By Gary L Peters
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Additional resources for American Winescapes: The Cultural Landscapes Of America's Wine Country
Carignane remains the leading grape in France in terms of acreage (though hardly quality) and is the true workhorse of French viticulture. Nevertheless, its acreage has declined considerably in recent years. In Alnerica (again, mainly in California), Carignane is something of a latecomer compared to Petite Sirah, having arrived only after Prohibidon ended in 1933. Carignane is a moderate-sized grape, black in color, that grows in medium-sized clusters. Its main appeal is prodigious yields, not high quality; in cooler climates it yields perhaps five to eight tons per acre, though in the warmer regions it may yield up to twelve or thirteen tons per acre.
As Galifornia's Fred Brander and Jon Bolta can be made into excellent white wines. Sauvignon Blanc grapes are typically golden yellow in color and grow in small clusters. This cultivar yields reasonably well and has been planted throughout most nf the cooler viticultural regions of California, as well as in Oregon, Wshington, Idaho, Ariwna, New Mexico, Texas, Georgia, North Carolina, Wrginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and New York. There are now perhaps 3,000 acres of Sauvignon Blanc growing on American soil.
T h e Southern Rh6ne is best known for its blended wines, including the widely known Chgteauneuf-du-Pape (which may legally include up to thirteen different cultivars in its wines). Wines have been produced in the Rh6ne Valley and transported along the Rh6ne River for more than 2,000 years. Mthough it is best known for it5 red wines, the Rhbne Valley produces white wines as well, and at least one white Rh6ne cultivar (Vi~ognier)has materialized in a few American vineyards recently. Because Petite Sirah was grown in America (almost exclusively in California) about a century before the current popular aend toward Rh6ne cultivars began, we begin with it, even though most winegrowers omit it from their Rh6ne blends and it may have no "true" linkage to the Rh6ne Valley whatsoever.
American Winescapes: The Cultural Landscapes Of America's Wine Country by Gary L Peters