feet, resting on high-acid, magma-based soils, enjoy four distinct seasons. Rising above the fog line, El Dorado experiences eastern breezes from the Sierra Nevada Mountains, which force hot daytime air into the valley below. Land remains affordable and provides all of the attributes for successful grape cultivation. By far the most planted grape in this region is Zinfandel, however, the more profitable Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are both gaining ground, and the wineries that call this appellation home are now experimenting with classic Rhone varietals as well. – Description from Appellation America (view original content)

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Popular wines made in El Dorado under $20

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Varietals Produced in El Dorado View all

  • 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...

  • Palomino

    History of the grape: Palomino is split into three types: Palomino Fino, Palomino de Jerez and Palomino Basto. All of...

Popular Wineries in El Dorado View all

  • Crystal Basin Cellars

    Crystal Basin Cellars has its roots in amateur cooperative winemaking. Beginning under the house ...

  • Lava Cap Winery

    Lava Cap Winery is a family owned and operated winery in the beautiful Sierra Foothills of Califo...

  • Shadow Ranch

    In the Heart of El Dorado’s Fair Play Region nestled in the Sierra Foothills is the Shadow ...

  • Holly's Hill Vineyards

    Holly's Hill is completely focused on producing Rhone varietal wines. In fact, the estate vineyar...

  • Boeger Winery

    In the three decades since Boeger Winery was founded, we have been committed to only one standar...

  • Miraflores Winery

    Nestled in a quiet canyon in the mountainous Sierra Foothills stand the breathtaking vineyards of...

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El Dorado on Snooth

  • Perry Creek Winery 'Altitude 2401 Legacy' Zinfandel NV


    Great Zin. Read More

    Wine review by RFlannery

  • Lava Cap Zinfandel El Dorado Reserve 2010


    Gently creamy oak frames dark balsam scented berry fruit on the nose. In the mouth this is rich and very focused with clear rusty red fruit and red cherry fruit supported by ripe tannins and good acids. The fruit pops on the finish, along with some gentle tannins and a finishing note of wood spice. 88pts Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Lava Cap Zinfandel El Dorado Reserve 2011


    Tight and earthy on the nose, musky even with aromas of capers, smoke, bouquet garni, and rich red fruit all coming together beautifully. Bright, faceted, and vaguely mineral in the mouth this displays cherryish fruit and a bit of herb on the palate. Really gorgeously balanced, this is refined, if a bit old school with its dry edge of austerity... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Lava Cap Zinfandel El Dorado Rocky Draw 2010


    Gingery, spicy, polleny and floral on the nose with very pretty, raspberry and cherry fruit. Cool, crisp, and approachable on the palate, this shows off herb streaked wild cherry fruit, leading to a mineral tinged finish. Smaller scaled than the 2010, this is also a bit rough and edgy still on the palate,. though fruity through the rustic yet a... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Easton Zinfandel California Shenandoah Valley Estate Bottled 2010


    Fairly oaky on the nose with lots of coffee accents to the black and plummy nose. Bright firm and well defined in the mouth, with bright acids supporting tart red berry fruit, framed by lovely peppery and almost gin like accents. Focused in the mouth with gorgeous fruit, fine edgy tannins and floral finish. 91pts Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

  • Serafina Cellars Sauvignon Blanc Sierra Foothills 2013


    No written review

    Wine review by anchca

  • Welcome, Carippee.You must venture to El dorado and Amador, I assume. Welcome to snooth.  I am in the Eastern-most bay area, and have visited up in your neck of the woods.  Have you checked out Clarksburg (Delta area)?  I have not yet, but have been hearing good things.  What types of wine do you enjoy? Read More

    Forum post in the topic Hello Snooth!

  • Found Snooth by accident.  My wife and I are from Northern California, ... Amador, Placer, Nevada, or El Dorado county wineries are really close for me, but I would drive to Napa if such a wine (good wine) were available.  Thanks for any help. Pau Read More

    Forum post in the topic Glad to be among friends

  • Texas Roussanne Tasted Blind Against California and France - Comes Out ... ... & Goat, Stonecrusher, El Dorado$32.99Third non-Texan THP = Texas High Plains  Texas wines took the top five slots with the lone French entry coming sixth. The two California entries occupied the bottom two positions in the rankings. The top wine is Arche’s 2012 from... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Texas Roussanne Tasted Blind...

  • Edmunds St. John Syrah Fenaughty 2011


    Deep smoke tinged jammy black fruit that is not sweet fills the glass along with framing notes of wild thyme, truffle, mossy rocks, and some lovely smoked chili accents. Supple in the mouth with fine acids keeping this fresh even though this packs in a lot of youthful fruit and has a touch of an inky consistency on the palate. With a lovely base... Read More

    Wine review by Gregory Dal Piaz

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