Cucamonga is located in San Bernardino County, about 45 miles east of Los Angeles.
In the 1940s, this east/west oriented valley region hosted 60 wineries and over 35,000 acres of vine, as its thick-skinned grapes with high natural sugar levels proved ideal for the needs of east coast home winemakers. Today, only three of the original winegrowing family wineries and less than 1,000 vineyard acres remain. The loss of vineyard land continues and some of the nation's oldest vines could disappear.
The value of Cucamonga goes beyond the quality of its vines, as the region is also home to a strong tradition of unique fortified wines, including a highly regarded Triple Cream Sherry made by its smallest producer, the Biane winemaking family’s Rancho de Philo.
The sandy alluvial valley floors, rocky fans and terrace soils of the area help to reduce the risk of Pierce’s disease which has plagued surrounding areas. However, the AVA has not been completely immune to the effects of Pierce's and a moderate number of old vines have been lost to this plague. Over the past decade, however, the Filippi family has successfully replanted over 50 acres of new vines in the foothills of Rancho Cucamonga (including Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Mourvedre, Syrah, Petite Sirah and Zinfandel). Additionally, a further 100 plus acres will be planted in Cucamonga through 2009.