Rick and Aurora Grimm, the couple behind Grimm’s Bluff, moved their family from Monaco to Santa Barbara in 2007 and soon found themselves missing the European wines they had grown accustomed to. Without much knowledge of California wines, they began exploring the Central Coast to better acquaint themselves with the wines of this region. During their tasting adventures, they found that Paul Lato made some of their favorite Santa Barbara wines, similar in style to their beloved European wines. Little did they know that a few years later they’d have their own label, Grimm’s Bluff Winery, and Paul Lato would be their winemaker!
One of the benefits of living in Southern California is having access to farmers’ market produce all year long, but I especially love when the spring bounty arrives. While perusing yesterday’s farmers’ market, I was immediately inspired to make a spring green frittata, because who doesn’t love breakfast for dinner every now and again? Plus, I had the perfect frittata wine pairing in mind: the 2014 Cultivar Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc.
I love tasting wines from places that are slightly off the radar. Of course, they aren’t always a hit, but it’s still fun to try new stuff. Given that it is officially rosé season (although, must we limit rosé to just one season? Nah…), now is a great time to explore pink wines from around the world. Now, you’ve probably had rosé from Provence and the USA, but how about rosé from Corsica?
It’s true there’s no shortage of wine available to us Santa Barbarians. As many tasting rooms as there are around town, there are a decent number of wine bars in Santa Barbara, too. From those pouring regional wine (and beer) to Old World offerings, here’s my guide to a few of Santa Barbara’s best wine bars, starting from closest to the beach and moving up State Street:
I have to admit, I had built up the Turtle Inn, Belize, in my head well before we arrived to the property. My expectations were on the higher side not only because the pictures looked incredible, but also because it was the last night of our honeymoon and I was hoping it would be utterly romantic and relaxing. I’m happy to report that we were not disappointed!
One of my favorite things about writing a wine column in the SB Sentinel is having an excuse to meet with different people in the Santa Barbara wine industry, especially those who are doing what they love on their own terms. Recently, I met with winemaker Mike Roth, one half of the small Santa Barbara County wine label, Lo-Fi Wines, which he established in 2013 with longtime friend Craig Winchester. Lo-Fi Wines is a partnership between two friends who believe that wine should be enjoyed with food, on any given day, without having to spend a fortune. Kudos to that!
When Nick and I decided on Belize for our honeymoon, I was just as excited to try the local drinks as I was seeing if I could find good places to drink decent wine. Although Belize is more synonymous with rum than with fine wine, I had to find out — is there even wine in Belize? I also had to answer the question of what to drink in Belize…
Food and wine go hand-in-hand, but when you get to experience them together in one big celebratory weekend, you know it’s going to be an especially good time! This year marked my third time attending Pebble Beach Food & Wine, which celebrated its 9th birthday, and every year I leave with a full belly, new friends and a huge smile on my face.
There’s a lot of great wine out there, but one of my favorite things about wine writing is going behind the scenes to meet the people making the wine and/or hear the stories behind the wine. Recently, I got to do just that for the Spring issue of SB Seasons Magazine (out now), where I got share the wonderful story behind Grassini Family Vineyards‘ red wine known as ‘Equipo.’
After spending 3 days without a real shower during our sailing trip in Belize, Nick and I were eager to check into our hotel in Placencia. Besides, after all of the jungle adventuring, camping and snorkeling, we were due for more of a ‘honeymoon vibe’ to round out the trip. It was time for some quality rest and relaxation together at the beautiful, seaside Chabil Mar, Belize.