Allegedly, Italian immigrants brought Charbono vines here in the late 1800s thinking they were Barbera. It was bottled as Barbera by Inglenook Winery and even won several medals as Barbera. Eventually, DNA testing done by Professor Carole Meredith of UC Davis proved that Charbono is the French variety Corbeau, aka Charbonneau. Charbono wine is only produced in California, adding to its exclusive appeal. Now there are only 80 acres of Charbono planted in California, half of which are in Calistoga. Calistoga is a sweet spot for Charbono, and most of the older vineyards are there. Today only 16 wineries produce Charbono; with Summers Estate Wines holding the title of Charbono King for producing the largest amount of this special wine annually - about 1500 cases. A lovely wine of bold color and bright fruit.
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