Red Wines

Red Wines

Norman Vineyards

Norman Vineyards was established in 1971 when Art and Lei Norman realized their dream of growing grapes and making wine. Art, a true pioneer, was spurred on by the memories of his father and grandfather making wine in the family home. They spent weekends scouting for the perfect site before settling on their Adelaida site in Paso Robles. Art and Lei fine-tuned their viticultural skills over they years supplying highly sought after grapes to several wineries.

Brown Estates

We had four distinct wines and it was so difficult to choose which ones to go home with! We bought 2 and will be joing their wine club for sure. The grounds were so beautiful ~ such rich history. This small family owned winery is a hidden treasure! The old barn, the cave and the tasting room were so beautiful. I strongly recommend this as your first stop..... it will be hard to find anything better.

Caymus Vineyards

They offer both a bar-tasting with no reservation needed, or a reservation-only ($30) educational sit-down tasting in a private room with 6-10 individuals. As far as wines go I have never had a bad wine at Caymus' tasting room. The Wagner family has created some wonderful wines. Although the tasting room is quite small the wines are wonderful as well as the staff.

Bonny Doon Vineyards

Bonnie Dune Vinyards began with the foolish attempt to replicate burgundy in California. Randall Graham realized early on that he would have far more success, creating more distinctive and original wines working with Rhone varieties in the central coast of California.

William Harrison Wines

Willliam Harrison Winery is full of history, with a family heritage of wine making that goes back hundreds of years starting in Italy with a move to California in the early 1900s. The tasting room is quaint with some historical bottles and articles on display for you to enjoy. The wines here are solid, well balanced with nice structure. A favorite was the Estate Cabernet Franc, great finish with some some soft tannins; it was delicious.
Stop by for a piece of wine history and to enjoy some real good wine.

Beu Vigne Vineyards

We were told about this place from another tasting room; it was said we just have to try it so we did! Oscar was a very gracious host and told us all kinds of facts about the wines, which were great. We ended up with the barrel chaser, nice! A bit pricey for tastings, about $20 for 4, but worth it especially if you buy a bottle. A must try for beginners and winos alike.

Martin Ranch Winery

This winery is fun! They're only open the third weekend of the month. Tucked away down Redwood Retreat Road about 3.5 miles from Watsonville Road, the drive to get here is truly spectacular.

They are only open the third weekend of each month and passport weekends. They ask that you sign in and they then give you name tags with your first name on it. The staff was friendly and the owners Therese and Dan were walking around greeting people.

Dan and Therese Martin clearly have a passion for making great wine. They have scores of awards for their wine but that's not what they lead with. Their tasting room is welcoming and intimate. The vibe is comfortable and engaging.

Martin Ranch produces a variety of wines from Chardonnay to Cab Franc, Sauvignon Blanc to Sangiovese.

Terra Valentine

Just ten minutes up from Highway 29 and you have the view - of Napa Valley. Then, if you book a tasting tour, instead of standing at a bar, or a cold cellar, you will be seated in a room streaming with sunshine. From there a generous sampling of their current releases will be poured, alongside a nice place of cheese, nuts and chocolate. Time to consider the tasting...and what you will buy to have at home. I know that one of my Cabernet favorites.

Rexford Wines

Rexford Winery handcrafts wines in small lots using grapes from select local vineyards. Their focus on single-vineyard Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Merlot, and other premium varieties. Rexford wines accurately reflect the varietal characteristics of the grapes and the unique microclimates and soils of the vineyards from which they come. Visitors are welcome at the winery located on the west side of Santa Cruz. The winery is open for tasting and sales Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and by appointment.

NOTE: Rexford Winery is the new name for Hillcrest Terrace Winery.

Rexford is a very small-scale operation that offers high quality wines. Sauvignon Blanc ($19), a Pinot Noir from Monterey ($29) and a Cab Sauv from Carmel Valley ($32). All were delicious and well made. We chatted with the winemaker. He teaches astro-physics at UCSC and decided to break into the commercial wine business after making some good homemade batches. He was knowledgeable and friendly.

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