Sonoma Carneros Soil & Terrain
The Effect of Soil on Carneros Wine Production
The southern part of the AVA is extremely flat and only a few feet above sea level. A multitude of fossilized sea life exists in the soil due to the fact that the San Pablo Bay once covered much of the region.
Because of Carneros’ distinctive soils and cool, consistent climate, certain varietals do extremely well. About 80% of the AVA’s production is either Pinot Noir or Chardonnay. Some excellent examples of Riesling and Gewurztraminer are also produced in Carneros.
The region’s lean soils are valued for growing acidic Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that is suitable for sparkling wine production. Characteristic features of a Carneros Chardonnay include apple and honey flavors. Some have hints of herb and spice. The best examples can be aged for 8 years or longer.