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How to Buy California's Top-Rated Wines

How to Buy California's Top-Rated Wines

Wine Spectator's Top 100 list is out and 18 Golden State bottles made the cut—here's everything you need to know

Posted 5 years agoby John Godfrey

California wines enjoyed another banner year according to the editors of Wine Spectator magazine. All told, 18 Golden State wines made its annual Top 100 list, including five bottles each from the state's most established wine regions, Sonoma County and the Napa Valley. Santa Barbara County and Mendocino County both had two bottles on the list, while Amador, Contra Costa, and Yolo counties were also represented.

Bedrock Wine Co. landed the No. 10 spot with its 2016 The Bedrock Heritage Sonoma Valley, an intriguing blend of Zinfandel, Carignane, Mataro, Syrah, and Alicante Bouschet. According to Wine Spectator editors, it's a “knockout red, focused and well-built but loaded with personality, with expressive blackberry and dark Asian spice notes leading to intense yet refined smoky plum, orange zest and cracked pepper flavors.”

Easton's Zinfadel Amador County qualifies as a bit of a surprise honoree, securing the No. 45 spot because it “epitomizes fine Sierra Foothills Zinfandel, offering vibrant, briary raspberry, smoked pepper and wild sweet anise flavors that stretch out on the zesty finish.” And the Carol Shelton Rosé Wild Thing Rendezvous Mendocino County stands out as one of the least expensive wines on the list, with a retail price tag of $15. 

It's worth noting that the list is not overloaded with extremely expensive or rare vintages. Indeed, Wine Spectator makes its selections “based on quality, value, availability and excitement.” To that end, we want to help you track down these special California wines—for gifts or for yourself. Below you will find links to all the Golden State wines that made the list, along with suggested retail prices. Pro tip: Don't sleep on these wines—they are sure to move fast.

No. 6 Aubert Chardonnay Carneros Larry Hyde & Sons, $85

No. 10 The Bedrock Heritage Sonoma Valley, $46

No. 25 Tensley Syrah Santa Barbara County Colson Canyon Vineyard, $42

No. 27 Roederer Estate Brut Anderson Valley, $24

No. 36 Ferrari-Carano Chardonnay Russian River Valley Tré Terre Vineyard Select Collection, $28

No. 40 Cline Zinfandel Contra Costa County Ancient Vines, $15

No. 45 Easton Zinfandel Amador County, $22

No. 53 Sequoia Grove Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley, $42

No. 62 Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc California, $15

No. 71 Odette Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap District, $140

No. 78 Landmark Chardonnay Sonoma County Overlook, $25

No. 80 Beringer Cabernet Sauvignon Knights Valley, $36

No. 86 Massican Annia Napa Valley, $30

No. 91 Ridge Lytton Springs Dry Creek Valley, $40

No. 93 Carol Shelton Rosé Wild Thing Rendezvous Mendocino County, $15

No. 95 Ghost Pines Pinot Noir Yolo-Sonoma-Monterey Counties Winemaker's Blend, $23

No. 98 Loring Pinot Noir Sta. Rita Hills, $38

No. 100 Foley Johnson Meritage Rutherford, $45

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