Monday, March 3, 2014

New Discoveries in Santa Ynez

Another excellent Santa Ynez visit. We have been going to the area for over 17 years now, and I have to say, it has really come a long way. And I'm sure long-timers like Jim Clendenon and Richard Sanford might say try going back 30+ years and see that difference, but I only have my frame of reference.

There are quite a number of newer wineries, a change in some of the local eating establishments and some real growth in certain areas. All for good.

Our winery visits at Alta Maria, Presqu'ile and Martian Ranch were all very enjoyable. We now have several of the wines in stock.

2011 Alta Maria Sauvignon Blanc Santa Barbara $17.99 California
from the winery: "Pale antique gold in color, dynamitic aromas of honeydew, gooseberries and tomatillos abound in the glass. Tropical fruit adds to the body of this moderately weighted wine which opens up on the palate to zesty acidity and slight minerality."

2010 Alta Maria Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley $27.99 California
(90 Points: International Wine Cellar) "Vivid ruby. Sexy red fruit aromas show good clarity and lift, with Asian spice and floral nuances adding complexity. The spicy quality carries onto the palate, which displays smooth raspberry and spicecake flavors and a touch of clove. Finishes silky and long, with lingering sweetness and soft tannins."

2012 Martian Ranch Grenache Blanc Los Alamos $21.99 California
from the winery: "Big almond and lemon verbena aromas greet the nose with hints of lemongrass and quartz adding complexity. Texturally it is really quite lovely; it’s bright, clear and moderately tense with a hint of white peach accenting a core of orange toned fruit." Biodynamic and sustainable farming.

2011 Martian Ranch Syrah Red Shift Estate $23.99 California
Farmed biodynamically and sustainable on their estate in Los Alamos, this Syrah Red Shift is very fresh. The nose is filled with spicy notes and red fruits with hints of herbs and spice. The palate shows a little meatiness, and some dark berry fruit with a long mineral-laced finish. Impressive.

On the food front, we were excited to discover Industrial Eats and Brothers Red Barn. Industrial Eats is quite new and very impressive. They serve wood fire pizza and flatbreads, along with gourmet cheeses, house-made specialties like terrines and daily items. All great. And Red Barn is the newest iteration of the Mattie's Tavern folks. A little slicker but still charming and the food is excellent. As evidenced by this steak snap.

Get yourself to wine country in Santa Ynez.

Industrial Eats 
181 Industrial Way
Buellton, CA 93427
(805) 688-8807

Brothers Red Barn
3539 Sagunto Street
Santa Ynez, CA 93460
(805) 688-4142

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