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U.S. wine producing regions
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American wine has been produced for over 300 years. Today, wine production is performed in all fifty states, with California leading the way in wine production followed by Washington State, Oregon and New York. The United States is the fourth largest wine producing country in the world after France, Italy, and Spain. The production in the U.S. State of California alone is more than double of the production of the entire country of Australia.
The United States is home to several native species of grape, including Vitis labrusca, Vitis riparia, Vitis rotundifolia, Vitis vulpina, and Vitis amurensis, but it was the introduction of the European Vitis vinifera by European settlers that led to the growth of the wine making industry. With more than 1,100,000 acres under vine, the United States is the fifth most planted country in the world after France, Italy, Spain and Turkey.

There are nearly 3,000 commercial vineyards in the United States with at least one winery in all 50 States.

West Coast

The majority of American wine production occurs in the states of California, Washington and Oregon. California wine is wine made in the U.S. state of California. Nearly three-quarters the size of France, California accounts for nearly 90 percent of entire American wine production. The production in California alone is one third larger than that of Australia. If California were a separate country, it would be the world's fourth-largest wine producer. California wines.

California has over 427,000 acres planted under vines mostly located in a stretch of land covering over 700 miles from Mendocino County to the southwestern tip of Riverside County. There are over 107 American Viticultural Areas (AVAs), including the well known Napa, Russian River Valley, Rutherford and Sonoma Valley AVAs. The Central Valley is California's largest wine region stretching for 300 miles from the Sacramento Valley south to the San Joaquin Valley. This one region produces nearly 75% of all California wine grapes and includes many of California's bulk, box and jug wine producers like Gallo, Franzia and Bronco Wine Company.
  • North Coast - Includes most of North Coast, California, north of San Francisco Bay. The large North Coast AVA covers most of the region. Notable wine regions include Napa Valley and Sonoma County and the smaller sub AVAs within them. Mendocino and Lake County are also part of this region.

  • Central Coast - Includes most of the Central Coast of California and the area south and west of San Francisco Bay down to Santa Barbara County. The large Central Coast AVA covers the region. Notable wine regions in this area include Santa Clara Valley AVA, Santa Cruz Mountains AVA, San Lucas AVA, Paso Robles AVA, Santa Maria Valley AVA, Santa Ynez Valley and Livermore Valley AVA.

  • South Coast - Includes portion of Southern California, namely the coastal regions south of Los Angeles down to the border with Mexico. Notable wine regions in this area include Temecula Valley AVA, Antelope Valley/Leona Valley AVA, San Pasqual Valley AVA and Ramona Valley AVA.

  • Central Valley - Includes California's Central Valley and the Sierra Foothills AVA. Notable wine regions in this area include the Lodi AVA.
Washington wine is wine produced from grape varieties grown in the U.S. state of Washington. Washington ranks second in the United States in the production of wine, behind only California. While there are some viticultural activities in the cooler, wetter western half of the state, the majority (99%) of wine grape production takes place in the desert-like eastern half. The rain shadow of the Cascade Range leaves the Columbia River Basin with around 8 inches of annual rain fall, making irrigation and water rights of paramount interest to the Washington wine industry. Washington wines.

Oregon has established an international reputation for its production of wine. Oregon has several different growing regions within the state's borders which are well-suited to the cultivation of grapes; additional regions straddle the border between Oregon and the states of Washington and Idaho. Wine making dates back to pioneer times in the 1840s, with commercial production beginning in the 1960s. Oregon wines.
  • Willamette Valley - The Willamette Valley AVA is the wine growing region which encompasses the Willamette Valley. The climate of Willamette Valley is mild year-round, with cool, wet winters and warm, dry summers; extreme temperatures are uncommon. This region is most famous for its Pinot Noir, and also produces large amounts of Pinot Gris, Riesling, and Chardonnay. The region also produces Cabernet Sauvignon, Gewürztraminer, Müller-Thurgau, Sémillon, and Zinfandel grapes, but in far smaller quantities.

  • Southern Oregon - The Southern Oregon AVA is an AVA which was formed as the union of two existing AVAs—the Rogue Valley AVA and the Umpqua Valley AVA. (A small strip of connecting territory is included in the Southern Oregon AVA to make it a contiguous region; however, this strip passes through mountains regions not suitable for vineyards.) This AVA was established in 2004 to allow the two principal regions in Southern Oregon to jointly market themselves.

  • Columbia Gorge - The Columbia Gorge AVA is found in the Columbia Gorge. This region straddles the Columbia River, and thus lies in both Oregon and Washington; it is made up of Hood River and Wasco counties in Oregon, and Skamania and Klickitat counties in Washington. The region has nearly 40 vineyards, growing a wide variety of grapes, including Syrah, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer, Zinfandel, Cabernet, Pinot Gris, Riesling, and Sangiovese.

  • Walla Walla Valley - Portions of northeastern Oregon are part of the Walla Walla Valley AVA, which was established in 1984. This appellation, which is part of the Columbia Valley AVA, lies primarily within Washington state. This region has nearly 100 wineries and 1,200 acres planted. Wines grown in the valley include Syrah, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon, as well as Sangiovese and a few exotic varietals including Counoise, Carmenère, Mourvèdre, Cabernet Franc, Nebbiolo and Barbera.

  • Snake River Valley - new viticultural area along the Snake River was established on April 9, 2007. Principally located in Idaho, the area also encompasses two large counties in Eastern Oregon, Baker County and Malheur County. However, the AVA is quite large and warmer microclimates within the area can also support different types of grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.


Rocky Mountain Region

Colorado wine refers to wine made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of Colorado. Colorado's grape growing regions contain some of the highest elevation vineyards in the world, with most viticulture in the state practiced between 4,000 feet and 7,000 feet feet above sea level. The mountain climate ensures warm summer days and cool nights. Colorado is home to two designated American Viticultural Areas, where most of the vineyards in the state are located. Approximately 60 commercial wineries operate in Colorado and about 750 acres are planted to grapevines. Colorado wines.

Idaho wine refers to wine made from the U.S. state of Idaho. Idaho has a long history of wine production with the first vineyards in the Pacific Northwest being planted here in the 1860s. Like in other areas Prohibition in the United States virtually wiped out the Idaho wine industry in the early twentieth century only to have it resurrected again in the 1970s. The majority of the state's wineries are located in the Snake River valley west of Boise. Ste Chapelle Winery, founded in 1976, was Idaho's first bonded commercial winery. Today it is the fifth largest winery in the Pacific Northwest, owning no vineyards of their own, but purchasing grapes from over two thirds of the vineyards planted land in the state. Idaho wines.


Southwestern United States

Texas has a long history of wine production. The sunny and dry climate of the major wine making regions in the state have drawn comparison to Portuguese wines. Some of the earliest recorded Texas wines were produced by Spanish missionaries in the 1650s near El Paso. The state is home to over 36 members of the Vitis grape vine family with fifteen being native to the state, more than any other region on earth. The Texan wine industry is continuing its steady pace of expansion and has gained a reputation as an established wine growing region in the United States. Texas is divided into three main wine growing regions with a vast range of diversity and microclimates that allows many different types of grapevines to grow in the state. Texas wines.
  • North-Central Region - spans the northern third of the state from the border of New Mexico across the Texas Panhandle and towards Dallas. This includes the Texas High Plains AVA which has the highest concentration of grape growers in the state.

  • South-Eastern Region - which encompasses the area around Austin, San Antonio, and Houston. In recent years this area's wine industry has been hard hit by Pierce's Disease. The high humidity around the northern end of this area makes it difficult to grow vinifera grapes, while vines in the Muscadine family flourish. To the south and center of the area is the Texas Hill Country AVA where vinifera is grown. At the far south end of this region, along the Mexico–United States border is the state's oldest winery, Val Verde, which has been in operation for over a century, making sweet fortified wines.

  • Trans-Pecos Regions - which produces about 40 percent of the state's grape in the highest altitude vineyards of the area. More than two thirds of all the wine produced in Texas comes from this area. The calcareous soil in the Texas High Plains is characterized as red sandy loam (tiera roja) over caliche (limestone) with moderate low fertility, a terroir similar to that found in Coonawarra in Australia. The vines are exposed to long days of sunshine and cool nights due to an elevation of over 3500 feet. Cold temperatures during the winter gives the vines opportunity to shut down and go dormant before the growing season.
New Mexico has the longest history of wine production in the United States. In 1629, Franciscan friar Garcia de Zuniga and a Capuchin monk named Antonio de Arteaga planted the first wine grapes in the Rio Grande valley of southern New Mexico. Viticulture took hold in the valley, and by the year 1880, grapes were grown on over 3,000 acres, and wineries produced over 1,000,000 gallons of wine. New Mexico wines.


Midwestern United States

Missouri wine refers to wine made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of Missouri. European immigrants, especially from German states in the early to mid-1800s, founded the wine industry in Missouri. Later Italian immigrants also entered wine production. In the mid-1880s, more wine was produced by volume in Missouri than in any other state. Before Prohibition, Missouri was the second-largest wine-producing state. The most prominent Missouri-grown variety is Cynthiana/Norton, believed to be a variety of Vitis aestivalis. Other varieties grown include native American grapes, Concord and Catawba, as well as French-American hybrids like Vignoles, Seyval, and Chambourcin. Missouri wines.

Illinois wine refers to any wine that is made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of Illinois. In 2006, Shawnee Hills, in southern Illinois, was named the state's first American Viticultural Area. As of 2008, there were 79 wineries in Illinois, utilizing approximately 1,100 acres of vines. In 2004, twelve grape varieties accounties for 89% of grape area harvested in Illinois. The favorite varieties, in descending order by area devoted to production, were Chardonel, Chambourcin, Vignoles, Traminette, Concord, Foch, Seyval, Norton, Vidal Blanc, Frontenac, Niagara, and Cayuga White. Many of these varieties are "hybrid" varieties. These hybrids, which are adapted to the cold climates of central and northern Illinois, are grapes grown from vines that are hybridized descendants of both European vinifera grapes and native American grape varieties. Illinois wines.

Minnesota wine refers to wine made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of Minnesota. You might be surprised to know that you can visit Minnesota wineries and taste Minnesota wines that are crafted from our own Minnesota grown fresh fruit. Many visitors to Minnesota are delighted to discover our thriving wine-growing industry. Minnesota's early autumn frosts cut our growing season short which has led to the development of hardy grape varieties that can be harvested early, and that can also survive our Minnesota winters. One reason that Minnesota vineyards are possible is that Minneapolis lies at the same 45 degrees north latitude as does the Bordeaux wine region in France. Like the Bordeaux region, Minnesota summers are sunny and warm and we usually have plenty of rainfall. Minnesota wines.


Great Lakes region

Michigan wine refers to any wine that is made in the U.S. state of Michigan. As of 2007, there were 2,000 acres under wine-grape cultivation and 64 commercial wineries in Michigan, producing 425,000 cases of wine (1 million U.S. gallons). Most of the grapes grown in Michigan are grown for "table" uses (like jelly and grape juice), not wine. Of 100,000 short tons of grapes produced in 2005, only 4,600 tons were used for wine-making. However, the proportion of vinifera grapes used in winemaking is increasing. In 2005, the wine industry pressed 2,640 tons of European vinifera grapes, 1,660 tons of hybrid varieties, and 300 tons of American varieties. European grapes grown include Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Syrah, Pinot Gris, and Riesling. Michigan wines.

New York wine refers to wine made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of New York. New York ranks third in grape production by volume after California and Washington. The range of wines made in New York include Riesling, Seyval Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, sparkling wines, and Cabernet Sauvignon. The state has four major wine-growing regions, including Lake Erie AVA on the western end of the state, the Finger Lakes AVA in the west-central area, the Hudson River Region AVA in eastern New York, and the eastern end of the Long Island AVA. The growing season in the Lake Erie and Finger Lakes regions ranges from 180 to 200 days a year, while on Long Island, the season is extended to 220 days and the humidity is higher and the fall precipitation is somewhat higher as well. New York wines.

Ohio wine refers to wine made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of Ohio. Historically, this has been wine grown from native American species of grapes, not European wine grapes, although hybrid and vinifera grapes are now common in Ohio. Currently, over 110 commercial wineries operate in Ohio, and there are five designated American Viticultural Areas partially or completely located within the state. Ohio wines.


East Coast of the United States

Wine production in the U.S. state of New Jersey dates back to the region's colonial era when, in the mid-18th century, wines were made by local vintners on a small scale. The state's first commercial operation, Renault Winery, was opened in 1864 in southern Atlantic County and remains one of the oldest continuously-operated wineries in the United States. Owing to state laws limiting the number of wineries allowed to open, New Jersey wine production remained small until 1981, when laws were relaxed and newer vineyards were created. Today, approximately thirty three wineries exist in eleven of the state's twenty-one counties. Most are family operated and are predominantly located in the state's hilly northwestern region as well its sandy flat southern plain. Together they make an estimated 1,000,000 US gallons (3,785,400 l) of wine per year, making New Jersey the fifth-largest wine-producing U.S. state. New Jersey wines.

Pennsylvania wine refers to wine made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. The climate in Pennsylvania is mild compared to surrounding states, with the moderating effects of Lake Erie to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. More than 90 wineries are located in all parts of the state, including five designated American Viticultural Areas. Pennsylvania is the eighth-largest wine producing state in the country. Pennsylvania wines.

Virginia wine refers to wine made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of Virginia. Wine has been produced in the area since the early days of European colonization in the 17th century. Virginia has hot humid summers that can be challenging to viticulture. Since 2000, Chardonnay has been the most produced grape variety, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon, Viognier, and Cabernet Franc. French hybrids and native American grape varieties account for nearly 20% of total winegrape production in the state. Virginia wines.

North Carolina wine refers to wine made from grapes grown in the U.S. state of North Carolina. Wine has been produced in the area since the early days of European colonization in the 17th century. wine growers in North Carolina were the first to cultivate a native American grape variety, the Scuppernong, which produces a sweet wine, examples of which are still being made in the state. Most wine produced in North Carolina since the year 2000 is made from vitis vinifera grape varieties, although French hybrid and Vitis labrusca varieties remain common. North Carolina ranks tenth in both grape and wine procuction in the United States. In 2007, North Carolina contained 55 wineries and 350 vineyards. North Carolina wines.


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