The Alexander Valley American Viticultural Area (AVA) is located at the north end of Sonoma County wine country and home to more than 40 wineries. Best known for cabernet sauvignon, the AVA is 22 miles long and ranges from two to seven miles wide. Of its 75,000-plus acres, more than 15,000 are used to grow grapes. Alexander Valley received federal recognition as an AVA in 1984.
The AVA has a number of microclimates. Cabernet sauvignon grapes thrive throughout the valley, but growers also have success with varieties such as chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, zinfandel and merlot.
Alexander Valley is an easy drive north from San Francisco on Highway 101. Plan on an hour and a half to two hours ride, depending on where in the Valley you want to taste. Horizon Air flies into the Charles M. Schulz, Sonoma County Airport (STS) in nearby Santa Rosa daily from Los Angeles and Seattle.