We invite you to come and explore! The Santa Cruz Mountains wine region is nestled in one of the most unique natural environments in the world. With its mountainous terrain, marine and valley influences, varied micro-climates, and diverse soils the Santa Cruz Mountains offers our vintners the ideal place to grow high quality grapes and to produce some of the world’s most distinct and terroir driven wines.
The Santa Cruz Mountains Appellation encompasses more than 850 square miles beginning from San Francisco down the Peninsula to Silicon Valley and Gilroy over to Watsonville, Monterey Bay and back up to Santa Cruz and Half Moon Bay. Due to the size of the Santa Cruz Mountains wine region it is often useful for our visitors to plan their trip by winery hours of operation, sub-regions or by urban winery locations.
P M StaigerP M Staiger
P M STAIGER was established in 1973 on a ridge above Boulder Creek, in the Santa Cruz Mountains. The site had been an early twentieth century vineyard and winery operated by the Jim Locatelli family, but by the time we purchased the land the vines had long since disappeared and only a few large hoops from the old redwood tanks were all that remained of the cellar.
We replanted the vineyard and built a new house and winery, designed by Robert Walker. The varieties planted – Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot,and Cabernet Franc – were determined by the types that had been historically grown successfully with good exposure in the higher elevations of the Santa Cruz Mountains, and, admittedly, our love of the French archetypes of these wines. The Cabernet was planted on a slope that faces almost due south, the Merlot to the west of this where it gets more of the northwest marine influence and so is somewhat cooler, and the Chardonnay on a slope facing southwest. Of equal if not greater importance is the elevation: our vineyards are above one thousand feet which is the boundary between the cold air in the valley and the warmer air in the thermal belts above. Since the vineyards came into full production we have made wine only from our own grapes. Having this one source, which we control down to the smallest detail, has provided an opportunity to perfect wine making to a degree that is rarely possible.
Pelican Ranch WineryPelican Ranch Winery
Pelican Ranch Winery is a small, family owned and operated winery specializing in Rhone and Burgundy style wines from the best vineyards in California. Established in 1997, the winery is located a short distance from Monterey Bay which provides the constant, cool, coastal influence that allows for controlled, slow fermentation. The result is rich, full-flavored, complex wines. Pelican Ranch wines are labeled according to their single-vineyard designation. Production is limited to 100 cases from each vineyard.
Pleasant Valley VineyardsPleasant Valley Vineyards
Welcome to Pleasant Valley Vineyards where we utilize only old world wine making technics and believe that great wine is made from perfect grapes with minimal intervention allowing the fruit to express the essence of wine.
Pleasant Valley Vineyards was established by Craig and Cathy Handley in 1996. Nestled in its own private enclave, our family estate vines surround a cathedral grove of coastal redwoods. There are two petite vineyards of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay planted in select French Dijon clones. The property encompasses a five-acre bowl on the western ridge within Pleasant Valley in Aptos, California, a part of the Santa Cruz Mountains Appellation.
Only a short distance from the Monterey Bay, Pleasant Valley possesses its own unique microclimate of warm days and tempered nights that allows the vines to gradually produce and mature fruit with intense varietal characteristics and complexity. Each vine, and the grape clusters produced, are selectively nurtured, gently hand pruned, hedged, leafed and harvested. Our limited release wines are meticulously handcrafted exclusively from our estate-grown fruit and bottled on-site. Our chardonnay is made in the sur lie style and our Pinot Noir from whole berry fruit. The wines are aged exclusively in small French oak barrels of medium and medium plus toast and held in precise climate controlled chambers.
Pleasant Valley Vineyards also offers other wine varietals from select regions the Santa Cruz Mountains, Amador County, Sonoma Coast and Paso Robles. The grapes that make these non-estate wines are carefully selected for their complex characteristics. The fruit is brought on-site to be processed. All wines are produced in small lots to focus on the quality expected of a Pleasant Valley Vineyards handcrafted wine.
Poetic CellarsPoetic Cellars
Poetic Cellars is located on 36 acres in the beautiful Santa Cruz Mountains overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The temperate climate makes it an ideal location for growing many of the grapes contained in our wines. The cooling ocean air ensures that the grapes have a long growing season and ripen to perfection.
Portola VineyardsPortola Vineyards
We are a community-supported micro-winery focused on making hand-crafted Pinot Noirs. Since 2005, we have been producing award-winning wines from our estate vineyard in Portola Valley.
We strive to make outstanding vintages that showcase the taste of the mid-Peninsula foothills. We practice organic and ecologically balanced farming techniques that improve rather than degrade the land.
Above all, we seek to create connections — to allow people in our community to know their vintner, to work the vines that produce their wine, and to come together with neighbors in the beauty of the foothills.