Day One Itinerary
Start your day in Santa Maria Valley’s Old Town Orcutt. The charming, walkable East Clark street is the perfect starting point to your day of tasting. You’ll enjoy breakfast at Kay’s Country Kitchen. Try a local’s favorite, the Santa Maria Style tri-tip and eggs.
Then, head to Zaca Mesa to kick off your day of Santa Maria Valley wine tasting. Zaca Mesa 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
You can purchase a ticket to ride the Santa Maria Valley 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. The trolley route takes an hour, allowing riders to step on and step off at your leisure.
The first vineyard stop 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 Pino Noir, Syrah and Chardonnay.
Santa Maria Valley’s cool growing environment coupled with Cottonwood’s hands off approach to winemaking produces age-worthy wines similar to what you would find with most French Burgundies.
Your last Trolley 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.