A labor of love has restored the winemaking tradition to the North Yuba region, deep in the rugged terrain of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Part of this mountainous region was purchased in 1971 by the Fellowship of Friends, who wished to revive the area’s winemaking heritage. They terraced the slopes, which range from gradual to drastic ascents, a task made even more complicated by a sub-layer of very dense, dark plutonic rock. (Plutonic rocks are made from magmas that never reached the earth's surface before cooling off and turning into rock.)
The AVA’s first winery now has about 44 acres under vine and is named Renaissance, a tribute to the Fellowship’s mission. The wines are estate bottled, with all the grapes coming from this 30-square-mile appellation. The main focus is Cabernet Sauvignon, but Renaissance also specializes in Rhone varietals, Syrah, Grenache, Viognier and Roussanne, as well as various dessert wines.