Day One Itinerary
Kick off your wine tasting weekend getaway in Santa Maria Valley’s Old Town Orcutt. The charming, walkable East Clark street is the perfect starting point to your day of tasting. Here, you can enjoy breakfast at Kay’s Country Kitchen, voted best breakfast in Northern Santa Barbara County for the last 22 years! Try a local’s favorite, the Santa Maria Style tri-tip and eggs, or take a try at one of their daily specials.
After you’ve fueled up for day one of your wine tasting weekend, head to Zaca Mesa to kick off your day of Santa Maria Valley wine tasting. Zaca Mesa is a family-owned and operated winery and was the first to plant Syrah in Santa Barbara County in 1978. Over the years, the winery has learned that the grape varietals indigenous to the Rhône valley of France prosper in its vineyard
Your day of wine tasting doesn't end there. When in season, you can purchase a ticket to ride the Santa Maria Wine Trolley which is the best way to taste a variety of Santa Maria Valley wines with safe transportation. The trolley makes stops along the Foxen Canyon Wine Trail every Saturday and Sunday from mid-May to mid-October (and sometimes, it runs through November!). The trolley route takes an hour, allowing riders to step on and step off at your leisure. Be sure to check the hours and routes, and get your tickets beforehand.
The next stop on your wine weekend getaway is one of Santa Maria Valley’s most beautiful and renowned wineries, Presqu’ile. At Presqu’ile, you can enjoy delicious wines and sweeping scenic views with even a peek at the ocean on a clear day. Voted a top 10 tasting room in USA Today’s 2018 Reader’s Choice Awards, Presqu’ile focuses on making wines from around the area as well as from their sustainably farmed vineyard. Taste the Santa Maria Valley blend and compare this to the single vineyard designate wines for a true Pinot Noir educational experience.
Next, enjoy boutique crafted wines at Cottonwood Canyon Winery and Vineyard. Cottonwood Canyon’s 78-acre estate specializes in hand-crafted Pinot Noir, Syrah and Chardonnay. The secret to their distinctively different age worthy wines is found in their vineyard and their wine caves. The combination of natural, highly acidic fruits and the caves’ conditions creates long-lived wines that slowly develop over many years, similar to what you would find with most French Burgundies. While visiting, you can taste our perfectly aged varietals while exploring their hand-built wine caves. Cottonwood Canyon Winery and Vineyard is definitely a must-stop during your wine tasting weekend getaway!
Don’t worry, your wine tasting weekend getaway has only just begun! Your next stop will be at Costa de Oro, a vineyard that uses old-world winemaking styles and new-world grape growing methods to make their complex and harmonious Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays. A veteran of the Santa Maria wine industry, winemaker Gary Burk uses the artistry of old world winemaking styles and new world grape growing practices to make wines of character. Try the “CF” Pinot Noir, a smooth expression of the grape with layers of flavors such as spice, earth, and fruit.
By now you’ve worked up an appetite. We like to joke that Santa Maria Valley wine is best paired with jeans (because we really are that laid back here) but truly the best wine pairing is with our legendary barbecue. Check out one of our classic Santa Maria Style barbecue joints like The Swiss, located in Santa Maria, for some finger-licking-good tri-tip and more.