Notes Matt Kettman in the recent article, “There is no more dynamic of a wine-tasting scene in the world than what can be experienced in Santa Barbara County right now. Thanks to the Transverse Range, the mountains and valleys on this southwestern corner of California run east to west, rather than north to south — it’s the only place on the West Coast of the Americas where this geographic anomaly occurs.”
“Viticulturally, the significance is that the Santa Ynez and Santa Maria valleys open directly onto the frigid Pacific Ocean, and then snake inland, where the climate grows warmer each mile as the impact of fog and wind dwindle. That means while cool-climate varieties such as Pinot Noir and Chardonnay can thrive near the coast, grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc that enjoy a bit more heat can excel in the deeper areas. Almost every popular grape variety in the world can find a happy home in Santa Barbara County, meaning that there’s a wine for every preference.
But the wine diversity is only part of the story. The Santa Ynez Mountains also create a dividing line between the bucolic ranchlands of North County — which are reminiscent of wine countries the world over — and the more developed, beach-hugging communities of the South Coast. This is where the city of Santa Barbara reigns as a historically imbued, architecturally magnificent specimen, full of cosmopolitan opportunities yet almost entirely walkable.”
— Matt Kettman, The Press
Read the full article here.