Guenoc Langtry Meritage 1991
Guenoc Valley lies sixty miles north of San Francisco — a breathtaking panorama of oak-strewn grasslands, rolling green hills, craggy outcroppings and perfect volcanic cinder cones, painted with the shimmer of a dozen azure lakes. The 21,349-acre Langtry Estate is one of the largest contiguous private land holdings in California, and among the most beautiful.
Guenoc wines are sourced from a blend of estate vineyards and premier growing sites from around California. Soils range from rocky volcanic highlands to mountain valleys lined with gravelly riverbeds. The combination of these unique sites allows us to produce wines that exemplify the diversity found in these distinct regions.
Guenoc California wines embody the independent spirit of famed actress and winery founder, Lillie Langtry, who defied the conventions of her time and forged her own path, becoming a Lake County vintner in 1888. The wines are fresh, vivacious, and distinctly California.
California is a winemaking colossus; by itself it is the fourth largest producer in the world. Red wine accounts for 56% of the total by volume, and red grapes 63% of total acres planted. In addition, a number of California red wines are heralded as being among the most prestigious and sought-after wines in the world.
While the state’s incredibly diverse geography, soils and microclimates allow for a wide array of styles, the key factor unifying California red wine is the abundance of sunshine and a long, consistent growing season. This leads to well-developed fruit marked both by impressive ripeness and balancing acidity.
The state’s most famous red wine region, of course, is Napa Valley, where Cabernet Sauvignon reigns as king. But California boasts a wealth of other impressive appellations. The much larger and climatically varied Sonoma County also produces world class California Cabernet, along with wonderful examples of California Pinot Noir and Zinfandel.
Fine versions of Cabernet and Zinfandel hail from Paso Robles as well, which is also gaining fame with Rhone varietals like Syrah and Grenache. As for Pinot Noir, terrific examples can be found from AVA’s such as Anderson Valley, Carneros, Santa Lucia Highlands and Sta. Rita Hills. Wineries in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties are making wonderful Syrahs, and the Sierra Foothill appellations are proving to be an experimental hotbed, with Italian and Spanish varietals employed to great effect.
This of course is a mere sketch. The subject of California red wine is as deep and broad as an ocean, and absolutely a joy to explore!