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About Wine

California Wine Exports

The United States is the fourth largest wine producing country in the world. Ninety percent of its wine is made in California. However, the United States is also the world’s largest wine consumer. As a result, California exports a relatively low proportion of its wine when compared to the other top producing nations. In 2011, California exported just over 50 million cases, less than 20% of it's total production.

Although its vintners are making an effort to change this, Napa Valley wines are particularly hard to find beyond North America. Napa Valley has a grand reputation for quality but produces only 4% of California’s wine by volume. Some of it’s most celebrated wines are made in volumes as low as 100 cases and are sold direct-to-consumer only. The waiting list for such wines are long and prices can be several hundred dollars per bottle.

Fortunately, other California growing regions offer both higher volumes and lower prices. Sonoma County, Paso Robles and Livermore Valley are all good sources for both Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel. And they produce enough that you can actually find some high-quality wines from those regions overseas.

In the UK, Tesco Wine offers special offers and discounts on several California wines within the store’s New World range. These include the UK’s best-selling label, Blossom Hill (coming primarily from the Paicines growing region in Central California), and also well-regarded varietal wines from premium growing regions. There is a Sonoma County Zinfandel by Ravenswood one of that variety’s best-known producers and Nth Degree Livermore Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from Wente Vineyards. Founded in 1873, Wente Vineyards is the oldest, continuously-operated family-owned winery in the United States. Nth Degree is their top-of-the-line series of wines. Tesco also has a very good Napa Valley Merlot from Atalon.

Follow NorCalWine on Twitter for breaking wine news, information on events and more. Become a fan and join the NorCal Wine community on FacebookAlso check out our comprehensive Northern California winery listings. They are very useful for planning a tasting trip or just getting in touch with a winery.

This article is original to NorCalWine.com. Copyright 2013 NorCal Wine. All rights reserved.