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

  • Syrah

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

  • Sauvignon Blanc

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

  • Cabernet Sauvignon

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

  • Viognier

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

  • Chardonnay

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

  • 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

  • Lincourt Vineyards

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

  • Summerland Winery

    Summerland Winery is a boutique winery dedicated to the production of fine wines from the Central...

  • Blair Fox Cellars

    Blair Fox Cellars is a small 500 case ultra-premium boutique label which specializes in hand-craf...

  • Lucas & Lewellen Vineyards

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

  • Hitching Post

    The Buellton Hitching Post was established in 1986, but our roots started at the Casmalia Hitchin...

  • Alma Rosa Winery and Vineyards

    Pioneer winegrowers in the Sta. Rita Hills AVA since 1970, Thekla and Richard Sanford have left t...

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Santa Barbara on Snooth

  • The Ojai Vineyard Fe Ciega Pinot Noir 2011

    Snoothrank:

    PnPed. Almost a prune color in the glass. Very funky nose which I would presume to be Sulphur and which I would further assume would blow off if I was more patient. Very pleasant introduction of strawberry and cherry. The next thing I notice is that this wine is slightly more tart than so many others. I am very OK with that, but some may ob... Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • Growing up in Ventura/Ojai/Santa Barbara then later visiting family there during whatever kind of trip I never wanted to do I-5 if it was avoidable. Flying from Santa Barbara was an option but only in a big rush and when the limited flight schedule there warranted. Driving down to LAX or any of the other LA airports saved only an hour or two com... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Amador County 101--See... by 125836dmcker 125836 dmcker


  • It is 60% Monterey, 24% Santa Barbara, and 16% Sonoma. Bottled in Napa for cache. Your quintessential cheap CA Pinot.  Try it you may like it.    Read More

    Forum post in the topic Searching for a Resonable...


  • The Ojai Vineyard Roussanne Bien Nacido Vineyard 2014

    Snoothrank:

    Clear, pale yellow in color. Lots of fruit and flower aromaspear, apple, geranium. On the tongue, the fruit is most apparentthe pear apple thing, but, also tropical fruit like kiwi. I guess it would not exactly be a news flash if I characterized it as light bodied. Very nice acid content makes for freshness. Read More

    Wine review by EMark


  • So where was the Faiveley stored the last 10 years for its label to get like ... where Napa and Sonoma and Santa Barbara, etc. will be in 900 years?Hard for me to look at most anything without trying to understand its background and how it got to be the way it is.... &nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Burgundy, Barolo Dinner at... by 125836dmcker 125836 dmcker


  • Jaffurs Syrah Santa Barbara County 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by boglebogle


  • Jaffurs Syrah Santa Barbara County 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by boglebogle


  • Tenshen Santa Barbara County 2013

    Snoothrank:

    A killer 1st vintage showing that the winemakers know what they are doing. Given the grapes involved this should sit nicely for another 18 months. Exhibits red fruits (plum) and dark cherry, wood and earth and spice. There is a light chocolate thats rides with the tannins and is balanced by the acidity. Great wine - drink or hold and decant ... Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • Tenshen Santa Barbara County 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by boglebogle


  • Tenshen Santa Barbara County 2013

    Snoothrank:

    No written review

    Wine review by boglebogle


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