About Greg Martellotto

Greg Martellotto has led a multifocal life. From age 5 to 22, he played soccer and expected to be a pro. At 19 he ran a house painting company and turned it into a franchise. At 20, he attended Stanford University on a soccer scholarship but studied biology with the thought of going to medical school. After graduation with a bachelor’s degree and the end of soccer dreams, he took off for three years and traveled to 55 countries. When Greg returned, his wine business took shape, made out of threads from his past, a love for cooking and wine, for entertaining friends.

Greg has been making wine since 2005. His peripatetic path has led him to winemaking experience in Mexico, Italy, Napa Valley, Paso Robles, and Santa Barbara. He holds a degree in Biological Sciences from Stanford University and a Masters degree from the University of Texas. His global wine experience has provided opportunities to travel to most of the major winemaking regions of the world as both a buyer and a consumer, which informs his style. Equally important and unique among most winemakers, Greg's experience as an importer and wine buyer provides insiders access to the greatest wines and wineries in the world. In this capacity, he regularly tastes more than 400 wines per month and he knows great wine.

One of the most important influences on Greg’s winemaking is his diverse background in the wine business. Most folks in the wine biz fall into one of three tiers; they work for a winery (production), for a distributor (wholesale), or they work for a retailer/hospitality (restaurants/service). Greg has worked in all of these tiers. As a result, he regularly tastes about 4000 wines per year. He has had the privilege to taste many of the great wines at wineries throughout France, Italy, Spain, Argentina, Chile, South Africa, Australia, California, New York, Texas, among other wine growing regions. While Greg’s heart and genetic code may lie in Italy, his taste preferences lean toward Bordeaux. This is the reason Greg focuses on Cabernet Sauvignon and other Bordeaux varietals in Santa Barbara.

 

Greg’s Philosophy on Wine

“In a world awash in wine with abounding new wine brands amid increased distributor consolidation, I’m constantly looking for wines that jump out of the glass and surprise me. I’m not easily surprised. Balanced alcohol, oak tannins, and zippy acidity that make my lips smack are qualities of wines I find appealing. I believe great wine complements life. Wine is shared at peak moments and becomes a tool to make memories and experiences more vibrant. Wine brings levity and joy. Personally, I’m fastidious about what I ingest and attentive to every meal. For this reason, I’ve begun providing full disclosure with all technical information available on the rear wine label. I would rather have a wine that represents a vintage and shows variety, than a wine that is uniform, bland or painted by numbers. Wine is art and science, romantic and intimate, and it’s also fermented grapes.” ~ Greg Martellotto

 

Wine Reviews & Winemaker Accolades

Martellotto 2014 La Gioja Merlot (Santa Ynez Valley)

Wine Enthusiast - 87 Points

Intriguing notes of sandalwood and cedar meet with dark red fruit and a touch of black pepper on the nose of this wine. The palate is layered with interesting touches of sage, marjoram, gravel and tar, hints of black cherry and loamy earth, and a chalky mouthfeel.

Martellotto 2016 La Bomba, Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara

Tastings - 89 Points, Silver Medal

Nearly opaque deep purple color. Aromas and flavors of grape preserves and wilted violet with a soft, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a breezy finish with cottony tannins and moderate oak. An approachable and food friendly red blend for all wine-lovers.

Martellotto 2014 La Bomba Cabernet Sauvignon (Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara)

Wine Enthusiast - 86 Points

Caramelized meats, dark cherry fruits, tar and pencil lead elements emerge on the nose of this bottling. The flavors are reminiscent of charred beef, with charcoal, turned earth and dark chocolate set against dried blueberry background.

 

Articles & Interviews