York Mountain

One of California’s smallest AVAs, standing in the Santa Lucia Mountains, just 8 miles from the ocean, York Mountain is Paso Robles’ cool neighbor.

Lone Madrone winemakers check the vineyards for plant health.

York Mountain Wines

If you’re looking for stand-out Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Viognier, and Pinot Noir, you’ll find them in York Mountain. But if you’re looking for something a bit more esoteric, you’ll also find more niche grapes like Clairette, Grenache Blanc, and Graciano.

No matter what your taste, there’s a line of freshness and elegance through all the wines that directly reflects the sandstone soils and cooler climate.


Sitting just 8 miles from the cold Pacific Ocean, York Mountain is not as protected from rain and wind by the Santa Lucia mountains as Paso Robles. Therefore, it gets a lot more rain and fog and is overall much cooler than Paso Robles. We get fresh and mineral-driven wines, yet there’s enough warmth and sunshine to get red wines with ripe tannins and bold flavors.

The soils here are different from Paso Robles, mainly sandstone rather than limestone. This is good because sandstone drains well and retains heat, perfect for this wet and cool climate. Sandstone also ensures ripe tannins and tends to make elegant and perfumed wines.

Aerial view of the Calcaerous Winery in York Mountain.

Notable Wineries

Epoch Wines - With elegant and perfumed Syrahs and Viogniers, you might think you’re in the Northern Rhône. They have Tempranillo and other more esoteric grapes here too.

The Royal Nonesuch Farm - Sitting at 1800 feet (550m), this high elevation site is all about blends. You’ll find red and white Rhône varietal blends.

Herman Story - With wines from Paso Robles, York Mountain, and Santa Barbara, you’ll find everything from Pinot Noir to Petite Sirah.

Quick Facts:

  • Major Varieties: Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Viognier, Pinot Noir
  • Established in 1983.
  • Elevation Range: 1,500-1,700 feet (450-520 m).
  • Total area: 6,400 acres (2,600 ha)
  • Diurnal Shift of 20-30°F (11-16°C).
  • Annual rainfall: 50 inches (1270 mm)
  • Soils: Sandstone with Limestone
Selected York Mountain Wineries