Russian River Valley Wine

The Russian River Valley is the most southerly AVA within Northern Sonoma. It is named for the influx of Russian immigrants who, between 1812 and 1841, settled along the Sonoma coast, establishing agricultural businesses including the planting of wine grapes. Beginning at Fort Ross they moved up to Sebastopol, Graton and Freestone, eventually settling in what would become Russian River Valley.

Most of the Russian settlers abandoned the area by 1841, but other settlers had already migrated there and continued to support viticultural plantings. By the 1870s, the wine industry began to take hold and companies such as the Santa Rosa Wine Company, Martini and Prati, Korbel Cellars and Foppiano established longstanding wineries. 
 
The Prohibition was a devastating blow to the region, but there were some survival techniques employed by certain wineries to get around the problem. The Alicante-Bouchet grape from Europe, know for its unique teinturier (naturally dark, heavily pigmented juice without Read more »

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Popular wines made in Russian River Valley under $20

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Varietals Produced in Russian River Valley View all

  • 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...

  • 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...

  • Chardonnay

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

  • Pinot Noir

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

Subregions of Russian River Valley

  • Green Valley

      The Green Valley AVA is in the west corner of the Russian River Valley in Sonoma, in Calif...

Popular Wineries in Russian River Valley View all

  • Holdredge Wines

    Holdredge Wines is a small, family owned and operated winery in the Russian River Valley of Heald...

  • Walter Hansel Winery

    Walter Hansel Winery is located in Sonoma County at the southern tip of the Russian River Valley ...

  • Davis Family Vineyards

    Davis Family Vineyards is located on a ridge top in the center of California’s renowned Russian R...

  • Tremani Russian River Valley Wines

    Tremani Vineyards is a partnership formed in 1997 by the Hansen family – sisters, Barbara and Dia...

  • C. Donatiello Winery

    A visit to our estate is a retreat from the mundane, a respite of beauty, harmony, and excellence...

  • Rutz Cellars

    2004 Rutz Cellars Dutton Ranch Russian River Valley Pinot Noir ($45) Owner Keith Rutz seeks outst...

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Russian River Valley on Snooth

  • EM - Good to hear there is a good Tannat out there.  We have a few in our ... ... I think the St. Francis Russian River Valley bottle was the best, but I don't remember all of us agreeing on one bottle being the best.  Sandra and I brought the Medlock Ames (two of them, as one was a prize bottle) and the Garrison Creek cabs.  The event on Fac... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines - Post Pictures...


  • Foppiano Vineyards Estate Bottled Petite Sirah Russian River Valley 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Better than Silver Oak. For 85%less. Cant beat it!!!!!! Read More

    Wine review by PapaJoe09


  • Acorn Alegria Vineyards Heritage Vines Zinfandel Russian River Valley 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Candied raspberry and strawberry aromas with a concentrated cherry preserve note and mixed berry frosting. Dry and earthy but still with loads of fruit, this is well made with creamy palate and textured tannins coming through towards the finish of cranberry and clove. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Rodney Strong Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Spicy cinnamon and vanilla bean aromas with chocolate cherry and mineral earth. Loads of dark berry flavors with cherry, fizzy cola and fresh spice - berry approachable and pleasant with a creamy texture to the finish and assertive but gentle tannins. Very nice. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Hook and Ladder Tillerman Red Blend 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Marlowes


  • Rodney Strong Rose of Pinot Noir Russian River Valley 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Pleasant watermelon and cherry aromas are juicy and inviting. This has a fresh, tingling acidity and a zesty spice on the palate. Its playful and clean with excellent fruit notes of cranberry, cherry and strawberry leading up to a bit of an earthy finish. 90 points Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • J Vineyards Brut Rose NV

    Snoothrank:

    It brings pleasantly rustic, smoky strawberry and sour cherry aromas with a creamy vanilla note and light toast. The palate is full bodied, zesty and decadent with cherry, strawberry and ripe watermelon flavors, a buoyant acidity and lively texture with a bit of grapefruit zest and vanilla frosting on the finish adding some depth. 92 points Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Merry Edwards Russian River Valley Pinot Noir 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Darker than many popular PNs, these days. Light hit of plum flavors on entry. Very nice. A bit of bitterness towards the rear of the tongue/palate. My suspicion that it is tannin. This is not a wine with puckery tanninno surprise therebut I cant image where that sensation comes from. Meanwhile the time it takes me to write this is longer t... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Folie a Deux Chardonnay Russian River Valley 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Ripe and lightly oaked. Pleasant wine. Read More

    Wine review by RandyFisher


  • Liking that Liquid Farm Roger. I picked up a Golden Slope at Bottle Barn a ... ... California, Sonoma County, Russian River Valley (8/6/2017)On the big, buttery and rich end of the spectrum. Lots of wood on this, detracted from the rest of the bottle.2014 Hirsch Vineyards Pinot Noir San Andreas Fault - USA, California, Sonoma County, Sonoma Co... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


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