Text Size:-+

California's Current Wine Revolution

new_ca_wine_cover.jpgWhat does the world look like to those in the midst of a quiet revolution? As with the frog in a pot of slowly heating water, sometimes change can be hard to see when it doesn't arrive with a clap of thunder, an overnight recession, or live narration from a serious-looking news reporter with a microphone.

If you weren't paying particularly close attention, or your relationship to California wine consisted of what you might find on your supermarket shelves each week as you shopped for your dinner, things might not look all that different from a few years ago.

But were you to step back and consider what has happened in the past 10 years in California, the pace of change would be steep indeed. Look back 20 years and the landscape of wine in the state might as well be on another planet.

The shift in California is still underway, but its trajectory seems clear. Clear enough for San Francisco Chronicle wine editor Jon Bonné to have penned The New California Wine: a Guide to the Producers and Wines Behind a Revolution in Taste. The book, which went on sale around the world last week, aims to answer the two questions that tend to be asked at any given turning point: How did we get here? And where are we headed?

Read the rest of my review on JancisRobinson.Com.

This article is my monthly column at JancisRobinson.Com, Alder on America, and is available only to subscribers of her web site. If you're not familiar with the site, I urge you to give it a try. It's only £6.99 a month or £69 per year ($11/mo or $109 a year for you Americans) and well worth the cost, especially considering you basically get free, searchable access to the Oxford Companion to Wine ($65) and the World Atlas of Wine ($50) as part of the subscription costs. Click here to sign up.

Comments (2)

Mick Cameron wrote:
11.20.13 at 1:24 PM

The next phase in the revolution is to move away from the practice of irrigation as much as possible. This has not only an obvious climate change logic but a very compelling argument for authenticity of terroir is made by one of the most respected grower/producers in our state. In my recent discussion with Christian Moueix of Dominus Estate, he speaks adamantly about his philosophy regarding this issue.


Alder wrote:
11.20.13 at 4:53 PM

Yes, I believe irrigation is one of the key issues of California winegrowing, not only for reasons of quality, but also because of its environmental impacts.

Comment on this entry

(will not be published)
(optional -- Google will not follow)

Type the characters you see in the picture above.

Buy My Book!

small_final_covershot_dropshadow.jpg A wine book like no other. Photographs, essays, and wine recommendations. Learn more.

Follow Me On:

Twitter Facebook Pinterest Instagram Delectable Flipboard

Most Recent Entries

Putting a Cork in Your Thanksgiving Wine Anxiety Plumbing the Depths of Portugal: A Tasting Journey Vinography Images: Rain at Last The Mysterious Art of Selling Direct Critical Consolidation in Wine What Has California Got Against Wineries? Dirty Money for a Legendary Brand Vinography Images: Tendrils Highlights from Tasting Champagne with the Masters Off to Portugal for a Drink

Favorite Posts From the Archives

Masuizumi Junmai Daiginjo, Toyama Prefecture Wine.Com Gives Retailers (and Consumers) the Finger 1961 Hospices de Beaune Emile Chandesais, Burgundy Wine Over Time The Better Half of My Palate 1999 Királyudvar "Lapis" Tokaji Furmint, Hungary What's Allowed in Your Wine and Winemaking Why Community Tasting Notes Sites Will Fail Appreciating Wine in Context The Soul vs. The Market 1989 Fiorano Botte 48 Semillion,Italy

Archives by Month


Required Reading for Wine Lovers

The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud Adventures on the Wine Route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson The World's Greatest Wine Estates by Robert M. Parker, Jr.