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

  • Merlot

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

  • 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...

  • 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

  • Tisdale Vineyards

    Since its inception, the hallmark of E. & J. Gallo Winery’s founders has been their unwavering co...

  • Charles Shaw Winery

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

  • Dumol Wine Company

    Our 25 acre biodynamically farmed Estate Vineyard is located on an undulating eastfacing slope of...

  • Cupcake Vineyards

    Our winery is located in Monterey County, California where warm days give way to cool nights a...

  • Sullivan Vineyards

    Arriving in the Napa Valley in 1972, Jim and JoAnna Sullivan purchased property in Rutherford, wh...

  • 3 Blind Moose

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

Page 1 of 1,000

California on Snooth

  • Kumbaya Red Wine Blend California 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Ruby red coloration with rusty purple hues around the rim when held against light and shows nice legs too! Semi clear transparency which suggests some decanting could be done to this one. Aromas of sweet vanilla, dark cherry, blackberry and chokecherry deepness....perhaps some mild peppery spice and oak dryness. Flavors are very fruit forward... Read More

    Wine review by chriscage


  • 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


  • Shafer Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1999

    Snoothrank:

    Very beautiful, purple in the glass. Typical CS nose of dark fruit. Indeed dark fruit on the tip of the tongue--blackberry, currant, prune--but, also nice minerality. It's been years since I've seen anybody call out pencil lead in their tasting notes, but if this were 2005, that that's the way it would have been described. Tannin and acid ha... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


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  • Joseph Carr Napa Valley Merlot 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Violet color in the glass Moderately fruity/floral nose. Quite fruity on the tip of the tongue--blueberry seems to lead. The initial taste is a bit frightening, but as the wine passes back some good things happen. There is some minerality and some surprising spiciness. Then, some heft. I am getting some, for Merlot, pretty good tannin. So... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Ceritas Charles Heintz Vineyard Chardonnay 2017

    Snoothrank:

    A very enjoyable wine. Lots of upfront fruit--lime and grapefruit on the citrus side, pineapple, kiwi and a suggestion, but only a suggestion, of banana. Terrific acid fills the mouth making this a very lively, bright wine, Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Rosenthal Merlot Malibu-Newton Canyon Malibu Estate Devon Vineyard 2009

    Snoothrank:

    Interesting color that seems to be closer to prune than plum. Fairly fruity nose. Serious red fruit on the tip of the tongue. More than I normally appreciate. Not much complexity as the wine moves back. A bit of a funky aftertaste -- sulfur, I assume. I can now check off Malibu from the AVAs that I have tasted. I don't feel that for $15 I w... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • p { margin-bottom: 0.25cm; line-height: 120%; }  Just Keto Diet South ... ... specialist situated in California.http://fitnessproductcenter.com/just-keto-south-africa/ &nbs Read More

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  • Ridge Geyserville 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Three years after my previous notes on this wine, I'm still liking it. As noted before, a light hit of red fruit--raspberry--but with no sweetness. Acid is apparent. As previously reported, tannin is somewhat sedate. I'm still calling this a medium-bodied wine, but contrary to my previous assessment, I am of the impression that more years of ... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


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  • Having a natural product for skin care is the best option for our skin. That's why we're writing this Le Salle Cream review here to help everyone know about this decent. Thanks to these vitamins, this cream helps reduce wrinkles and fine lines. It is one of those products that can improve the skin of the interior Blog: http://lesallecream.striki...

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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?

    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.

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