Located just southwest of Sacramento, Clarksburg is blessed with warm days that reach into the mid-90s, while soft ocean breezes sneak into the valley at night, cooling it to around 50°F. The AVA has long been known for producing vegetables and grains, and in the 1960s vines were planted across the appellation. Today, not many wine labels carry the Clarksburg name, because most of the grapes are harvested and shipped to Napa and Sonoma wineries.
Many vineyards have irrigation in place but keep the water application low because Clarksburg has a high water table that feeds the vines whose roots have traveled deep into the soil. The soil composition tends to be poorly drained clay and loam that is rich in minerals. Clarksburg is noted for producing honeyed Chenin Blanc and provides almost ideal conditions for growing Petite Sirah.
Clarksburg has one sub-appellation, Merritt Island.