There were a number of new viticultural areas, commonly referred to as AVAs, approved by the TTB late this year, as well as an expansion of certain AVAs and several new proposed areas for which comments are due in early 2012. A summary on the latest activity is below. The TTB designates viticultural areas in order to allow vintners to more precisely describe the origins of their wines and so that consumers may make purchasing decisions with such specific origination information in mind.
Expanded Areas Effective December 16, 2011
Russian River Valley (California) – The Russian River Valley AVA, located in Sonoma County, California, was expanded by 14,044 acres.
Northern Sonoma (California) – The Northern Sonoma AVA, also located in Sonoma County, California, was expanded by 44,244 acres.
New Viticultural Areas Effective January 13, 2012
Coombsville (California) – The Coombsville AVA in Napa County, California covers 11,075 acres. The area is within the Napa Valley and North Coast viticultural areas. The Coombsville AVA is nearly identical to the previously proposed Tulocay AVA, which the TTB withdrew from consideration in June 2008.
Fort Ross-Seaview (California) – The Fort Ross-Seaview AVA in Sonoma County, California embodies 27,500 acres. The area is within the Sonoma Coast viticultural area, which in turn is within the North Coast viticultural area.
Naches Heights (Washington) – The Naches Heights AVA in Yakima County, Washington covers 13,254 acres. The Naches Heights AVA is within the Columbia Valley viticultural area located mainly in central and southern Washington, although a small portion of northern Oregon is also included within the Columbia Valley AVA.
New Proposed Viticultural Areas
Inwood Valley (California) – The TTB has proposed creating a 28,298-acre Inwood Valley AVA in Shasta County, California. Comments on the proposal must be received by February 3, 2012.
Middleburg Virginia (Virginia) – The TTB has proposed creating a 198-square mile Middleburg Virginia AVA located in the northern Virginia counties of Loudoun and Fauquier. Comments on the proposal must be received by January 9, 2012.
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