The Santa Clara Valley AVA was once acres and acres of orchards and vineyards, but is now blocks and blocks of homes, wooded business parks, and high-tech industries. A few large wineries still operate here, but they receive their fruit from other regions. The official AVA includes the southern end of Alameda County around Pleasanton, plus the vineyard areas in the Santa Clara Valley around Gilroy, Hecker Pass and Morgan Hill. There are 25 wineries in the area, and Chardonnay is the dominant grape, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Zinfandel.
The Santa Clara AVA also encompasses the Pacheco Pass AVA and the San Ysidro AVA. The Pacheco Pass AVA is along Highway 152, with a couple of wineries pouring fruit and grape wines. The San Ysidro AVA is located in the cooler area southeast of Gilroy and grows Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon, but has no wineries.↑ Less