Mendocino County Wine

 

Mendocino County AVA is a large and climatically diverse region within the North Coast region of California. Wine-making began here in the 1850s when failed gold prospectors planted vineyards. Italian immigrants arrived soon after and expanded plantings into the hillsides. Despite the expansion of the wine industry at this time, Mendocino County wines remained fairly obscure and isolated, though more and more vineyards were being planted for local consumption. But this isolation worked in the region’s favor, as many of the vines were spared from the Phylloxera epidemic and the rest could be salvaged by regrafting as hybrid European-American rootstock, which was immune to the dreaded louse. 
 
However, like most of the California wine industry, Mendocino County suffered near collapse during the Prohibition from 1921 - 1933. The region did not recover until the 1960s when the Parducci and Fetzer family estates rose to prominence. Other wineries followed their example. Today Read more »

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Popular wines made in Mendocino County under $20

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Varietals Produced in Mendocino County View all

  • Merlot

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

  • 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...

  • Zinfandel

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

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • 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 Mendocino County

  • Anderson Valley

    Anderson Valley AVA is located within Mendocino County in the North Coast region of California....

  • Yorkville Highlands

    Flanking both sides of Route 128 connecting Sonoma’s Alexander Valley with Mendocino's Anderson ...

  • Mendocino Ridge

    "Islands in the Sky"™, as most locals call it, is a more romantic and appropriate name for ...

  • Redwood Valley

    The Redwood Valley AVA is a subregion of Mendocino in California’s North Coast. The region bene...

Popular Wineries in Mendocino County View all

  • Handley Cellars

    Our estate vineyard experiences cool foggy nights and bright sunny days, the perfect climate f...

  • Jim Ball Vineyards

    The idea for Jim Ball Vineyards began over 27 years ago. Traveling the West Coast for the first t...

  • Golden Cellars

    Golden Vineyards is the gorgeous byproduct of two individuals who, when spliced together, make fo...

  • Silversmith Vineyards

    Tom Johnson Managing Partner A member of the fourth generation of his family to farm in Mendocin...

  • Claudia Springs Winery

    Claudia Springs Winery was founded in 1989 by Bob and Claudia Klindt in the picturesque Anderson ...

  • Londer Vineyards

    We are located approximately 120 miles north of San Francisco, in the southwestern corner of Cali...

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Mendocino County on Snooth

  • Theopolis Vineyards Pinot Noir Yorkville Highlands 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Fairly light-bodied easy-to-drink wine. Red cherry up front. Lively acid. Stoniness farther back under the palate. I was hoping for a more muscular wine, a la the Theopolis PS, but this is more of the current trend with California highly restrained Pinot Noirs. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Theopolis Vineyards Pinot Noir Anderson Valley 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Unusual, almost prune color. Somewhat cloudy in the glass, and definitely appears to be somewhat light-bodied. Moderately fruity nose, Lots of red cherry on the tip of the tongue. Also some surprising astringency--that may be from acid. Very observable mineral things under the rear palate, In contrast to my visual prediction, while this is ... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Halcon Roussanne Yorkville Highlands 2018

    Snoothrank:

    A very crisp wine. Lemon pith that I quickly detect tells you that there is acidic crispness. I also am getting a tropical flavor--kiwi. Some stoniness. Very pleasant herbal aftertaste. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Myriad Syrah Halcon Vineyard Yorkville Highlands 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Nice unobtrusive introduction of black raspberry or black cherry. Some salinity, mid-palate. Quite muted tannin. Very pleasant, mid-length aftertaste with, interestingly, a hint of licorice. A very restrained, although, altogether enjoyable wine. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Halcon Pinot Noir Oppenlander Vineyard 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Prettty translucent garnet color. Lots of upfront red berry fruit--raspberry, strawberry, red plum. You might guess there is a fair amount of acid, here, that gives the wine a lot of liveliness. An excellent sign. An enjoyable. albeit, not, in any way, challenging wine. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Dirty & Rowdy Mendocino County Chenin Blanc 2018

    Snoothrank:

    More of a fruity nose on this one. On the tongue, sure enough, a blast of lemon, pineapple. and, then, honeydew melon. As the wine moves back there are mineral sensations, Some serious acid tartness may put off some, but I find it gives the wine impressive freshness. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Halcon Alturas Yorkville Highlands 2015

    Snoothrank:

    This is the second of three bottles that I bought, I do remember the first one that I opened a couple years ago. I did not write any notes, but I remember it as an enjoyable wine--which is, I'm sure, the most negative evaluation I have ever given to an Alturas. This one opens with a nice, unobtrusive introduction of blackberry. Very nice aci... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • We need to try those DV!!Tonitght it's Skylark 2013 Grenache, Mendocino County. Lots of cork problems and I wrote to them about it. They acknowledged the issue and said they had a problem in 2013 and dumped their cork supplier. They also offered to make the wines good, but they're not big producers and I wasn't going to push it, although I appre... Read More

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


  • Ceritas Pinot Noir Hacienda Secoya Vineyard 2012

    Snoothrank:

    Interesting wine. I see from previous notes that I had raved about this wine. This bottle, though, does not match that opinion. A very pretty bright floral nose. On the tip of the tongue, though, when I normally get fruit from just about any wine, I get no fruit, here. I get stoniness, I get savory and I get, maybe, salinity. I do get some... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Halcon Wentzel Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015

    Snoothrank:

    A lot of red berry fruit on entry. Then, some very surprising, and pleasant, spiciness. Surprising, to me, tannin (for a PN). Fairly light bodied, although with an aftertaste that does linger. A very pleasant and complex wine. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


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