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

  • 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...

  • 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...

  • 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

  • Charles Shaw Winery

    The Charles Shaw label is best known for producing wines of “extreme value.” These became popul...

  • Canyon Road Winery

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

  • Joseph Carr

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

  • Matchbook

    This is a duplicate winery page of Matchbook Wine Company: http://www.snooth.com/winery/matchbo...

  • 3 Blind Moose

    Truth be told, the moose aren’t blind. They just think it’s cool to share good wine with friends,...

  • Ca' Momi Wines

    "Ca’ Momi” wines are named for our family home in Northern Italy. The name also pays tribute to M...

Page 1 of 1,000

California on Snooth

  • 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


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  • 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


  • Apsara Syrah Carneros las Madres Vineyard 2011

    Snoothrank:

    Still an awesome wine. Beautiful, dark garnet color. Floral and fruity nose, Light fruit--red berry, stone fruit--on entry. Then, some mineral or stone. Tannin and acid are completely resolved, Long, lingering finish. This wine is probably now at peak performance. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


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  • Cosentino Winery Merlot Napa Valley 2002

    Snoothrank:

    Sadly, a victim of poor storage. Nose of seriously burnt caramel. Incredibly jammy red fruit on the front of this wine is pretty distracting. Then, there is a TON of unresolved tannin. I am having a good time drinking through a stash of estate wines, I will drink the entire bottle, and it won't make me gag, but I just have to wonder what co... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Epoch Estate Wines White 2018

    Snoothrank:

    47% Grenache Blanc, 42% Viognier, 11% Roussanne -- Beautiful, straw color in the glass. Viognier is immediately recognizable on the nose--honeysuckle, apricot. Again, Viognier fruitiness is apparent on the tongue--peach, table grapes, and the almost-gewurztraminer spiciness. However, this wine is loaded with acid--from the other grapes, I wou... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Enkidu Cabernet Sauvignon ANU Moon Mountain District 2012

    Snoothrank:

    "Dark" nose with some viny sensation. On the tip of the tongue I was surprised by flavors of bright red fruit--normally, I detect black fruit in CS. Lots of mineral and stone mid-palate. Plenty of stiff tannin. An unfortunate unbalance of acid, which I am sure, is why I described the fruit as "bright." I probably should have let this one re... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Apothic Cab 2018

    Snoothrank:

    Pours a rich purple hued, dark cherry color, and shows very good clarity. After meticulous swirling, there are many legs that form on the inside of the glass, that show signs of oiliness. The aromas are soft and subtle, with vanilla cherry being prominent, along with light fruity nuances, semi sweet oak with hints of light charring and mild gr... Read More

    Wine review by chriscage


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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, ...

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  • zinfandel

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  • Zinfandel

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  • 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?

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  • 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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