Our wine picks for California Wine Month

September marks the start of California Wine Month, a yearly celebration of the region’s wonderful winemaking culture. Featuring regional festivals, dinners, vineyard tours, and intimate tastings – the event appeals to serious wine lovers and newbies alike.

Whilst you may not be able to make it to the Golden State to experience this joyous celebration of Californian wine first-hand, luckily there are plenty of incredible bottles you can source worldwide.

If you’re looking for inspiration, consider the below list a great starting point. Who knows, that first sip may just encourage you to head Stateside and experience this incredible wine region up close!

Hirsch Vineyards West Ridge Estate Pinot Noir

I have no doubt lives have been changed by this wine. Hirsch are among the most lauded California producers by Pinotphiles. Intense and complex, this is an expression of California as much as Pinot Noir. There’s inviting richness but also delicacy. Truffles and earth, but a New World heart of vibrant berry fruit.

The Halcyon Riesling

Some of us like something sweeter. Softer. Richer. But it’s so hard to find. So, when you come across wines like this with its lightly-sweet style and sweet peach and lightly-honeyed style, hold them dear. Sweeter wines make wonderful companions to spicier dishes. But also this is gorgeous to sip through the evening. It’s aromatic, fragrant with a beautiful balance of lifted citrus freshness.

Fess Parker Chardonnay

The curious geography of California’s Central Coast lets winemakers experiment. To make the most of little valleys to bring out different styles. It’s the extremes of warm days that flesh out the pear fruit. And cold nights that keep tangy, crisp apple that make this distinctive. It’s oaky with baked pastry and made for roasted chicken, turkey, corn and pies.

Inglenook Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon

When Francis Ford Coppola bought a piece of history at Inglenook, he took on an estate modelled on the finest Bordeaux châteaux, and it still makes wines in an homage to Bordeaux with the meaty heft of Napa. Currants, blueberries and those supple, soft Californian tannins cry out for a steak.

Barra of Medocino Pinot Noir Rose

It’s crackers to think that a generation ago, rose was a flibbertigibbet footnote in the wine statistics. Today there are pinks of every hue and palates from the tangy to tropical. This is in the melon, peach, strawberry, fruit salad variety. Lots of juicy fruit and light on the herbal notes. A dry wine, lovely with salads and tortillas (I discovered) but with a sun-warmed fruit.

Interested in California? Visit with The Wine Show and Winerist

The Wine Show has partnered with specialist wine and food travel company Winerist to provide experiences in many of the countries we’ve featured on screen. Together we are offering unique wine tastings, holidays and tours that we are sure will thrill and exhilarate you. Book now to experience the unforgettable.