Winemaker Wells Guthrie believes that quality starts with the vineyard. In pursuit of this, Copaín has created and will continue to seek relationships with growers who are committed to what they believe are the key attributes necessary to produce world class wines: vineyard exposition, clonal selections, and dedication to organic farming practices.
In the tradition of great regional village wines from France Wells also produces a series of wine under Copain's Saisons des Vins program. Wines comes from the great regional village wines of France. There are four wines, one for each season of the year. the Varietals are chosen to coincide with the climate and cuisine associated with each. The Rose is for Spring (les printemps) when the weather starts to warm and the picnics begin. The Viognier (formerly Sauvignon Blanc) is crisp and clean for the hot Summer (l'ete) months to accompany the cool salads and dining al fresco. The cooling days of Autumn (l'automne) bring all the earthy fall dishes that call for the perfect Pinot Noir. Finally, Winter (l'hiver), with its cold days beckon for hearty fare and a rich warming Syrah.
In October, 2004, Copain was named "Most Promising New Winery" in the annual Wine Issue of Food & Wine Magazine. Wells was quoted as saying, "I'm trying to keep one foot here and one in the Rhône, to make wines that hem in the ripe fruit we get here and have the elegance of great European wines." View all Copain Wines
About North CoastView a map of North Coast wineries
Beyond Napa and Sonoma in the north you find a couple of other counties producing great wine. Among these are Mendocino and Lake County. The northernmost California winegrowing regions, these two counties are right above Napa and Sonoma, geographically. Yet, wine-wise they are very different – both from their southern neighbors and from each other.
Notable FactsMendocino has a high amount of organic vintners and vines. The first winery to settle here was Fetzer, which practices organic viticulture and holds some of the most vineyard land in the area. Mendocino has many pockets of micro-climates while Lake County, being smaller in size, is less diverse climactically. As for the grapes, Chardonnay is the most popular in both counties, but there are also some excellent Sauvignon Blancs, particularly in the Lake County. In red wine, Zinfandel leads the way, followed by Rhone Blends and Petite Sirah. The reds in both counties are complex and sumptuous. Anderson Valley is a sub-AVA of Mendicino and is quite well known for its excellent cool climate, producing the delicious Roederer Estate sparkling wines and some wonderful cool-climate Syrah.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.