Santa Cruz Mountains

The wineries of the Santa Cruz Mountains are scattered over a wide region. A good map, four wheel drive, and patience are required. Your GPS and cell phone may not work in several areas. Allow adequate driving time.

Recommended Wineries

Alfaro Family Vineyards & Winery
Address496 Hames Rd, Corralitos
Tasting RoomBy appointment
Production6,000 cases of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
WinemakerRichard Alfaro
OwnerRichard Alfaro
PoP coverageAlfaro Family Vineyards & Winery
Burrell School Vineyards
Address24060 Summit Rd., Los Gatos
Tasting RoomOpen Thursday through Sunday 11-5.
Production5,000 cases of multiple varietals
WinemakerDavid Moulton
OwnerDavid and Anne Moulton
CommentsHistoric school house on property. Deck with view of the vineyards perfect for picnics. Ask to see David's collection of old tractors.
PoP coverageBurrell School
Hallcrest Vineyards
Address379 Felton Empire Rd., Felton
Tasting RoomOpen daily 12-5 on a historic property.
Production20,000 cases of several varietals
WinemakerJohn Schumacher
OwnerJohn Schumacher
PoP coverageHallcrest Vineyards
Loma Prieta Winery
Address26985 Loma Prieta Way, Los Gatos
Tasting RoomTuscan-styled winery and tasting room - call for hours.
ProductionSmall lots of estate and sourced Pinot Noir and Pinotage.
WinemakerPaul Kemp
OwnerPaul and Amy Kemp
Comments3 acre estate vineyard. One of the highest vineyards in the Santa Cruz Mountains with panoramic views of the Monterey Bay. Call for driving directions.
PoP coverageLoma Prieta
Santa Cruz Mountains Vineyard
AddressNear Boulder Creek, Felton.
Tasting RoomOpen most weekends in Santa Cruz at 334-A Ingalls St. (431-426-6209).
Production3,000 cases of multiple varietal wines including Pinot Noir.
WinemakerJeff Emery
OwnerJeff Emery
CommentsHistoric winery, established in 1975.
PoP coverageSanta Cruz Mountain Vineyard
Silver Mountain Vineyards & Sonnet Wines
AddressSilver Mountain Drive
Tasting RoomSurf City Tasting Room at Surf City Vintners in Santa Cruz at 402 Ingalls St., Ste. 29, open Thursday through Sunday 12-5.
ProductionPinot Noir, Chardonnay, Bordeaux blend.
WinemakerJerold O'Brien and Anthony Craig (consulting for Silver Mountain, the winemaker for Sonnet Wines).
OwnerJerold O'Brien
CommentsThe Silver Mountain property has panaromic views and spectacular sunsets. Open by appointment. Tony Craig crafts wine under his Sonnet label at Silver Mountain Vineyards.
PoP coverageSilver Mountain Vineyards
Thomas Fogarty Winery
Address19501 Skyline Blvd., Woodside
Tasting RoomOpen Thursday through Sunday 11-5 overlooking the Santa Clara Valley.
Production15,000 cases
WinemakerMichael Martella
OwnerThomas Fogarty, M.D.
CommentsEstablished in 1981.
PoP coverageThomas Fogarty Winery
Windy Oaks Estate Vineyards & Winery
Address380 Sweetwood Way, Corralitos
Tasting RoomBy appointment
Production2,000 cases of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay
WinemakerJim Schultze
OwnerJim and Judy Schultze
CommentsOne of the very best producers in this appellation, established in 1996.
PoP coverageWindy Oaks Estate Vineyards & Winery

Recommended Lodging

Babbling Brook Inn
Address1025 Laurel St., Santa Cruz
CommentsCascading brook and waterfall amidst redwood trees.
Dream Inn
Address175 West Cliff Dr., Santa Cruz
CommentsBoutique Joie de Vivre hotel on a sandy beach a few blocks from Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Every room has an ocean view. This was formerly a 69s beachfront motel and the renovation in 2008 has retained the 60s era look, but with a touch of chic luxury. This is a property that will never be duplicated as it sits directly on the beach. 163 guestrooms and suites face the ocean are brightly decorated. Heated pool. Aquarius restaurant featuring organic, sustainable fish.
Hotel Los Gatos
Address210 E Main St., Los Gatos
CommentsVery nice hotel in the town of Los Gatos. A highly touted Greek restaurant is inside the hotel. Close to all wineries. Breakfast is included in the rate.
Hotel Paradox
Address611 Ocean Street, Santa Cruz
CommentsA unique, upscale, boutique hotel experience exploring an urban forest setting inside a beach town. Designed by designers Orlando Diaz-Azcuy Design Associates from San Francisco. Solaire Restaurant + Bar is inside. 162 rooms and 8 suites with designer touches and well-appointed amenities.
Inn at Depot Hill
Address250 Monterey Ave., Capitola
CommentsA former Southern Pacific railroad depot. Highly recommended.
West Cliff Inn
Address174 W Cliff Dr., Santa Cruz
CommentsThree story Victorian on a bluff across the street from the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

Recommended Restaurants

Gabriella Café
Address910 Cedar St., Santa Cruz
CommentsRomantic yellow cottage with outstanding California cuisine using local ingredients. Good wine list. My fav in Santa Cruz.
Gayles Bakery & Rosticceria
Address504 Bay Ave, Capitola
CommentsEat in or take out for picnics.
La Posta
Address538 Seabright Ave, Santa Cruz
CommentsSophisticated Italian eatery with house made pastas. Sunday prix fixe meals from a particular place.
La Posta
Address538 Seabright Ave, Santa Cruz
Address320 Village Ln, Los Gatos
CommentsHighly-rated by Michelin and Zagat, gourmet Cal/French cuisine.
Penny Ice Creamery
CommentsThree locations in Santa Cruz with killer ice cream in unusual flavors and life-changing donut holes (order extra).
Address1750 Wharf Rd, Capitola
CommentsHillside and creek side location set in a residential part of town. Phenomenal wine list including many Santa Cruz Mountains wines. A very unique restaurant that has stood the test of time and is an institution in the Santa Cruz Mountains.
Solaire Restaurant + Bar
Address611 Ocean Street, Santa Cruz
CommentsWithin the new Hotel Paradox, this sleek, modern setting offers American farm-to-table inspired dishes. Executive Chef Ross McKee was most recently the Chef de Cuisine at Aquarius at the Dream Inn in Santa Cruz and prior, the Executive Chef at Shadowbrook Restaurant in Capitola.
Tacos Morenos
Address1053 Water St., Santa Cruz
CommentsBoony Doon's Randall Grahm swears by this place for simple, good, and cheap tacos. I agree.
The Plumed Horse
Address14555 Big Basin Way, Saratoga
CommentsNew owners and chef in 2007 (chef is Peter Armellino, formerly of San Francisco's Aqua) with a contemporary redo of the restaurant's interior. Cal/ French cuisine. Extensive wine list. Expensive but very stylish.

Recommended Wine Stores

Address105 Walnut Ave, downtown Santa Cruz
CommentsCombination restaurant, wine bar and wine shop. Soif means thirst in French.
Address725 Front Street, Santa Cruz
CommentsExtensive selection of Santa Cruz Mountains wines. Tasting bar and tasting events.

Appellation Websites