June 07, 2023

2023’s Best California Wine Counties

California is the nation’s wine garden and wine cellar, but which counties produce the most award-winning reds and whites, host the most wine tours, and are most popular and affordable for wine connoisseurs to visit?

Marking National Wine Day, LawnStarter pored over the data to uncork 2023’s Best California Wine Counties.

They compared all 58 counties based on five categories broken down into 18 key metrics.

Find out which 10 California counties are wine in a million (and which 10 are not so grape) below, followed by key insights from our report.

15th Annual Vacation Confidence Index

Highlights and Lowlights:

  • On Cloud Wine in Napa: You won’t go thirsty at the home of three-Michelin-starred The French Laundry. Napa outnumbers all other California counties in vintners, with nearly 270 more than Sonoma (No. 2) and 840 more than San Luis Obispo (No. 3). What’s more, Napa wines earned the most gold medals over the past four years.

  • Sonoma Silver: Sonoma, the next most recognizable name in California wine, unsurprisingly placed second in our ranking. The county boasts unmatched access to wine, numerous awards, and the most events celebrating the county’s amore for vino.

  • “Dry” Counties: Our bottom-ranking counties — Kings, Merced, Colusa, Modoc, and Alpine — might lack their own famous wines, but they’re close enough to top wine regions. Merced, for example, lies just south of Stanislaus County (No. 6). Colusa is a short drive — or Uber ride, depending on how much you drink — to Napa, Sonoma, and Lake (No. 12).

  • The Grape Escape: Our top five counties balance both high-quality wine and (inebriated) visitor-friendliness, but don’t overlook counties outside of that elite group. Riverside (No. 7), for example, ranks decently in taste and placed first in Accommodations. Mendocino (No. 8) earned high marks in Access and Accolades, as well as top-15 rankings in both Entertainment and Accommodations.

Copyright 2023 LawnStarter. All rights reserved. From https://www.lawnstarter.com.

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