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Exploring Sonoma County’s coolest vineyards plus top wines from each

Unlike its inland neighbour Napa, many of Sonoma County’s AVA vineyards benefit from the coastal conditions, being near to the Pacific ocean. We take a closer look at three of them and discover that it is different to be cool – and cool to be different.

While much of California’s Sonoma County is warm all year round, the maritime climate of its coastal wine-growing regions is a viticultural sweet spot, combining cool, even temperatures, cold winds and fog. A Pacific marine layer cools down those appellations closest to the coast each morning, lingering in some places before burning off in the midday sun. Cold ocean air funnels its way inland from the coast through corridors, resulting in high winds that affect grape-growing conditions.

Scroll down to see a selection of Sonoma County’s top cool-climate wines

Brooke Herron’s pick of cool-climate Sonoma County wines

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