Santa Barbara Wine

The Santa Barbara County AVA lies within the Central Coast territory of California. Like much of the state’s wine regions, grape planting began with the Catholic missionaries to make wine for ceremonial mass. Though Santa Barbara can boast some of the earliest plantings, beginning in the 1780s with Father Junipero Serra bringing Mission grape cuttings from Mexico and planting them in what is now the Milpas Creek district. From there, mission vineyards spread to San Jose, Santa Cruz, Carpinteria and Goleta  (an adobe winery built there in 1804 has the distinction of being the area’s old landmark).

But also like most of California’s wine regions, production in Santa Barbara was hurt by the late 1800s Phylloxera crisis and further brought down by the Prohibition between 1921 to 1933. It wasn’t until the 1960s that a U.C. Davis study identified Santa Barbara County as a favorable wine-growing region due to its combination of soil types, geology, water and coastal climate conditions Read more »

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Popular wines made in Santa Barbara under $20

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Varietals Produced in Santa Barbara View all

  • Viognier

    This special and exciting variety has taken California by storm and young plantings already demonstrate that this out...

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

    “King of the Red Wine Grapes.” The colonizer of the vineyards, pushing native wine grapes into its shadows. The Caber...

  • Sauvignon Blanc

    Sauvignon Blanc is widely grown in California -- at over 15,000 acres, it’s now the third most planted variety -- and...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Syrah

    The irony here is that Syrah’s origins could give Carmen Sandiego a run for her international wallet. Syrah’s deepest...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

Subregions of Santa Barbara

  • Santa Rita Hills

    The Sta. Rita Hills AVA is located within Santa Barbara County in California’s Central Coast re...

Popular Wineries in Santa Barbara View all

  • Fess Parker Winery & Vineyard

    When Fess Parker was cast in the roll of Davy Crockett in the mid-1950’s, it caused an interna...

  • Melville Winery

    Welcome to Melville Vineyards and Winery! Come by our tasting room and sample our current Estate ...

  • Lucas & Lewellen Vineyards

    Visit the Lucas & Lewellen Vineyards Tasting Room, located in the charming European village of So...

  • Lincourt Vineyards

    There’s an atmosphere of casual grace at Lincourt that invites you to kick back and relax. But...

  • J. Wilkes Wines

    The roots of our new beginning actually took hold in 1984. I had just accepted a position with Bi...

  • Drew Family Cellars

    Jason Drew began his winemaking odyssey in 1980, when he helped plant his uncle’s vineyard in the...

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Santa Barbara on Snooth

  • Oh, just remembered some of the class Chardonnay in CA. Definitely ... Cruz, ... Cruz, Napa, SonomaHowever Santa Barbara in the South does very well with Chardonnay. Most of my experience is with Liquid Farm, but I hear Brewer-Clifton (from Charline) is doing great things, which is backed up by critical acclai Read More

    Forum post in the topic Learning more about US wine


  • Stephen, you should start thinking in terms of sourcing from the US directly. I ... directly. I ... Smoke 2008 Santa Barbara County "Ten" Pinot Noir  |  2 in stock  |  $99.99 Sea Smoke 2008 Santa Rita Hills Southing Pinot Noir  |  3 in stock  |  $69.99 Sea Smoke 2009 Santa Barbara County "Ten" Pinot Noir  |  3 in stock  |  $89.99 Sea Smoke 201... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Learning more about US wine by 125836dmcker 125836 dmcker


  • The Ojai Vineyard Solomon Hills Pinot Noir 2013

    Snoothrank:

    Attractive garnet color in the glass. Light flowery nose. Very subtle entry. Tangy red plum flavor along with violets. Fairly light-bodied. Very enjoyable wine. Nice acid tartness makes this easy to enjoy with or without accompaniment. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Andrew Murray "Tous les Jours" Syrah Santa Ynez Valley 2013

    Snoothrank:

    That does Rhone style reds at this price is good...that they are at a consistently high level is even better. this is big and bold, blueberries, sweetish dark cherry tannins, some cigar box, violets - yumm. 91 points - drink now - Paul Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • Andrew Murray "Tous les Jours" Syrah Santa Ynez Valley 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by jose pendas


  •   AU BON CLIMAT La Bauge Au-dessus Pinot Noir, Santa Barbara 2009 and 2010Are these worth picking up at around USD 40-50 per bottle  Read More

    Forum post in the topic Need Help


  • Sea Glass Santa Barbara County Pinot Noir 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Not a bad entry level pinot and well worth $10. It has a dark cherry profile that adds richness with an earthiness and touch of spice. Good daily drinker. 86 points - drink now - Paul Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • I know the SEA GLASS Wines (Santa Barbara County).....good value indeed!Thanks for posting, RCKR 1951! Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines - Post Pictures...


  • Zaca Mesa Santa Ynez Syrah 2014

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by mmelko


  • Jacqueline Bahue Pinot Noir Santa Rita Hills 2014

    Snoothrank:

    A recent Naked Wines Selection and to me, a fine Pinot Noir. Pale translucent Ruby Red in the Glass. Opens with loads of fruit - ripe Cherry and Cranapple then moves off to earth, herbs, and Cherry, and then some vanilla/almond/pine/cedar and chocolate cherries. Not much of this with the exception of the almond/pine/cedar/cola continues to the... Read More

    Wine review by puhnner


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