Wine Enthusiast awarded Alexander Valley “Wine Region of the Year” in 2006. There are many reasons this region is ideal for prestigious wines. Fog enters the Alexander Valley after sundown and lingers in the valley until it burns off. Mountain soil is another reason Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, in particular, thrive in the Alexander Valley mountains. Volcanic subsoils can be found in the eastern hills—the result of ancient volcanic activity. The region’s topsoil is alluvial material from both sedimentary and volcanic sources deposited over thousands of years by the Russian River and local tributaries. This complex geology results in a diversity of soils. The soils of the region’s terraces, benchlands and hillsides are gravely clay loam and become progressively thinner and rockier as elevation increases. The French call this “terroir”, or “a sense of place”.
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