The Golden State is responsible for producing 81% of all the wine made in America, and ranks fourth worldwide in wine production, trailing only France, Italy and Spain. California benefits from a Mediterranean-like climate defined by warm, dry, sunny summers and mild, wet winters. These conditions help wine grapes grow steadily during a long, relatively stress-free season between April and October. The influence of the Pacific Ocean and several other significant mountain ranges cannot be overstated. Many of the most important wine regions in California, from Napa and Sonoma to Santa Barbara and Paso Robles, benefit in myriad ways from the natural cooling of coastal winds, fog and moisture. The comfortable temperatures help grapes retain acidity, which in turn keeps the resulting wines fresh and balanced instead of flabby and heavy on the palate.