Vineyards & Wineries LIFESTYLE

Overview of Vineyards & Wineries


In the Sierra foothills just south of Rancho Murieta, Amador County is home to more than 40 vineyards and wineries. The area benefits from a warm climate tempered by cool breezes flowing from the Sierra. Despite the often chilly nights, it’s too warm to grow Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, and Cabernet Sauvignon is found in spare amounts. But for Zinfandel, Barbera, Rhone grapes and other varieties that thrive in warmer climates, Amador is a sweet spot.

At about 3,700 planted acres, Amador is the smallest wine-growing region in the state – but produces fruit known for its intensity and diversity. The region is filled with sandy loam and volcanic soils that promote drainage, along with prime sunlight exposure in its valleys and rolling hills.

Some 600 acres of Amador’s vineyards & wineries date back to the 1950s, making this a land of old-vine Zinfandel. The Original Grandpere Vineyard in the Shenandoah Valley even has lineage to the Gold Rush days. It bears fruit that’s used by the likes of Andis and Vino Noceto, and said to be the oldest documented Zinfandel vineyard in the country with plantings that date to 1869.

Amador County Vineyards & Wineries