Santa Maria Valley Wine

The Santa Maria Valley AVA is located in the north of Santa Barbara County in California’s Central Coast. A portion of it also lies within San Luis Obispo County, with the Cuyama River marking its divide from Santa Barbara. The wide, open valley benefits from cool air and fog that comes in from the Pacific Ocean, contributing to moderate temperatures and a long growing season to balance out grape structures.

Santa Maria Valley shares its grape-growing history with many other nearby regions: Franciscan missionaries planted vineyards for ceremonial wine in the 1800s, immigrants and settlers expanded the industry into the 20th century, Phylloxera and Prohibition leveled it and other crops grew in the place of wine grapes. 
 
Wine-makers saw potential in the region in the 1960s and starting replanting and rejuvinating the industry once again. Today, Santa Maria Valley is home to many well-regarded vineyards, with Pinot Noir, Syrah (which likes the higher elevations of some parts of Read more »

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Popular wines made in Santa Maria Valley under $20

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Varietals Produced in Santa Maria Valley View all

  • Pinot Blanc

    History of the grape: Pinot Blanc was first grown in Burgundy and Champagne, France, and can be traced by some source...

  • Viognier

    History of the grape: Viognier is thought to be an indigenous grape of Croatia that was brought to the Rhone in Franc...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

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Santa Maria Valley on Snooth

  • Herman Story 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by 453542Mr Dolce 453542 Mr Dolce


  • The Ojai Vineyard Bien Nacido Pinot Noir 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Very nice wine. Fruit flavor is of strawberry. Very nice tartness. Maybe a bit of clove spiciness. (?) Fairly light-bodied. I can see the elegance that Pinot Noir fans seem to seek in this wine. Velvety smooth. Nothing smacks you in the face. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Byron Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley 2012

    Snoothrank:

    One of the best SMV pinots I've ever had period. Sophisticated and complex with nuanced multi0berry fruits - cherry, blueberry, pomegranate, more - with earthy notes, vanilla and an interestingly twinge of brush and mocha. Bright acidity and juicy minerality lead to lengthy and complete aftertaste - excellent wine - best pinot of the celebration... Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • Byron Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley 2012

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by khovey


  • Byron Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley 2012

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by khovey


  • Here's the funny thing:  For just a minute, Napa Ridge Cab was made ... made ... It was from the Santa Maria Valley, I think, but I bought it knowing it was a TWG product.  They bought a respectable winery and this was still produced by that winery.  It was pretty darn bad.  I've had Meiomi, and it was weird, but not undrinkable, I thought.  ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine you would not drink...


  • Toretti 2011

    Snoothrank:

    Oh... Santa Barbara County Pinot Noirs... I am a big fan of the French wines, I made it to Napa... and yet... I have a soft spot in my heart (and mouth) for the beauty of the many flavors of their Pinot Noirs. Mr. Toretti knows what he is doing too: silky, yet firm, and sophisticated, this wine will go well with almost any foods (not sure about ... Read More

    Wine review by AlineAlmeida


  • Belle Glos Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley Clark & Telephone Vineyard 2007

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by gman30341


  • Tantara Syrah Santa Maria Valley Bien Nacido Vineyard 2009

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by XZYMURGIST


  • Darren--'09 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, '11 Block 28 Zin and ... ... ... more than Santa Ynez/Santa Maria Valleys and much more than Paso Robles.  I will give the edge to Sta. Rita Hills for the time being, but stay tuned for updates.Going Italian, tonight. (Last Bottle pose): It's 80 (Fahrenheit) degrees here in the Inland Empire.  So, i... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?


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