fortino wineryDid you know there are over twenty-five wineries in the Santa Clara valley? Santa Clara County’s Silicon Valley has long been recognized for its Mediterranean like climates, perfect for growing fruit, making it the perfect region to grow a variety of wine grapes.

Native Americans referred our area as The Valley of Hearts Delight. Historically, this now famous tech center of the Silicon Valley was once filled with fruit orchards and vineyards for as far as the eye could see.  And although orchards have given way to high tech companies such as Yahoo, EBay, and Google, grape production and wine making has made a robust return to the Valley in the last several decades.

At the far south end of the Valley in Gilroy and Morgan Hill, tucked along the hills and highways are both large vineyards and small boutique family wineries – many with tasting rooms where visitors can enjoy a full day of wine tasting, picnicking, and special events including music, art, and gourmet food affairs.

Here at the Gilroy Best Western Forest Park Inn we have partnered with area wineries to offer specials throughout the year for our guests wishing to enjoy our local wines. When you check in at the front desk, ask about our current wine specials. We can also arrange to have a bottle of one of our local premium wines waiting for you upon arrival. When you call to make your reservations, please make your request with our guest services.

Featured Winery of the Month

Fortino Winery

4525 Hecker Pass Road
Gilroy, CA 95020
(408) 842-3305

Tasting: Open daily 10 to 5pm
Tasting is complimentary. VIP Tasting available.
10% case discount

Tours: by Appointment
VIP Barrel Bottling Party
Price Range: $10 to $30 per bottle

Fortino Winery is a fifth generation family winery off highway 152 in Gilroy. “Reminiscent of his native Cosenza, Italy, fourth-generation Wine master Ernest Fortino fell in love with the Hecker Pass region and settled here over 35 years ago.” The fifth generation is now working in the vines, carrying on the tradition of handmade wine making in the Italian style.

Their Burgundy Reserve is a special blend that has been handed down through generations. They offer an impressive variety of award winning wines. For a special treat, reserve a spot for the Fortino’s VIP Barrel Bottling Party, where you bottle and label your very own wine.

Written by local writer and photographer Laura Wrede