Howell Mountain AVA

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Howell Mountain AVA
Wine region
Howell mountain moone tsai.jpg
A red blend from Howell Mountain
TypeAmerican Viticultural Area
Year established1983, amended 1987[1]
CountryUnited States
Part ofNapa Valley AVA
Other regions in Napa Valley AVAAtlas Peak AVA, Calistoga AVA, Chiles Valley AVA, Diamond Mountain District AVA, Los Carneros AVA, Mt. Veeder AVA, Coombsville AVA, Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley AVA, Oakville AVA, Rutherford AVA, Spring Mountain District AVA, St. Helena AVA, Stags Leap District AVA, Wild Horse Valley AVA, Yountville AVA
Total area14,000 acres (57 km2)[2]
Size of planted vineyards600 acres (2 km2)[2]
Varietals producedCabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Grenache, Malbec, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Petite Sirah, Sauvignon blanc, Zinfandel

The Howell Mountain AVA is an American Viticultural Area located within Napa Valley AVA of California.


The AVA is located in the Howell Mountains within the Vaca Range on the northeast side of Napa Valley around the town of Angwin, and overlooks the town of St. Helena, California. The boundaries of the AVA are dictated by vineyard land located at elevations at least 1,400 feet (430 m).[2]


Prior to Prohibition in the United States, the region was widely known for its Zinfandel but in the mid to late 20th century Cabernet Sauvignon became the dominant grape variety.[3]

Designated an AVA in 1983 due to research predominantly done by Bill Smith formerly of La Jota and later W. H. Smith Wines, Howell Mountain was the first sub-appellation within Napa Valley AVA. Most vineyards in the Howell Mountain AVA are planted between 1,400 feet (430 m) and 2,200 feet (670 m) above sea level, well above the elevations in Napa Valley that are most affected by the cool fog and winds from San Pablo Bay. The mountain does get cool breezes directly from the Pacific Ocean, and the relatively high elevations result in a cooler climate than on the valley floor. The soil in the appellation is volcanic with excellent drainage.[2]


Coordinates: 38°35′N 122°27′W / 38.58°N 122.45°W / 38.58; -122.45[4]

  1. ^ "§ 9.94 Howell Mountain" (Title 27: Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; Part 9 — American Viticultural Areas; Subpart C — Approved American Viticultural Areas). Code of Federal Regulations. Retrieved November 5, 2010.
  2. ^ a b c d "Howell Mountain (AVA): Appellation Profile". Appellation America. 2007. Archived from the original on July 24, 2008. Retrieved October 31, 2007.
  3. ^ Robinson, Jancis; Harding, Julia, eds. (2006). The Oxford Companion to Wine (Third ed.). Oxford University Press. pp. 347, 469, 470. ISBN 0-19-860990-6.
  4. ^ "Who's Who on Howell Mountain". Howell Mountain Vintners & Growers Association. Retrieved Nov 5, 2010.

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