Soil, climate and elevation all separate Chalk Hill from other parts of Sonoma’s Russian River Valley. Occupying the northeast corner of the larger Russian River AVA, Chalk Hill is named for its unique, volcanically-derived, chalky white ash soils. These mildly fertile soils lend themselves to the production of excellent whites, particularly Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Chalk Hill’s five wineries sit above the rest of the valley, on the western bench land slopes of the Mayacamas Mountains, separating Sonoma from Napa. The appellation has over 1,000 acres under vine, enjoying a warmer climate, relative to the rest of the Russian River Valley. Due to the higher elevation of this viticultural area, vineyards escape much of the cooling fog that regularly shrouds the lower-lying growing areas near the river.
In the southern Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina and Georgia vineyards are small and few, yet the establishment of the Upper Hiwassee Highlands could bring much more.
Alive & Well here
Madame Merlot, you’re a big gal, soft and smoky; how we love your full, curvaceous figure. But you are