California can be considered the mother country of viticulture in the United States describe. It also rightly bears the beautiful epithet "Wine State" because wine is an important economic factor here. The Spanish sold the Spanish variety in the 16th century Listán Prieto in Mexico one that was called Misión here and later in California Mission. In 1769 the Franciscan monk had Junipero Serra (1713-1784) allegedly planted the first vineyard with this vine when the “San Diego” mission in California was founded (according to a newer source, only ten years later). There were no major difficulties here as on the east coast of the Atlantic, because the dry climate prevented fungal diseases and the vines prospered splendidly. The wines were then made in a rather primitive way; a contemporary report provides clear information: a cow skin filled with mashed grapes hung between two trees ( wineskin ) in which the fermentation took place. At the bottom was a stopper that you simply pulled out to fill a mug of wine.
Mostly, the Mission wine was distilled into schnapps and the Spriten of the remaining wine used. Around the year 1833 a Frenchman with the symbolic name Jean-Louis planted Vignes (1780-1862) vines imported from Europe for the first time near Los Angeles. General Mariano Vallejo (1808-1890) was the last Mexican governor of California, who first became independent in 1846 and became the 31st US state four years later in 1850. He had in Sonoma a winery and was the first large-scale winegrower. In 1849, gold fever broke out in California and wine broke out Zinfandel became the favorite drink of the gold miners.
The big breakthrough came from Hungary's Agoston Haraszthy (1812-1869) initiated from 1860, the winery in Sonoma Buena Vista Winery founded and introduced hundreds of European grape varieties. In the immediate vicinity, the German Jacob Gundlach founded a winery that was named 1973 Gundlach-Bundschu was reactivated. Another pioneer was Charles from Prussia jug (1825-1892) who died in St. Helena in Napa Valley in 1861 Charles Krug Winery founded and trained young winemakers. Born in France Paul Masson (1859-1940) became famous with his sparkling wine in 1892 and was called the "Champagne King of California". By the end of the 19th century, a diverse wine culture with high quality wines from imported European Vinifera varieties developed.
Around 1880 the University of California founded a wine research center in Berkeley, which later became Davis. A million hectoliters of wine were produced in 1890. The Phylloxera disaster from 1880 destroyed many vineyards, but they were rebuilt. But the prohibition (1920-1933) brought the total decline of American wine culture. A revolution only began in the 1950s. It started with small wineries that experimented with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, and French oak barrels. The pioneers who were largely responsible for the recovery were Robert Mondavi (1913-2008), who founded his first winery in Oakville in the Napa Valley in 1966, and Joe Heitz (1919-2000). Both were created by the famous enologist André Tchelistcheff (1901-1994) supported. The high quality of California wines was also confirmed by an already legendary wine tasting ( Paris Wine Tasting ) approved.
California is divided into five major winegrowing regions, but they are by no means congruent with the climate regions listed below. The regions are divided into political counties (provinces) with several each AVA areas are divided. But these can also go beyond the political county boundaries, as is the case with Wild Horse Valley (Counties Napa and Solano) and Los Carneros (Counties Napa and Sonoma):
Central Coast : The region covers around 25,000 hectares of vineyards. It forms a 560 km long strip from the north south of San Francisco Bay to Los Angeles in the south.
Central Valley (Delta &...