Malibu-Newton Canyon Wine Tasting

What an excruciating existence it must be, running a winery in Malibu. (Cielo Farms)
What an excruciating existence it must be, running a winery in Malibu. (Cielo Farms)

So I thought only Europe had “Appellation d’origine contrôlée” or “Indicazioni Geografica Tipica”–legally defined & demarcated areas where specifically-named wines are grown–but I guess the US has them too. D’oh! I can’t believe *I* didn’t know that. And I called myself a wine snob. If you’d like to sample wines from the uber-local “American Viticultural Area” known as the “Malibu-Newton Canyon,” Pourtal in Malibu is hosting a month-long extravaganza of  local hoity-toity booze. While you may have to jostle a few Malibuian boob jobs & facelifts to get over to their pouring station, it could be worth it just to develop a taste for the terroir.

My curiousity piqued about these local wine-growing regions (like, who the hell owns that little winery in the Sepulveda Pass that’s only visible from the Getty tram? What region is that?), I read up on these areas a little more. Looks like you can get even more specific with an AVA called “Saddle Rock Malibu“–you have to read the way these legally-binding boundaries are written up. It’s nuts. The map geek in me wants to walk all the “unnamed, unimproved road[s] that meander”. Sounds like a metaphor for life, eh? Perhaps the only solution is some of that local vino.

Click through to read some of these geek-tastic descriptions of the Malibu area’s wine regions. For info on Pourtal’s local wine tastings, go here. They include Semler & Saddlerock, Cielo, Rosenthal, Hoyt, Malibu Sanity, Malibu Vineyards and Griffin Family Vineyards.

[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 27, Volume 1]
[Revised as of January 1, 2008]
From the U.S. Government Printing Office via GPO Access
[CITE: 27CFR9.152]

[Page 231-232]

            TITLE 27--ALCOHOL, TOBACCO PRODUCTS AND FIREARMS

 CHAPTER I--ALCOHOL AND TOBACCO TAX AND TRADE BUREAU, DEPARTMENT OF THE
                                TREASURY

PART 9_AMERICAN VITICULTURAL AREAS--Table of Contents

             Subpart C_Approved American Viticultural Areas

Sec.  9.152  Malibu-Newton Canyon.

    (a) Name. The name of the viticultural area described in this
petition is ``Malibu-Newton Canyon.''
    (b) Approved maps. The appropriate map for determining the boundary
of the Malibu-Newton Canyon viticultural area is the U.S.G.S. map,
``Point Dume Quadrangle, California'' (7.5 Minute Series 1:24,000
Topographic map, photorevised 1981).
    (c) Boundary. The Malibu-Newton Canyon viticultural area is located
in Los Angeles County, California. The boundary is as follows:
    (1) Beginning at the intersection of the Newton Canyon creek (lowest
elevation) and an unnamed medium duty road referred to by the petitioner
as Kanan Dume Road at the boundary of section 13 and 18 on the U.S.G.S.
map ``Point Dume Quadrangle.''
    (2) Then south along Kanan Dume Road to the point where an unnamed,
unimproved dirt road referred to by the petitioner as Ramerez Mountain
Way crosses over Kanan Dume Road at the tunnel in the northwest corner
of section 19.
    (3) Then east along Ramerez Mountain Way, following the southern
ridgeline of Newton Canyon, to Latigo Canyon Road in the southwest
corner of section 17.
    (4) Then south along Latigo Canyon Road to an unnamed, unimproved
dirt road referred to by the petitioner as Newton Mountain Way at the
southern boundary of section 17.
    (5) Then northeast along Newton Mountain Way, following the
southeastern ridgeline of Newton Canyon, to

[[Page 232]]

an unnamed, unimproved dirt road referred to by the petitioner as Castro
Mountain Way in section 16.
    (6) Then west along Castro Mountain Way, past Castro Peak, following
the northern ridgeline of Newton Canyon to Latigo Canyon Road in section
18.
    (7) Then southwest along the natural ridgeline of Newton Canyon to
the intersection of Kanan Dume Road and the 1,600 foot contour line in
the southeastern portion of section 13.
    (8) Then southeasterly along Kanan Dume Road to the beginning point.

[T.D. ATF-375, 61 FR 29952, June 13, 1996]

--------------------------
[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 27, Volume 1]
[Revised as of January 1, 2008]
From the U.S. Government Printing Office via GPO Access
[CITE: 27CFR9.203]

[Page 282-283]

            TITLE 27--ALCOHOL, TOBACCO PRODUCTS AND FIREARMS

 CHAPTER I--ALCOHOL AND TOBACCO TAX AND TRADE BUREAU, DEPARTMENT OF THE
                                TREASURY

PART 9_AMERICAN VITICULTURAL AREAS--Table of Contents

             Subpart C_Approved American Viticultural Areas

Sec.  9.203  Saddle Rock-Malibu.

    (a) Name. The name of the viticultural area described in this
section is ``Saddle Rock-Malibu''. For purposes of part 4 of this
chapter, ``Saddle Rock-Malibu'' is a term of viticultural significance.
    (b) Approved Map. The following United States Geological Survey,
1:24,000 scale, topographic map is used to determine the boundary of the
Saddle Rock-Malibu viticultural area: Point Dume Quadrangle California,
7.5-Minute Series (Orthophotoquad), 1995.
    (c) Boundary. The Saddle Rock-Malibu viticultural area is located in
Los Angeles County, California. The boundary of the Saddle Rock-Malibu
viticultural area is as described below:
    (1) The beginning point is on the Point Dume map at the intersection
of Decker Road and Mulholland Highway, section 3, T1S/R19W;
    (2) From the beginning point, proceed north-northeast along Decker
Road approximately 0.7 mile to its intersection with the southern
boundary of the El Conejo land grant, section 3, T1S/R19W; then
    (3) Proceed straight east-southeast along the El Conejo land grant
boundary line approximately 0.4 mile to the point where the land grant
boundary line changes direction to the northeast, section 2, T1S/R19W;
then
    (4) Proceed straight northeast for approximately 0.5 mile along the
El Conejo land grant boundary line to its second intersection with the
1,700-foot contour line in section 2, T1S/R19W; then
    (5) Proceed southeasterly along the meandering 1,700-foot contour
line, crossing the R19W/R18W range line near the southwest corner of
section 6, T1S/R18W, and continue along the 1,700-foot contour line to
its intersection with Kanan Road near the southwest corner of section 6,
T1S/R18W; then
    (6) Proceed south along Kanan Road approximately 0.35 mile to its
intersection with the 1,800-foot contour line (very near the
intersection of Kanan Road and an unnamed unimproved road), section 7,
T1S/R18W; then
    (7) Proceed southeasterly along the meandering 1,800-foot contour
line to a point approximately 200 feet due north of the intersection of
Mulholland Highway and two unnamed, unimproved roads near the center of
section 7, T1S/R18W, and, from that point, proceed due south in a
straight line to the

[[Page 283]]

intersection of Mulholland Highway and the two unnamed, unimproved
roads, section 7, T1S/R18W; then
    (8) Following the eastern-most unimproved road, proceed southerly
along the meandering unimproved road, passing to the west of a 2,054-
foot peak, and continue to the road's intersection with another unnamed,
unimproved road immediately south of the section 18 north boundary line
and due east of a 2,448-foot peak, section 18, T1S/R18W; then
    (9) Proceed southwesterly along the unnamed, unimproved road to its
intersection with the Latigo Canyon Road, just east of BM 2125, section
18, T1S/R18W; then
    (10) Proceed northerly then westerly along Latigo Canyon Road to its
intersection with Kanan Road very near the southeast corner of section
12, T1S/R19W; then
    (11) Proceed south along Kanan Road for approximately 0.6 mile to
its intersection with the 1,700-foot contour line, located immediately
south of the four-way intersection of two unnamed, unimproved roads and
Kanan Road, section 13, T1S/R19W; then
    (12) Proceed 1.5 miles generally west and northwest along the
unnamed, unimproved road that meanders westerly, crossing over several
intermittent streams, and continues through Zuma Canyon to its
intersection with Encinal Canyon Road at about the 1,806-foot elevation
mark, section 11, T1S/R19W; then
    (13) Crossing Encinal Canyon Road, proceed northwesterly along the
unnamed, unimproved road, which becomes a trail, and continue northerly
to the trail's intersection with the 1,900-foot contour line, near the
center of section 11, T1S/R19W; then
    (14) Proceed northwesterly along the meandering 1,900-foot contour
line, circling to the west of the 2,189-foot peak in section 11, to the
contour line's intersection with Mulholland Highway at the northern
boundary of section 11, T1S/R19W; then
    (15) Proceed westerly about 0.8 mile on Mulholland Highway and
return to the beginning point.

[T.D. TTB-52, 71 FR 40400, July 17, 2006]

4 Replies to “Malibu-Newton Canyon Wine Tasting”

  1. What I want to know is, what’s the region for the vineyard on the flank of Cahuenga Peak by the Hollywood sign?

Comments are closed.