California Wine Regions
Home to Napa Valley. First planted vines date back to the 1800s. Today the region boasts some of the most expensive viticulture land in California and produces many of California's great Cabernet Sauvignons. Situated 50 miles inland, the climate is predominantly Mediterranean, which is one of the essential elements needed to ripen most grape varieties to perfection. There is a remarkable array of soils in Napa Valley. This broad classification of distinctive soil types provide first class influences on the sensory characteristics of Napa Valley's wine.
Equally important is Sonoma County, which also shares the North Coast region. There are 13 uniquely different appellations within Sonoma County, which is generally regarded as a viticultural Eden.
North Central Coast
Within the world-class designation of Monterey County, this region boasts seven AVA's that have been identified as one-of-a-kind wine growing districts. Monterey's world-class wines rely on picture-perfect elements: warm sun, cool fog and ancient soils, all essential components to the winegrower's art. Initially regarded as a producer of elegant Chardonnay wines, the area has since established itself a great reputation for being capable of producing all the classical varietal wines. Due to the cool growing season, the fall harvest typically begins two weeks later than other regions. This slowly matured fruit offers intense varietal flavors and an ideal sugar acid balance. These concentrated, true varietal flavors are the hallmark of Monterey County's quality wines.
The Sierra Foothill wine region has for many years been California's best kept wine secret -- but no longer! The region is becoming more well-known around the world every year. Thousands of visitors explore the small and distinctive wineries of the Western Sierra Foothills that specialize in full-bodied reds and distinctive white wines including Rhone-style varietials.
The agricultural splendor of California culminates in the vineyards of the Central Valley. Not only will you find some wonderful wineries dotting the beauty of the countryside, this area offers up a rich history and culture that you can almost taste in some of the award-winning wines produced in this region.
South Central Coast
As much as the North Central Coast, the South Central Coast is a premium wine producer. California's longest grape growing season unfolds in the fog and wind-swept Santa Maria Valley appellation of Santa Barbara County. The unusually long hang-time is the Pacific's doing. Cool maritime breezes pour into this appellation with a relentlessness matched only by the desire of each individual cluster to ripen to full maturity. Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs, two varietals especially amenable to the ocean's influence, are the flagship wines of this region.
Paso Robles - Boasting the warmest climate on the Central Coast, "Paso" as the locals call it, is home to our BIG reds: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah and Zinfandel to name a few.
The Temecula wine region enjoys misty morning fog leading to warm but temperate days that provide a long and stable growing season. Similar in many ways to the Central Coast, Temecula wineries produce excellent Chardonnay, Merlot and Sauvignon Blanc and more recently Viognier, Syrah and Pinot Gris. Temecula possesses a unique micro-climate creating an early growing season from March through September. The harvest season is rarely afflicted by rains, which contributes both to the flavor and consistency of Temecula wines. Cool air flowing inland moderates the daytime temperatures and helps to create a pattern of warm, sunny days and cool nights, which are ideal conditions for excellent wines.