Mendocino Wine

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The Mendocino AVA lies within the Mendocino County region in the North Coast territory of California. It is located well inland of the Pacific Coast, but still benefits from its cooling effects. It’s a broad region with many subregions, with a vast range of styles. Cooler climate districts tend to grow Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc while warmer climes go for Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Zinfandel. But each subregion has its own character:

-Cole Ranch: less rainfall, warmer days, but high elevation and cool nights to retain acidity in the grapes.
-McDowell Valley: known for Rhone varietals Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, Cinsault, Marsanne and Viognier.
-Potter Valley: high humidity creates perfect growing conditions for botrytis late harvest dessert wines from Semillon and Riesling as well as dry wines. 
-Redwood Valley:  soil types well suited for reds, especially Rhone and Italian varietals. 
-Yorkville Highlands: long growing season and microclimates Read more »

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Popular wines made in Mendocino under $20

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Varietals Produced in Mendocino View all

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

  • Sauvignon Blanc

    Sauvignon Blanc is widely grown in California -- at over 15,000 acres, it’s now the third most planted variety -- and...

  • 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...

  • Chardonnay

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

Subregions of Mendocino

Popular Wineries in Mendocino View all

  • Bonterra Vineyards

    We've been farming organically since 1987. Because it's our belief that organic grapes make bette...

  • Pacific Star Winery

    The West Coast's only ocean-side winery was bonded in 1988 by winemaker-proprietor Sally Ottoson,...

  • Parducci Wine Cellars

    Parducci Wine Cellars makes environment-friendly choices because they are the right ones. Righ...

  • Bliss Vineyards

    In the late 1930s Irv Bliss was drawn to Mendocino County by its beautiful rolling hills and un...

  • Edmeades Winery

    The first row of vines were barely in the ground when the neighbors began lining up to lean on th...

  • Seabiscuit Ranch

    The story of Seabiscuit lives on in the heart of America. Everyone loves the tale of this stocky,...

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Mendocino on Snooth

  • Rhys Alesia Chardonnay Alder Springs Vineyard 2012


    Something of a floral noseorange blossom. Light on the tonguesome citrus hints, some stone fruittart peach. As the wine moves back I can detect a light touch on the oak. Nice acid refreshness. Not a big California Chardonnay (thankfully), but not as taut as many white Burgundies. Read More

    Wine review by EMark

  • Fun evening tonight with friends, some old some new, great food and some ... ... for a Cab. Pinot from Mendocino? I've had Zinfandel from Perli vineyard under the Edmeades label but Pinot? This was a touch big and ripe. Could have used a cool climate touch. Not bad but just not un the league of the next two.  Now we're talkin', this Fourrier n... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Another sucky evening of...

  • Testa Vineyards Carignane 2010


    Very pleasant Carignane from Testa in Mendocino. There's crushed black cherry and a hit alcohol on the nose (even though it's only 13.7% abv). More black cherry on the tongue along with candied fig, the slightest hint of black licorice, lively acidity, medium fine tannins and a medium finish. Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0

  • Navarro Vineyards Anderson Valley Mendocino Muscat Blanc 2012


    Real nice Mendocino muscat blanc. Fresh lemon citrus on the nose and creamy tangerine and apricot on the palate. Just a slight bit of sweetness on the front end that coats the tongue followed quickly by a nice bite of acidity and a medium length finish. Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0

  • Paul Dolan Vineyards Deep Red 2012


    No written review

    Wine review by CageyT

  • Navarro Gewürztraminer Anderson Valley Dry 2012


    Nice Mendocino gewurz from long time producer Navarro. Good blast of apricot on the nose. More dried apricot and ripe peach up front followed by a touch of honey and medium acidity. Read More

    Wine review by vin0vin0

  • Used to be a pretty well regarded "competition."  Both the paper ... ... past the turn-off for Mendocin Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine Competition 2015

  • "*I say mercifully because I am thrilled to live in a state which has a ... a ... past the turn-off for Mendocino." When I was living (or have visited since then) in CA, I've always known how to get to a place within 30mins (often far less) of wherever I was where I could do a 360 and see no people at all. Good luck with that where I am now.A... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine Competition 2015

  • Redwood Creek 08 Cabernet Sauvignon California Cabernet Sauvignon New World 2009


    No written review

    Wine review by marymarchell

  • WRT to the Riesling taste off, the three of us (wife, father-in-law, self) only ... I found out is in northern Mendocino, so at least it has that going for it. I'll post some tasting notes in the next couple of day Read More

    Forum post in the topic Thursday (possibly into and...

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