Napa Valley is a viticultural wine producing region located in Napa County, California - America. Napa Valley has worked hard to be regarded as one of the leading wine regions in the world. Dedicated wine production in the region dates back to the 19th century, but quality wine production began in the 1960's.
Napa Valley has an ideal climate that provides vintage-to-vintage consistency and exceptional quality that other wine-growing regions can only dream of. Napa Valley has a remarkable diversity of micro-climates, weather and geography, as well as some of the most diverse soils. As a result, a number of premium grape varietals thrive, and it was a John Patchett who in 1858 established Napa Valley's first commercial vineyard.

 

Viticulture in Napa at the time, suffered several setbacks in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, including an outbreak of phylloxera - Prohibition and then the Great Depression. In 1976, the region received a boost from the famed 'Paris Wine Tasting' of 1976, which featured a Napa Valley Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon going head-to-head with several famous French wines in a blind tasting format and coming out top. The results of this tasting cemented the region's reputation as a producer of world class wines.
Napa Valley features more than 500 wineries (that you can actually visit) - though just 48km long and a few km’s wide, the valley vineyards are flanked by the Mayacamas Mountain Range on the western and northern sides the Vaca Mountains on the eastern side, with several smaller valleys within these ranges.
The main valley floor gradually rises from sea level at the southern end to 110m above sea level at the northern end in Calistoga at the foot of Mount Saint Helena. The soil in the southern end of the valley consists mainly of sediments deposited by earlier advances and retreats of San Pablo Bay - while the soil at the northern end of the valley contains a large volume of volcanic lava and ash.
The main varietals found in the quality wines produced include; Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Zinfandel and Cabernet Franc - to name a few. In spite of its international reputation, Napa Valley is one of the smallest wine-growing regions in the world. The region’s established viticultural practices result in low yields of high-quality grapes, from which skilled winemakers craft Napa Valley’s renowned wines.