Ready to visit one of the most up-and-coming wine destinations in the country? Want stellar locations with rare tastes and unique tasting experiences?
Santa Barbara wine country is a must have on your vacationing list. Keep reading for tips on planning your visit, how to impress your friends, and ways to enjoy you’re vacationing experience with these pro-tips.
Santa Barbara Wine Country Pro Tips
Remember, you’re not there for a long time, you’re there for a good time!
TIP 1: Knowledge is Power
California is one of the premium growing locations. It’s geography, climate, ease of water, and natural soils make it a haven for winemakers and wine tasters alike. While you’re venturing through it, here’s the main wines to know:
- Pinot Noir
- Some Rhone-based and esoteric varietal wines
But especially Pinot Noir. That wine is the big chief of Santa Barbara wine country. So when in doubt asking for the house Pinot Noir is a safe bet.
TIP 2: While You’re Tasting, ASK QUESTIONS!
Aerate. Swirl. Sniff. Sip through teeth. You probably know the basics of tasting wine, but if you want to impress your friends, ask about The Holy Trinity
These are big three winemaking questions. If you find a wine you really enjoy (or maybe one you don’t so you’re just asking for your records) these three things are vital.
- Grape variety/varieties
- Where the grapes came from
These are like the DNA of the wine.
TIP 3: Don’t Be Shy-Get to Know the Locals
Not only is this polite, but it also builds a relationship when you ask for your winemaker’s name.
By getting to know the person who’s serving or making your wine you’ll be able to learn a little more about the area and where to go next. With Santa Barbara wine country being a unique growing range with a healthy bunch of micro-wineries, the community is distinctly close-knit.
Taking the time to get to know someone could reveal your next destination, quaint towns to visit, local eateries, common wine jokes, and more.
TIP 4: Visit a Beautiful Santa Baraba Winery
While you’re out you might be wondering what Santa Barbara wineries and vineyards you should visit with the time you have. I’ve put together a brief list (definitely not comprehensive!) of some spots worth checking out.
2445 Alamo Pintado Ave
Los Olivos, CA
Hours: 11-5 PM Everyday
Call: Winery 805-688.8440 // Tasting Room 805-693-0077
Cost: “Regular and reserve tastings for a small fee.”
Don’t think scary and medieval, think modern-class with traditional-fire. Their tasting room is the only place to pick up small lot exclusive wines as well, so make sure you add them to your adventure list.
2974 Grand Avenue
Los Olivos, CA
Hours: 11 AM – 5:15 PM Seven Days a Week (Tasting Room hours vary.)
Cost: $15 Per Person (with the option of a bonus souvenir glass for 10 additional dollars.)
Epiphany is like a James Bond experience with enchanted forest surrounding your departure. You might even think you’re in Europe or something. Here be sure you try some Rhone-based and esoteric varietal wines as Epiphany has some of the best in the country.
Fess Parker Winery and Vineyard
6200 Foxen Canyon Road
Los Olivos, CA
Hours: 10 AM – 5 PM Everyday
Fess Parker is one of the most notable wineries to visit. Here you have the opportunity to sample dozens (if you can handle that much) of award-winning wines while you’re soaking in warm California sun.
TIP 5: Recharge Well
Getting a great nights sleep is not only important, it’s also an opportunity to keep exploring!
There’s a cute place in Solvang (that town we told you to visit) called Mirabelle Inn that’s a sure-fire-guarantee for a good night stay.
As a way to adventure through this incredible Danish town, I’d recommend asking the Inn staff similar questions about town treasures, best spots to eat, and so on.
Pouring Another Glass
For more on how to travel through Santa Barbara wine country swing over to our travel tips page. And as always, keep traveling everyone.