Napa/Sonoma Counties Wine

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Napa and Sonoma counties in the North Coast of California are two of the most famous centers of wine in the United States. Wine production in both regions began in the 1800s when European settlers transplanted vines from the homeland. Their stories are similar, with various periods of boom and bust since then, most notably during the Prohibition. From the 1960s on, these regions have seen enormous growth, with diverse winemaking styles from traditional to modern, large scale commercial and small scale boutique, popular jug wines and bank-breaking cult wines, and the rise in significance of organic/sustainable practices. 
 
Though there is a large range in microclimates and topography spread between these regions, one can categorically state that Napa is typically warmer than Sonoma. Napa has hot and dry summers with cool winters. The Pacific Ocean has more of a cooling effect on Sonoma, with foggy valleys toward the coast, getting hotter and drier moving further inland. 

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Popular wines made in Napa/Sonoma Counties under $20

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Varietals Produced in Napa/Sonoma Counties View all

  • 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...

  • Merlot

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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Sauvignon Blanc

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

Subregions of Napa/Sonoma Counties

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Napa/Sonoma Counties on Snooth

  • Bedrock Wine Co. T 'n' S Blocks Hudson Vyd. South Syrah 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Candied fruit--blackberry, plum, citrus (lime) peel. However, the "canddied" descriptor is sufficiently offset by lively acid. A medium-bodied wine.Somewhat lean. Solid wine Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Myriad Whole Cluster las Madres Vineyard Syrah 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Delightful nose of violets and berries. Quite subdued berry--blueberry, blackberry--fruit on entry. Not as tart as my previous review in 2018. On the surface this doesn't seem like a particularly sophisticated wine, but surface observations may be faulty. Mid-to-rear palate I am getting retro-nasal sensations that mimic the nose and seem like... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Apsara Syrah Carneros las Madres Vineyard 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Terrific berry--blueberry, blackberry--and stone fruit--black plum--on the introduction to the mouth, Nice tartness around the edges of the tongue. Some minerality. Some salinity. Fairly full=bodied. Terrific wine. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Apsara Syrah las Madres Vineyard Whole Cluster 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Dark plum color. "Brooding" nose of dark fruit. On the tongue, again, dark fruit, but of dried fruit without the sweetness, Savory mid-palate. Some good acid and some very notieceable tannin. An outstanding full-bodied wine. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Apsara Syrah las Madres Vineyard Whole Cluster 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Very similar, I see, to my previous report. Pretty--more blue than red--purple color in the glass. Bright red fruit--cranberry, plum--on the tip of the tongue. Some minerality, mid-palate. Very sedate tannin. Some "spritziness" on the tongue which I would attribute to acid. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Apsara Syrah Carneros las Madres Vineyard 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Very nice introduction of red fruit--strawberry, cherry, red plum. Reasonable acid, but certainly nothing that would bother most. Some, mid-palate savoriness. Quite light on tannin. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Mending Wall Brown Ranch Carneros Chardonnay 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Whoa. Seriously oaked. Lots of vanilla, caramel. Some tropical fruit. Not an awful wine, but if you are a White Burgundy fan, I'd be hard pressed to understand why you would like this. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Charles Shaw Cabernet Sauvignon California 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Worth every... of two dollars! Read More

    Wine review by ApelsecS


  • Bedrock Hudson Vineyard South T'N'S-blocks Syrah 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Dark purple in the glass. Earthy, maybe a "forest floor" nose. I always get fruit on the tip of the tongue and, sure enough, lite red fruit--cherry, suggestion of strawberry, stone fruit. Then the earthiness happens, mid-palate. Nice tart acid. I could use a bit more backbone from tannin, but I'm still OK with this wine. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Apsara Syrah las Madres Vineyard Whole Cluster 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Nice gentle introduction of red fruits. Minerality pops up mid-palate. Firm, but, certainly, not obtrusive tannin. Good balance. Medium-bodied. A very good wine that is not priced in the stratosphere. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


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