If Santa Barbara County is a true wine-hub then the city of Santa Barbara is its gateway with the Santa Barbara Urban Trail. While there are no vineyards within the city limits, the wine scene is very strong here with many wineries, tasting rooms and shops to choose from.
Known as the “American Rivera” due to a convergence of cinematic beach location, strong local art scene, luxury hotels and passion for wine, Santa Barbara has much in store for the wine curious.
Envelope Yourself in a Local Santa Barbara Experience
While you have many options to create a unique wine experience in Santa Barbara, priority one should be a visit to The Wine Collection of El Paseo, which is a collection of tasting rooms of the finest local wines, including the famous Au Bon Climat.
Jim Clendenen practically put Santa Barbara County wine on the map. His special tasting room allows you to design your own tasting or taste older vintages of his wines, primarily from Santa Maria Valley. Two other must-stop locations here are Jamie Sloan Wines and Grassini Vineyards, whose wines come from Happy Canyon.
Stay at the lovely Spanish Garden Inn close to the State Historical Museum, and dine at the local landmark and wine haven, Wine Cask Restaurant, for the best fresh ingredients and Santa Barbara hospitality. With good planning, you can catch a performance at the gorgeous, historic Lobero Theater, the perfect end to a perfect day.
FYI: All these locations are within walking distance from each other!
Go the Funky Route for Something Different
For an alternative perspective of Santa Barbara, spend the day at the beach, staying at Hotel Milo, with its stunning location. Then head to The Funk Zone in the late afternoon where you can enjoy a full evening of art + food + wine.
Try the delectable wines from Municipal Winemakers which has a fun, casual environment, and then drop into a few other tasting rooms to compare wines. Grab a snack at one of the cafes along the way.
Learn about Santa Barbara’s art scene by visiting some of the many galleries and connecting with artists who help make this city such a special place to visit.
End your day at Les Marchands Wine Bar and Merchant for a marvelous dinner and a special glass of wine.
Plan Your Own Unique Experience
Take part in the journey of Santa Barbara wine by walking or riding (bike or shuttle) the Urban Wine Trail. More than 28 wineries are part of this self-guided trail of tasting rooms that offer you the opportunity to learn about the diverse types of wines made in Santa Barbara County.
With this trail you're able to customize your visit, mixing wine tastings in three distinct areas with great local food, a bit of window shopping and perhaps a sip of cool water in the shade now and again. No rush. Take your time. Relax. You're on Santa Barbara time.
Come to Santa Barbara County
Enjoy the beautiful weather, the spectacular vistas, the down-to-earth people and the unique and tasty wines!