Sierra Foothills: Amador county

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

The heart of the county’s wine production is its two AVAs, Fiddletown and California Shenandoah Valley (see below), where pre-prohibition Zinfandel vines thrive and old-school Barbera has found new life. Modernity also exists here, in Ann Kraemer’s Shake Ridge Ranch, near the hamlet of Sutter Creek. Kraemer, an established Napa Valley viticulturist, has applied Napa vineyard expertise to a region unaccustomed to such precision. As a result, her Zinfandel, Syrah, Barbera, Tempranillo, and other varieties are highly sought after by boutique producers looking for authenticity over commercial appeal. Typical elevations are 800 to 1,200 ft/240 to 360 m.