North Central Coast: Monterey-Carmel, Mt. Harlan, Chalone, Santa Lucia Highlands, Arroyo Seco

These wineries are spread over a vast region but are relatively easy to locate. Arm yourself with good maps or GPS.

Recommended Wineries

Bernardus Vineyards & Winery
Address5 W Carmel Valley Rd., Carmel Valley
Tasting RoomOpen daily 11-5.
Production50,000 cases
WinemakerDean DeKorth
OwnerBen Pon
Comments200 acres owned, 80 acres leased. Established in 1990.
PoP coverageBernardus Vineyards & Winery
Calera Wine Co.
Address11300 Cienega Rd,
Tasting RoomTasting and tours by appointment. Call for directions.
Production30,000 cases of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Viognier, Aligote.
WinemakerJosh Jensen
OwnerJosh Jensen
CommentsAll of the wines from Calera come from estate vineyards except the Central Coast bottlings. A California heritage winery (est. 1976). Age worthy and complex Pinot Noirs of great interest. 75 acres owned.
PoP coverageCalera Wine Co.
Chalone Vineyards
AddressState 146 E at Stonewall Canyon Rd., 9 miles east of Soledad.
Tasting RoomOpen Saturday and Sunday 11:30-5; Monday through Friday by appointment.
Production50,000 cases
WinemakerDan Karlsen
OwnerDiego Chateau & Estate Wines
CommentsPicnic area. Founded in 1960. 307 acres owned, 26 acres leased.
Cima Collina
Address3344 Paul Davis Dr., #6, Marina, California.
Tasting RoomCima Collina Art Gallery & Wine Tasting Bar in Carmel-by-the-Sea in the Paseo Courtyard, open Thursday through Monday 11-6.
Production4,000 cases of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Cabernet blends.
WinemakerAnnette Hoff
OwnerRichard Lumpkin
Comments3 acres owned, 20 acres leased. Established in 2004.
PoP coverageCima Collina
Clos La Chance Winery
Address1 Hummingbird Lane, San Martin (foothills of Santa Cruz Mtns.).
Tasting RoomOpen daily 11-5. Picnic area. Cellar tours by appointment ($25).
ProductionMultiple varietal wines including Pinot Noir.
WinemakerStephen Tebb
OwnerBill and Brenda Murphy
CommentsEstablished in 1992 that grew from a small home Chardonnay vineyard. Farms 150 acres. Located at the CordeValle Resort and Golf Course.
PoP coverageClos La Chance
Hahn Estates
Address37700 Foothill Rd., Soledad
Tasting RoomOpen daily 11-4. Picnic area. Tours by appointment.
Production500,000 cases
WinemakerAdam Lazarre
OwnerNicky Hahn
Comments950 acres owned. Est. 1980.
PoP coverageHahn Estates
La Rochelle Winery
Address5443 Tesla Rd., Livermore
Tasting RoomTasting room at 300 Aborn Rd., San Jose open daily 12-5. Tours by appointment. Picnic area.
Production4,000 cases primarily Pinot Noir
WinemakerTom Stultz
OwnerSteven Mirassou
PoP coverageLa Rochelle Winery
Morgan Winery
Address590 Brunken Ave., Salinas
Tasting RoomTours and tasting by appointment.
Production7,000 cases
WinemakerGianni Abate
Comments45 acres owned.
PoP coverageMorgan Winery
Paraiso Vineyards
Address38060 Paraiso Springs Rd., Soledad
Tasting RoomOpen weekdays from 12-4, weekends from 11-5. Scenic picnic area. Tours by appointment.
Production15,000 cases
WinemakerDavid Fleming
OwnerRich Smith (a pioneering winegrower in MontereyCounty)
PoP coverageParaiso Vineyards
Ventana Vineyards
Address2999 Monterey-Salinas Hwy, Monterey
Tasting RoomOpen daily 11-5. Picnic area.
Production25,000 cases
WinemakerReggie Hammond
Comments400 acres owned. Overlooked good source of Pinot Noir established in 1978.
PoP coverageVentana Vineyards
Wrath Wines
Address35801 Foothill Rd, Soledad
Tasting RoomTasting rooms open daily 11-6 at Soledad address (831-659-3215) and in Carmel Valley at 19 E Carmel Valley Rd (831-659-7322).
Production10,000 cases
WinemakerSabrine Rodems, Byron Kosuge
OwnerBarbara Lemmon, Michael Thomas
Comments68 acres owned.
PoP coverageWrath Wines

Recommended Lodging

Bernardus Lodge
Address415 Carmel Valley Rd., Carmel Valley
CommentsHigh-end, deluxe accommodations with an outstanding restaurant. Expensive.
Highlands House at Pessagno Winery
Address1645 River Road, Salinas
CommentsLocated on Pessagno Winery Estate, a perfect location for exploring Santa Lucia Highlands and Monterey County wine country.
PoP coveragePessagno Winery
Inn at the Pinnacles
Address32025 Stonewall Canyon Rd., Soledad
CommentsB&B with six rooms. Weekends only.
Las Laureles Lodge
Address313 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel Valley
CommentsRanch house style historic property that is reasonably priced, but a bit rustic. Good restaurant.
Tradewinds Carmel
AddressMission St and Third Ave, Carmel
CommentsA boutique hotel located in the heart of Carmel. Featured in Architectural Digest for its unique fusion of Asian and tropical design. An oasis of calm. 28 luxury rooms, $225-$550 with continental buffet breakfast.

Recommended Restaurants

Bouchee Restaurant & Wine Bar
AddressMission St. at Ocean Ave., Carmel
CommentsFrench Bistro and wine bar/wine store. Local Monterey seafood. Great wine list.
Marinus at Bernardus Lodge
Address415 Carmel Valley Rd, Carmel Valley
CommentsSuperb gourmet restaurant with extensive winelist (Wine Spectator Grand Award). Highly awarded California cuisine of Chef Cal Stamenov.
Montrio Bistro
Address414 Calle Principal, Monterey
CommentsSuperb American bistro.
Restaurant 1833
Address500 Hartnell St., Monterey, CA
CommentsExecutive chef Levi Mezick opened the restaurant in 2011 after cooking in top New York City restaurants including Cafe Boulud and Per Se. Named for the date the historic adobe that houses the restaurant was built, the historic property has been lavishly renovated. The American cuisine is based on local ingredients. Wine list has about 500 labels, about one-third from Monterey County, focusing on small producers and rising stars.
Rio Grill
AddressHwy 1 at Rio Rd. The Crossroads Center, Carmel
CommentsCasual grill but good, compact wine list and and excellent food. One of my favorites.
The Sardine Factory
Address701 Wave St., Monterey
CommentsA Monterey institution for years. Everyone needs to go here at least once. Wine Spectator Grand Award wine list.

Picnic Supplies

Farmer's Markets
Wild Thyme Deli & Cafe
Address445 Reservation Rd., Marina
CommentsCIA-trained chef making sandwiches. Smoke and roast own meats, quality ingredients.

Appellation Websites