Three distinct wine countries, each with their own appellation, surround Silicon Valley. They are easy to get to, generally less crowded and offer better values than regions to the north. The 28-mile Santa Clara Valley Wine Trail loop has revived America’s original premium wine region. The Santa Cruz Mountains viticultural area encompasses 850 square miles and is highly regarded for premium pinots, syrahs and small production chardonnays. The Livermore Valley has more than 30 easily accessible wineries. Tasting rooms in the central part of the valley include Travieso in Campbell, Testarossa in Los Gatos, J. Lohr at 1000 Lenzen Ave. and Big Dog Vineyards in Milpitas. Paul Draper’s Ridge Vineyards in Cupertino produces some of the best wine in the world, and many wine bars offer local wines as well, among them the Vintage Wine Bar at Santana Row, Vino Vino at the San Pedro Square Market, Vyne Bistro on Paseo De San Antonio, Wine Affairs on the Alameda, Rootstock in Los Gatos and CooperVino in, where else, Cupertino.

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