Wednesday, June 23, 2010


Santa Barbara County Wine Country

It looks like the upcoming weekend may just be the kind of Southern California summer day that makes people want to head to the Santa Barbara County wine country.  If so - and maybe I don't mention this enough - please either designate a non-drinking driver or make liberal use of the spit bucket.  Wine tasting will no doubt be doing a booming business this weekend at all the wineries.  There are a couple of special events you may want to check into as well.
Buttonwood Farm Winery and Longoria Wines will combine for the Red, White and Blues Festival Saturday June 26, 2010 in the vineyard at Buttonwood in Solvang.  It's an annual affair offering a celebration of wine and music.  Saturday from 3:00 - 7:00 p.m. you can bring a chair or blanket and a picnic and spend the afternoon with the blues sounds of Zac Harmon, who Blues Revue calls "latter-day Eric Clapton or Robert Cray with shades of Luther Allison and B.B. King."  I'm sold.  Tickets are $35 and proceeds benefit People Helping People.  Call 805.688.3032 for tickets.

Up around Santa Maria, Riverbench  will offer barrel tasting with winemaker Chuck Ortman Saturday June 26, 2010 from 1:00 - 4:00 p.m.  Also on the menu is a cooking demonstration with Chef Brian Stein which will focus on products made with grape flour.  The cost is only $15.  

If your plans don't allow you to venture past the city, try the Santa Barbara Wine Festival at the Natural History Museum Saturday June 26, 2010 from 2:00 - 5:00 p.m.  75 wineries will pour and treats to eat will also be available.  Tickets are $95 at the door, but you get a price break if you order before Friday at 5:00.  Hit this site for info on the location and parking.

Whatever you decide to do, in whatever wine country you visit, please taste responsibly and get back safely.

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