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Pope Valley

James Laube
Posted: March 8, 2000

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Pope Valley

Total Acres: *3,000

Total Bordeaux Varieties: *2,075 acres

*Wine Spectator estimates

REFERENCE CABERNETS: Flora Springs Cypress Ranch and St. Supry Dollarhide Ranch

REGIONAL CHARACTER: Pope Valley is cooler than Napa in the winter, spring and fall. But in the prime growing season, its days are warmer and nights are cooler, and it doesn't receive the same San Pablo Bay breezes that the valley proper does. Still, the wines, both reds and whites, are at least very good and possibly more. Reds such as Cabernet and Merlot are very good, though they usually find their way into generic Napa Valley blends and therefore lose their individuality.

Independent growers successfully lobbied to have Pope Valley included in the Napa Valley AVA, and it is increasingly a popular site for new vineyards because land is less expensive. Among the major vineyard owners, independent grower Juliana Vineyards (350 acres planted, with clients including Keenan and Shafer), Flora Springs (156 acres), Heitz (248 acres) and Mildara Blass, the Australian firm (300 acres plantable).

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Pope Valley
Pope Valley

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