On the east side of Napa Valley is the famed Silverado Trail with over 35 wineries open to visitors. Here are nine wineries within 5 miles of each other in the southern end of the “trail” just north of the city of Napa. We suggest you pick out four or five stops and concentrate on tasting the rich, lushly textured Cabernet Sauvignon and other Bordeaux varietals. Tasting fees here are steep averaging over $10 per person. (Some wineries let two people share one tasting.)
Santa Rita Hills Wine Trail Map
Between the town of Buellton and Lompoc is a lightly visited region producing some spectacular wines from the 1700 acres of vines planted in the region. Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Syrah dominate the small appellation. Wineries in the area include new ventures as well as some of the most well known names in the County.
The scenery is exceptional, the people friendly and there are good tourist facilities in Buellton and in the beautiful small town of Lompoc. Click on the bottle icons to get more winery information.
The Stags Leap District begins seven miles north of the town of Napa, on the Silverado Trail. Its northern boundary is drawn by the Yountville Cross Road with the towering Stags Leap palisades to the east. This is where Cabernet Sauvignon dominates the vineyard landscape making up 80% of the areas 1300 acres of vines. Barely a mile wide and three miles long, the district produces powerful yet graceful classic Napa wines. Here is a sampling of some of the top wineries in the area. Here is a tour that mixes caves tours, sophisticated educational programs and great scenery.
Enjoy art, food and wine in beautiful downtown Los Olivos. Less than an hour north of Santa Barbara is the quaint village of Los Olivos and its eclectic mix of art galleries, restaurants, wine tasting rooms and shops. The town is all of 3 blocks long just off of Highway 146. There are 10 tasting rooms “downtown” with a dozen more within five miles.
Don’t miss a stop at Byron where you can taste wine from one of the area’s top wineries. Sample wines from Byron and IO in a stylish and comfortable tasting salon on Alamo Pintado Avenue.
Rutherford is just north of Oakville and south of St. Helena and has a population of close to 600 in its six square miles. Located at the valley’s widest point, Rutherford’s 3,263 acres of vineyards receive more sun than most other areas with mid-summer temperatures reaching the mid 90’s. Cabernet Sauvignon is king here with 70% of the vineyards planted to the variety with Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Cabernet Franc rounding out the top five. Characteristics of the region include the dusty, berry, allspice and light herbaceous. Some wines exhibit intense cherry, currant and earthy flavors.
Here is a tour that includes a grand estate (Rubicon) popular and fun (ZD), Hip and Organic (Frog’s Leap), up and coming (Alpha Omega), food and wine (Peju), family run (Raymond) and best self-guided tour (St. Supery).
Within the foothills of California’s Central Coast rests the picturesque Santa Maria Valley. The area has over a dozen wineries with unique and interesting visitor facilities. Enjoy lovely scenery and sample award-winning wines including Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.
See Santa Maria Valley Wine Country for more information.
Just a couple of miles east from downtown San Luis Obispo is the Edna Valley where large tracks of premium vineyards blanket the gentle rolling hills. Pinot Noir and Chardonnay dominate the vineyard landscape along with recently planted Rhone varieties. This tour covers less than seven miles starting at Talley’s Hacienda style visitor’s center, where you can taste excellent Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling with great views of the vineyards.
Continue on heading toward San Luis Obispo and be sure not to miss the newest winery in the area, Autry Cellars.
Let winemaker/owner Steve Autry pour you through his Malbec, Tempranillo, Sangiovese, Cabernet Franc and his other six wines.
Visit six wine tasting stops starting at the historic school house of Salisbury Vineyards and ending at Morovino just a few steps from the beach. In between you will enjoy the wines of Kelsey Vineyards & Winery, Alapay Winery, Wood Winery and the Avila Wine & Roasting Company. These wineries and tasting rooms are all within 5 minutes of each other.
For more to do in Avila Beach check out Visit Avila Beach.com.
Morovino Winery – Wine, food, family and friends is the philosophy at this lively Avila Beach tasting room. Try their Italian varietals and their Syrah & Petite Syrah blend – Tango.
Click on bottle images for winery name and address. Click though to the winery profile for tasting room hours, wine types, amenities, and winery reviews.
Follow the wine and gastronomic journeys of Miles and Jack within the patchwork of microclimates that is Santa Barbara County. Its varied terrains, small wine villages, and rolling rural hills makes a great movie location and a great place to tour the wine country.
The region has been making wine for years and now is home to over 100 wineries. The modern era of grape and wine production started here in the 1960’s and grew dramatically over the last decade.
Beautiful resort style wineries can be discovered adjacent to small boutique operations. Read More
The Pinot is great here….and so is the Merlot!
You don’t have to give up great wine and great wine tasting experiences on this Urban Wine Trail. Stay in close to town and treat yourself to some fine San Luis Obispo County wines within the concrete jungles and business parks.
A small artisan winery not to miss is Autry Cellars. Steve Autry who has been making wines for years has just opened up his shop for tasting. Two barrels and some wood planks tucked back in the warren of his urban winery is all it takes for him to show his dozen of premium wines, including lesser known varietals, Malbec, Sangiovese, Cabernet Franc and Tempranillo.
The three San Luis Obispo wineries are within a couple miles of each other and Pismo Beach Winery is just a quick drive to the coast. Enjoy!
The picturesque seaside town of Morro Bay has lots to offer visitors. The estuary is a draw for bird lovers, kayakers, fisherman, and those just looking for a peaceful place to experience. The bayside Embarcadero is home to unique restaurants, shops and galleries. Stroll out along the bay to Morro Rock on the city’s new boardwalk, watch the surfers, check out the fishing fleet or walk along the miles of wide open beach.
There are four tasting rooms in, or close by this historic fishing village. The regions most celebrated wines include Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. The area has also developed a reputation for Rhone and Italian varietals
Check out these local tasting rooms who offer excellent wines for everybody’s taste. Be sure to try Harmony Cellars’ gold medal Pinot Noir, Chardonnay & Zinfandel.
Extensive winery information, tasting room hours, fees and wine types can be found by clicking through on the wine labels below or on the wine bottles. Enjoy your tour!
This Paso Robles tour is for lovers of those rich inky reds where the wines are not afraid of to be assertive with complex flavors, oak bouquets and fruit forward taste. (For those along for the ride there are also other wines to try including those white ones made without their skins.) Also included is a lunch stop at the fine Italian restaurant Buona Tavola in Paso Robles.
Saddle up for this Rhone wine tour without having to ride more than a few miles from town. Here is a tour of wineries, big & small, that all specialize in the grape varieties of the Rhone valley in southern France. Viognier, Syrah, Roussanne, Mourvedre, and some great blends can be found on this trail.
Be sure not to miss Clautiere Vineyards for a wine tasting experience you will not soon forget!
For those looking for a off the beaten path tour check out this trip that will take you to the more remote areas of the region. Its not that these wineries are all that far off or distant from each other, they just seem like it due to their winemaking style, facilities, and personality. From horse farms, to grassy concert venues, to creek-side picnicking, these stops also provide good wine lists and plenty to do.
Visit a tasting room at no cost with the CWA Taste for Free Wine Maps.
Many growers strive to protect the resources valuable to their farms and our communities. The Central Coast Vineyard Team, a network of 300 local farmers working on resource conservation, has certified vineyards that have invested in the sustainable vineyard program. Here is a local tour of vineyards and wineries that have been certified under the Sustainability in Practices (SIP) program.