You’ve done Napa, Sonoma and Monterey, and visited their most important wineries. But there’s so much more to California wine, which you’ll explore on the Santa Barbara Urban Wine Trail. There are almost 30 wineries downtown, so you’ll want to do your homework before you set out. Most venues feature tasting rooms, but call first because some require appointments. Fees range from $5 to $15 per winery and include samples of five to eight wines. Most do not sell food, but weekends feature a number of food trucks along the route.
“Located in downtown Santa Barbara, Carr Vineyards is a quaint winery that produces its wine from locally sourced grapes from Santa Barbara County.”
As in May, when I focused an entire column on merlot, I’d like to spotlight another single grape varietal: Today, cabernet franc.
Cab franc is similar to merlot in that it’s also a Bordeaux varietal, and is not extensively planted in Santa Barbara County since it thrives with heat, and our region isn’t big on heat.
As a bonus, cab franc offers its fans a catchy moniker: “Franc-o-philes.” How can you go wrong?
Rundown of Recent Santa Barbara County Bottlings of the Bordeaux Grape and Loire Star
If you have yet to reach for cabernet franc, now’s the time to try the lighter, crisper, and more aromatic cousin to cabernet sauvignon.
Creativity can often come from shaking things up a bit, which is exactly what winemaker Ryan Carr has done with his new label, CrossHatch, a project focusing on co-fermented blends from Santa Barbara County vineyards. After making only single varietal wines for 11 years, Ryan wanted to try something different. He and his wife Jessica came up with the idea of CrossHatch, inspired by cross hatching, an artistic technique that uses closely spaced intersecting lines to create shading, definition, and form in a drawing.
125-number of days in the average grape growing season
1-number of days it takes to screw it all up
VINTAGE 2014 is a multimedia documentary project, that Carr Winery had the privilege of being part of, that lets wine lovers experience the journey of a vintage in real time, from bud break to barreling.
“This year’s gift bag is said to be worth over $24,000 of gifts that range from trips to fine jewelry. Quoting Lash Fary, “‘It’s all about that swag,’ It is a true honor to be even a very small part of Music’s Biggest Night. The Grammy Gift Lounge is always the highlight of my year.”
CARR WINERY -$50.00
“Talk about major swag.”
“Before the Grammys kick off Sunday, presenters and performers from the show get to indulge in a room full of free gifts. At the show’s official gift lounge presented by MTG and Distinctive Assets, celebs are treated to a shopping spree of sorts and a $25,000 gift bag. Guests are also treated to … bottles of pinot noir from Carr Winery.”
Carr Winery’s 2012 Pinot Noir from Turner Vineyard was part of the 2015 GRAMMY Award gift bags.
It was the first vintage from Turner Vineyard, and the first vintage is always unlike any other the vineyard will produce. It was a very cool growing season, mostly, but just as the fruit was getting ripe, we had a heat wave. The fruit in Turner Vineyard finished up quick and turned out really good.