The United States is the fourth-largest wine-producing country in the world — it’s the number one consumer as well! Undoubtedly, wine has found its way into people’s hearts. The question is, where does the wine come from? What are the largest wine-producing states of America? Here’s an introduction.
The Golden State leads the list of the wine-producing states of US. California produces 89% of the country’s wine and alone makes more wine than most countries.
Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay are the leading grapes here, but there are at least one hundred more. California also produces the most expensive and highly regarded wines in America.
2. Washington State
The Columbia Valley is cold and dry and enjoys plenty of sunlight. These are the right conditions for growing white Riesling and red Cabernet, Syrah and Merlot. Washington State is home to almost 1,000 wineries, and the wine’s quality is consistently good.
Oregon is a synonym for world-class Pinot Noir — it’s often compared to Burgundy, but Oregon is much more. The Willamette Valley and its many subregions offer wine worthy of any collection. Oregon might be number three, but it could very well be number one in quality. There are nearly 800 wineries in Oregon, and they’re all worth getting to know.
4. New York State
New York State is one of the northernmost wine-producing states of US, which means cold-climate grapes are much more common, including the aromatic Riesling and a few hybrids. Still, now you’ll find excellent red wine from New York as well! The finest wines come from the vineyards around the Finger Lakes.
Virginia needs no introduction. It is here where Thomas Jefferson planted some of the first East Coast vineyards. Monticello is the best-known wine region here, and Chardonnay seems to be stealing the spotlight. For wine lovers, Virginia is one of the wine-producing states of America to explore.
Texas is America’s largest state, and it is one of the largest wine producers. The Texas Hill Country is one of the most extensive protected viticultural areas in the country. Expect robust reds made with Cabernet and bold wines made with Chardonnay. Chenin Blanc produces excellent results as well!
Pennsylvania is climbing the ranks of the wine-producing states of USA, and it’s easy to see why — winemakers here have the perfect climate to grow premium cold-climate grapes. The state also has a wine quality program to ensure every bottle of wine is top-notch. With over 100 wineries scattered across the state, Pennsylvania’s wine scene is more exciting than ever.
Ohio’s talented winemakers work with Riesling, Chardonnay and a few hybrid varieties, including Vidal, to craft beautiful wine. The state’s signature grape, though, is Catawba. You’ll find the most wineries around the Ohio River Valley, but the state has five AVAs or viticultural areas, so there’s potential here.
With its gorgeous mid-west scenery, Michigan is ideal for growing cold-climate grapes, such as Riesling, Pinot Blanc and Gewurztraminer. The vines feel comfortable, particularly near the Great Lakes, where the vines benefit from its cooling breeze and tempering effect. Interestingly, Michigan is the fourth-largest grape grower in the country, but many of the grapes are meant to be eaten and not drunk.
Missouri has deep vinous traditions thanks to German settlers who brought their love for wine to the area. At least one hundred wineries call Missouri home, and most of them champion the local grape, Norton.
America is a Wine Powerhouse
This concludes our introduction to the wine-producing states of USA, but there are others; wine is a big deal in every corner of the country, and it’s produced in all wine styles with hundreds of grapes. Dry or sweet, red or white, bubbly or nice and pink — there’s a bottle of American for every occasion, budget and palate.
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