The Most Magical Vineyard in the World
Apparently Gallo is marketing a wine in Europe, Asia and Canada that appears to come from the "Sierra Valley" appellation here in California.
What’s really cool is that Gallo is the first winery in America (the world?) to actually get the trademark for a specific appellation. This means that no matter who uses grapes from the Sierra Valley appellation, they can’t use the name of that appellation on the bottle the way Gallo has.
It’s almost as though it’s a phantom appellation.
But…This reporter has actually been to "Sierra Valley" and can report that it really is an amazing and unique terroir:
To get to Sierra Valley you have to travel down the Deep End Road in the Central Valley. Eventually you have to go off of the Deep End and follow Cockamamie Street. That will take you directly into the heart of Sierra Valley.
There is really something magical about this appellation. I was particularly taken with one vineyard that is identified as The Emperor’s Clothing Estate. The vineyards were perfectly manicured. In fact, the vineyard is actually "sun drenched"; that is, the sunshine ACTUALLY drips off the leaves on the vines. I know this sounds miraculous, but I read it myself.
Now, if you follow Cockamamie Street and go Around the Bend, you’ll find another vineyard site in the Sierra Valley: Farciville Valley Vineyards. Most remarkable about the Farciville Valley planting is that in between the rows of vines they have planted Beanstalks. Jack, the caretaker of Farciville Vineyards, explained to me that the grapes, when harvested, each weigh over 20 lbs, all because of the special beanstalk cover crop planted between the rows.
For more information on this wonderful California appellation, check out Dr. Vino’s Blog.