Santa Maria Valley
What’s up with this, Irene? This isn’t Paso Robles!!
Yeah, I know. It’s still the Central Coast and of course has beautiful wineries and wines. Besides, as I said in the first post on this series, I will try to include as many Central Coast wine trails as I can. Whether or not I’m nuts for doing so is a discussion for another post.
About three or so years ago, Don & Mark (two guys whom I love as much as I’d love brothers if I had any), and John & Katie and I did a four-day tour of the entire Central Coast, beginning with Paso Robles and ending in Santa Barbara. We tasted – really just tasted because driving was involved – throughout the region and gained an incredible respect for the wines there. There are some wineries that stood out and they will be destination points when I go on my vacation in May. The reason I chose the Santa Maria Valley first is due to the fact that many of the Paso Robles wineries that bottle Pinot Noir and Chardonnay often source their grapes from Santa Maria.
There are about twenty-ish wineries here and I’ve visited visited four of them. (Note: Cambria can be quite the party!) The next time you head towards the Central Coast, don’t hesitate to make a side trip and go through some of the valleys. You won’t regret it and you’ll taste wines that will make you take a step back (The Wineaux Guy™’s term for a really good wine that stuns you).
In spite of the attractiveness of the website, I did run into some problems. Because I visit Paso Robles on a regular basis but not the rest of the Central Coast region, I discovered that there may be issues with a couple of wineries. Addamo Estate Vineyards, which appears on the map of the Santa Maria Valley web page, has a dead website and no amount of googling could find a live link. So I left that one off of the table below. The McKeon-Phillips Winery just closed in December. So sad. I found a couple of apparently new wineries that were mentioned in a very recent article, but hadn’t made it onto any maps – at least none that I could find.
If you have more experience in the region and I have missed someone, please let me know!
Santa Maria Valley