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Welcome to Wine Santa Barbara Viticulture, Viniculture, and Oenology discerning Santa Barbara's finest wines. We highlight the fine wines of Santa Barbara County as well as the vineyards, wineries, and tasting rooms.
We also describe what goes into the winemaking process, and help you get the best deals when purchasing these fine regional wines of beautiful Santa Barbara, a region that has quickly gained fame as one of the country's finest wine-growing areas along with Napa Valley.
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The Best Wines of Santa Barbara County
Almost any type of wine you can dream of is available in Santa Barbara County with a panoply of vineyards and wineries.
Chardonnays, Merlots, and Syrahs aplenty await you on a trek through Santa Barbara wine country, along with such favorites as Gewurztraminer (a sweet white wine varietal),
Pinot Noirs of the Santa Barbara Wine Country region have been one of the most sought after varieties due to the movie Sideways that brought notoriety to the area. There are also some fabulous Rieslings.
When it comes to wineries there are the big names like Zaca Mesa, Firestone, and Fess Parker, but there are also many dozen hidden gems that are just as enjoyable to visit.
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With the surge in popularity of Santa Barbara Wine Country during the last decade many wineries have taken it upon themselves to update their facilities including some fabulous new wine tasting rooms.
Some wineries feature lovely courtyards with well-tended gardens and spectacular views of the picturesque countryside north of the city of Santa Barbara.
In this setting you will be able to fully appreciate the fruits of the land and discern such subtleties as hints of black pepper, notes of cherry, suggestions of roasted almond and the many other nuances of the tastes and aromas of fine wine.
Another highlight of visiting Santa Barbara Wine Country is learning about how the wines are made as well as how the grapes are grown, and you will be fascinated by the methods from picking the grapes at night when the sugar level tests just right to the oak barreling methods.
You will be able to identify a lively wine with a crisp acidity as well as detect the subtle sweetness in a fine vintage. You will learn what ripe tannin means, and will come to appreciate a lingering finish.
The countryside changes with each season, the glorious wildflowers each displaying their colors in turn, filling the meadows and covering the rolling hills where you will also see aged oak forests displaying a timeless beauty.
Of course the vineyards themselves, so carefully planned and meticulously tended to, are also very scenic and help you appreciate what goes into the fine beverages you are about to savor.
There are many reasons to visit Santa Barbara Wine Country including enjoying the beautiful scenery, tasting the wonderful wines, learning about viticulture and viniculture, and taking home some fine local products that will serve you well in the future.
Visiting Santa Barbara Wine Country
A visit to the wine region north of the city of Santa Barbara is a fun and educational experience. There are a variety of lovely inns where you can stay, and a multitude of tasty dining opportunities. In the wine tasting rooms you will find many friendly people willing to share their wisdom of the craft and science of winemaking and the stories of the area’s vineyards, wineries, and wine making styles.
The origin of wine growing in Santa Barbara stretches back for hundreds of years to the first missionaries, but the modern era of wine growing began in the 1960s when Santa Maria Valley became the first area to be planted with vineyards. Today well over 20,000 acres of Santa Barbara County is planted with vineyards.
Most of the vineyards and wineries of the Santa Barbara region are family owned and operated ventures though there are also some big companies as well. Over 100 wineries now operate in the Santa Ynez and Santa Maria Valleys. Santa Barbara Wine Country produces more than $150 million of wine annually, with more than one million cases of wine.
Before or after your visit to wine country you can enjoy the thriving city of Santa Barbara with its many museums, art galleries, antique shops, scenic waterfront, films and theater performances, and also great nature hikes and beaches to visit. Of course Santa Barbara is also known for its great restaurants.
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