Monterey County Wine

 

The Monterey County AVA is part of the Central Coast region in California, below San Francisco. Franciscan friars first planted grapes in the area in the 1800s, though those crops of Mission grapes (a.k.a. the Chilean Pais grape) were left to rot as California came into its own from Mexico. It wasn’t till the 1960s that viticulturalist A.J. Winkler at U.C. Davis published a report classifying Monterey County as one of the most climatically suitable regions to grow quality wine grapes. 
 
Things boomed from there with established vineyards choosing Monterey for expansion as well as new, smaller boutique wineries. The northeastern portion of the region near Monterey Bay is the coolest, with conditions well suited to growing Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Moving further up the climate gets warmer, suitable for Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Zinfandel. Most of the growing areas benefit from conditions that allow for a long growing season, with long ripening of the grapes which Read more »

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Popular wines made in Monterey County under $20

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Varietals Produced in Monterey County View all

  • Pinot Noir

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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • Sauvignon Blanc

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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

Subregions of Monterey County

  • Carmel Valley

    The Carmel Valley appellation shares few of the gentle charms of the nearby seaside town of Carme...

  • Chalone

    enjoys one of the finest expressions of terroir anywhere. Distinctive Chardonnay and Pinot Noir ...

  • Santa Lucia Highlands

    The Santa Lucia Highlands AVA is a region within the Monterey district of California’s Central ...

Popular Wineries in Monterey County View all

  • Pisoni Vineyards & Winery

    Pisoni Vineyards is nestled in the rolling foothills of the Santa Lucia Mountain range, 25 mil...

  • Bernardus Winery & Vineyard

    The focus of Bernardus is to create wines that flatter the palate and stimulate the imagination. ...

  • Heller Estate Vineyard

    Overlooking the Cachagua region of Carmel Valley, ("Cachagua" is believed to be an Indian derivat...

  • Mon Lis

    We are proud to announce the release our 2005 Mon Lis Sleepy Hollow Vineyards Pinot Noir. When th...

  • Seawind Wines

    Seawind Wines is a journey of discovery. To discover grapes that ripen with optimum flavor, bala...

  • Viña Casa Marín

    Viña Casa Marín is a family-owned winery located in the San Antonio appellation, only 4 kms. from...

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Monterey County on Snooth

  • Agate & Elm Chardonnay 2013

    Snoothrank:

    A recent Tasting Room selection; Bright pale silver gold in the glass. Opens with Caramel, Lemon, and a bit of Bullion/Umami; then more Caramel, Honey, & Raisin; then Must/Musk and Honey with a bit of Neoprene - all very pleasant, though. Big and full in the mouth. Long finish of silky Toffee, Lemon, and Ripe Peach with Oak and Cola. Medium Acid... Read More

    Wine review by puhnner


  • DV, my father cut himself pretty well with a utility knife when I was a ... to ... a ... to Sierra Foothills, Monterey County, are options for anyone wanting to extend a stay.  As Emark said elsewhere, life is good.  Very goo Read More

    Forum post in the topic Time for an offline?


  • Copain Syrah Chalone Brosseau Vineyard 2007

    Snoothrank:

    I have found the Copain Syrah Brousseau Chalone to be a fabulous wine.I rate a 95. I loved the flavors,the aromas and the smooth relaxing drinkability.I will buy again for sure. Read More

    Wine review by teund5


  • Strato Monterey County Riesling 2013

    Snoothrank:

    A Tasting Room quarterly selection. Pale Gold in the Glass. Opens with Oak, Cinnamon and Baking Yeast; moves on to Vanilla and a sweet Bubblegum; then finishes with some Slate, Half & Half and more Vanilla. Long smooth finish with Oak and Vanilla along with Pear, Tropical Fruit, and Hibiscus.Had this alone, but would work well with Asian and oth... Read More

    Wine review by puhnner


  • Sterling Vineyards Pinot Noir Vintner's Collection 2014

    Snoothrank:

    full-bodied and delicious, one of my favorite pinot noir wines. Great price, and amazing flavors of cherries and plum. I love the acidity level, it is well-balanced and a delight Read More

    Wine review by katherinerosegary


  • Hahn Estates Gsm 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Fruity and a tad sweet with light acidity and light tannins. Smooooth. Read More

    Wine review by RandyFisher


  • @DVOGLER....."The great thing is we all have the freedom to think whatever ... a few days of tastings in Monterey county! Found what I thought was a great buy at Wrath. Pretty much all their Pinot's were very nice, not RR or Sonoma Coast, but very, very nice at only $35 a bottle at retail, and less an additional industry discount of 20% made it... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine you would not drink...


  • J Lohr Riverstone Chardonnay Arroyo Seco 2014

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by twilightblue02


  • Mythmaker Monterey County Pinot Noir Rose 2014

    Snoothrank:

    A Tasting Room Quarterly Selection; Pale Orange Red in the Glass. Opens with Prune & Cherry, then Honey, Cinnamon and Clove; These 3 carry over to the palate. Very light, with a medium long finish of Cherry, Candy, and baking Spice. Read More

    Wine review by puhnner


  • Wrath Pinot Noir Santa Lucia Highlands Boekenoogen Vineyard 2012

    Snoothrank:

    GREAT WINE FOR THANKSGIVINGCan't wait to enjoy with the family Read More

    Wine review by Dickie wines


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