Dry Creek Valley (AVA)
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Dry Creek Valley embodies the trends and dichotomies in California wine since the current boom began in the early 1980s. The valley remains a rural setting for small family wineries, yet at the same time it has become home to the Sonoma wing of Gallo, one of the biggest and most industrialized wine producers on earth. Zinfandel was the valley’s top red grape a century ago, and its return to prominence during the last 20 years has put Dry Creek Valley back in the limelight. Only Amador County in the Sierra Foothills is as closely identified with red Zin as Dry Creek Valley is today. (Sauvignon Blanc is the valley’s signature white grape.) Water increasingly rules California’s environmental and agricultural politics, and Dry Creek’s western end is anchored by “Lake Sonoma” -- a reservoir created to ensure a steady supply of fresh water for the vineyards downstream. Finally, Dry Creek Valley is feeling the power of Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah, the unchallenged ruler and rising star, respectively, of California wine. Both are growing in acreage as Zinfandel peaks. What will the next century bring?

~ Thom Elkjer, Regional Editor

Current Feature

The multiple appellations of Washington will be tasted in a unique banquet dinner at this years Washington Association of Wine Grape Growers Annual Meeting and Trade Show. Nuances of that regional diversity have been paired with the meal being prepared by Chef Dan Carr.  [>] continue


Appellation Features

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Cabernet Sauvignon: All hail the King! But a king doth not a gentleman make. A temperamental prince in youth, you’re  [>] continue

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Featured Wines



Kachina Vineyards 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon Rich and dark, incorporating aromas and flavors of raspberry, ripe black cherry, and currant.
buy wine $38.00

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Winery sponsors of Appellation America’s coverage of the Dry Creek Valley appellation.