Californian Wine

Viticulture in California began in the 1700s as Spanish missionaries worked their way north from the South American colonies. Grapes (of the Mission, a.k.a. Pais, variety) were originally planted with the intention of producing ceremonial wine and the first wineries were established for the cultivation of Mission grapes. From these beginnings, Parisian oenologist Jean Louis Vignes is credited with being the first person to import European vines for general consumption to Los Angeles in 1833. 

 
This was followed in the 1850’s with Hungarian businessman  Agoston Haraszthy, who came to California after establishing businesses in Wisconsin. Finding the prevalent Mission grape to be of inferior quality, he began to select high quality vines from Europe and established vineyards in Crystal Springs outside San Francisco with the help of a government viticulture grant. Though found culpable for some shady business practices outside the wine industry, he was able to relocate his vines Read more »

Mentor for Californian Wines

Eric Guido

Food and Wine Writer for Snooth Media, Chef, Musician, Poet, Wine Lover, and Workaholic. Owner, Chef and Writer for The V.I.P. Table.

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Popular wines made in California under $20

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Varietals Produced in California View all

  • Zinfandel

    Parentage of the grape: Crljenak to Austria to America. In the 1970s, claims surfaced that the Italian Primitivo is l...

  • Merlot

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

  • 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...

  • 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...

Subregions of California

  • Amador County

      Amador County, in the Sierra Foothills district of California, is named for mid-1840s ranc...

  • Central Coast

      Central Coast is a vast AVA that spans between Santa Barbara County in the south to the Sa...

  • Lake County

    Lake County is an emerging wine region within California’s North Coast, north of Napa. Clear La...

  • Mendocino County

      Mendocino County AVA is a large and climatically diverse region within the North Coast reg...

  • Monterey County

      The Monterey County AVA is part of the Central Coast region in California, below San Franc...

  • Napa County

    There is some debate over how this famous wine region got its name. Spanish settlers named the ...

  • North Coast

      The North Coast AVA is a region that spans eight counties and dozens of prestigious subreg...

  • San Francisco Bay

    AVA is one of California’s ‘Mega’ appellations. This vast AVA, covering over 1.5 million acres, ...

  • San Luis Obispo County

      San Luis Obispo is part of the larger wine Central Coast region of California, located at ...

  • Santa Barbara County

    The Santa Barbara County AVA lies within the Central Coast territory of California. Like much o...

  • Santa Cruz Mountains

      The Santa Cruz Mountains AVA is a vast region within San Francisco Bay in California’s Cen...

  • Calaveras

    is a picturesque and remote area in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Popular with o...

  • Contra Costa

    The Contra Costa County AVA is located within the San Francisco Bay region of California’s Cent...

  • El Dorado County

    The spectacular Sierra Nevada range offers a fitting backdrop to the vineyards of El Dorado Count...

Popular Wineries in California View all

  • Sycamore Lane Cellars

    Sycamore Lane is a private label brand produced by Trinchero Family Estates in Napa Valley, Cal...

  • Canyon Road Winery

    Inspired by the scenic roads that wander through California’s stunning wine country, Rafael Jofre...

  • Glass Mountain

    It has been more than hundred years since California wine pioneer Jean Laurent quarried stone fro...

  • Livingston Cellars

    Since 1984 and 17 years, the de facto estate wine of Livingston Moffett winery has been bottled ...

  • Rex Goliath

    At age 70, I have had at least 50 yrs. of a glass of wine after my evening meals. Just recently,...

  • Joseph Carr

    Joseph Carr wines are produced at Larson Family Vineyards in Carneros, bordering both Napa and So...

Page 1 of 1,000

California on Snooth

  • Solaris Merlot Napa Valley Special Release 2001

    Snoothrank:

    Slightly oxidized. Years of unfortunate storage. On the other hand, there is still some lively red fruit in this one. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Quivet Cellars Kenefick Ranch Syrah 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Lots of blackberry on the tip of the tongue. Mellows to tartness and some mineral things mid-palate. An unfortunate sourness on the very rear palate. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Sterling Diamond Mountain Ranch Cabernet Sauvignon 2000

    Snoothrank:

    Inoffensive, but, obviously, over the hill. Very little of the black fruit that I normally see in CS. Still noticeable tannin. Acid is, pretty much, gone. I bought nine of these for $5/bottle at an estate sale. I have paid a lot more for wines that were not as good as this. I will enjoy my remaining bottles, but not with any special meals. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • I can imagine the hidden powers of that Alexander Valley wine.  Nice ... ... than can be found in, say, California (when we speak of the better garagiste or boutique operations located in the Bear Flag State).  In speaking of this, I mean wines under 500 dollars US.  Anything more than that sum and the pale is breached.Nope.  Bordeaux is no cr... Read More

    Forum post in the topic What's your Choice of Wine...


  • Rombauer Zinfandel California 2011

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by akitiger


  • Hahn Cabernet Sauvignon California 2015

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by mikzn


  • Stave & Steel Bourbon Barrel Aged Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Pours a slightly murky rusty red color...slight froth after some swirling with little in terms of legs. Aromas of vanilla oak, bourbon, juicy berries and a lingering, slightly smoky finish on the nostrils. Flavors are much of a typical cabernet, but with added charred oak character....some sweet vanilla charm. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, smoo... Read More

    Wine review by chriscage


  • .../california-vs-oregonhttps://liveonvs.com/pittsburgh-vs-dukehttps://liveonvs.com/liberty-vs-new-mexico-statehttps://liveonvs.com/utsa-vs-utephttps://liveonvs.com/oregon-state-vs-uclahttps://liveonvs.com/san-diego-state-vs-colorado-statehttps://liveonvs.com/washington-vs-stanfordhttps://liveonvs.com/boise-state-vs-unl Read More

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  • Noble Vines 667 Pinot Noir 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Nice clarity to this muted rusty red vino....shows many legs as well after a good swirl. Aromas of oaked tannins, fresh leathery Earth, muted strawberry and cherry, and a strong whiff of alcohol. Flavors follow suit, with ripe strawberry, muted cranberry tartness, cherry and even a hint of chocolate covered blueberry. The mouthfeel is light i... Read More

    Wine review by chriscage


  • Simi Winery Chardonnay 2016

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by Jerry Brenner


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  • Beyond the Vine (www.4beyondthevine.com) has completed it’s first in a series of blind tasting to find the best Syrah producer in Santa Clara County. The first flight was a good representation of 12 Syrah from south Santa Clara County and one inexpensive mystery bottle. Entries were as follows; ’07 Clos La Chance, ’07 Creek View, ’07 Fernwood, ...

    Comment by 921334greg112558 921334 greg112558


  • zinfandel

    Comment by 579496Didu 579496 Didu


  • Zinfandel

    Comment by 579496Didu 579496 Didu


  • Is there a winery in or near Pleasanton, CA that has a good merlot? My daughter is there working and I wanted her to pick me up some local wine.

    Comment by 541781Pam Burns 541781 Pam Burns


  • Does anyone have any comments about Peay Wines?

    Comment by 512854hawks8999 512854 hawks8999


  • Has anyone ever heard of "Kitchen Sink" vineyards? I was given a bottle of KITCHEN SINK red........it was a mixture of cabernet, petite Sirah, merlot, zinfandel. It was actually a nice surprise in taste. I just don't know where to get it......is it expensive or inexpensive? Would like an opinion from someone.

    Comment by 156349shari duff 156349 shari duff


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    Page modification by 33093Chris Carpita 33093 Chris Carpita


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