When Ryan and Jessica Carr moved their Carr Winery operations into a sketchy industrial section between downtown and the ocean, into a Quonset hut no less, they probably had no idea that they would be pioneers. Now there is all this (deserved) publicity about the Funk Zone and the Urban Wine Trail, but the Carrs have been there for more than a decade. Ryan Carr was also an original garagista; he first made his own wine in a garage in 1999. Now he produces several thousand cases solely concentrating on Santa Barbara County grapes. But what separates him from many of his peers is that he is a grape grower as well. While he doesn’t own any vineyards, he personally …
From the outside, visitors might be hard-pressed to imagine some of Santa Barbara County’s best wines are kept in Carr Vineyards’ Santa Ynez tasting room for aging. Inside, it’s a different story. The tasting room and warehouse on Numancia Street is rustic and artsy — a place where wine is celebrated, rather than merely sampled.
It’s rare to see a quality Cabernet Franc, as they are usually blended with other Bordeaux wines. Ryan, however, has found a niche for growing and nurturing this grape so it can stand alone as its own varietal. And he’s been making it to high acclaim for over a dozen years.
Santa Barbara features hundreds of wedding locations – many historical, some modern; but few have the eclectic and funky, unique charm of the up and coming FunkZone. Featuring wineries, breweries, “it” restaurants, galleries and fun shops, this is an easy stroll over from lower State Street by the railway tracks. Tucked in the FunkZone is Carr Winery, one of our favorite FunkZone locations for private events.
“Work hard, play hard and source really good fruit… it all starts from the fruit!” – Jessica Carr
Since 1999, Owner/Winemaker/Sommelier Ryan Carr and wife Jessica Carr have been developing an impeccable assortment of Pinot wines – crisp, juicy and delicious. Established in downtown Santa Barbara, their main tasting room is inside of a quonset hut. If the corrugated structure doesn’t enthrall you to enter, Jessica’s warm smile and innate ability to promote her product will have you become a member of their 800+ wine club. The decor is modern yet industrial with a saloon-ish style bar with wine on tap. Adjacent is an outdoor comfy patio where you and a group of friends can soak up a session while basking in the sunshine.
Fall is the perfect time to explore Santa Barbara’s Urban Wine Trail — an impressive collection of Santa Barbara County wineries and tasting rooms — whether you’re a first-time visitor or know its quirky path by heart.
If you’re one of the thousands who’ve descended on Santa Barbara for Fiesta this week, you probably already know – this is a wine lover’s haven. The wines coming out of here are some of the best in all of California. And, between margaritas, the opportunities to savor them abound. Downtown is home to a handful of working wineries, too – small but fully equipped facilities where grapes are crushed, put in barrel and transformed into wine over many months and years. Following are three winery destinations not to miss, which offer the chance not only to sip the afternoon away but to meet the guys who make the wines face to face. These should really be a teaser, though – …
Greg Northcutt | Jul 26, 2017 Editor’s Note: The abbreviation, Sta., for Santa reflects industry use to differentiate the name of the appellation in the Santa Rita Hills area of Santa Barbara County from Vina Santa Rita, the older internationally trademarked name of a winery in Chile. In the first week of July, three weeks after completion of fruit set, the wine grapes in Ryan Carr’s Santa Barbara County vineyards had started to swell. That’s when he also began counting clusters to determine how much fruit to start dropping this month. “Pretty much everything set very nicely,” he says. “We definitely saw good flower production and less shatter than last year. Overall, the canopies and fruit production are looking very even.” Although his …
Carr Winery is pleased to present the July featured artist, Jon Carr, for the Summer Art Series.
The Inn Crowd, hosted by producer Craig Case with Chef Michael Hutchings presents a day at the Carr Winery. Ryan and Jessica Carr graciously invited us into their winery to tape a delicious edition of The Inn Crowd. Ryan Carr is the owner, winemaker and grower for Carr Vineyards & Winery. Growing up in Southern California Ryan always had an interest in farming, but never expected he would end up in the wine industry. After graduating from the University of Arizona with an Art degree, Ryan moved to Santa Ynez Valley in California where he discovered the wine industry. With just a taste of some of the local wines he decided to pursue a career in viticulture. He began working in the fields pruning vines with one of the local vineyard management companies.