Industrial Eats

Our most recent day in wine country was a visit to the Santa Ynez Valley in Santa Barbara County. We prepared ourselves for wine tasting with lunch at Industrial Eats in Beullton. One of our favorites, Industrial Eats serves an ever evolving menu of sandwiches, salads and pizza. We shared a wild mushroom, Camembert and garlic pizza and a turkey, caramelized onion, arugula and basil mayonnaise sandwich. we were stuffed! Luckily, our first wine tasting stop was next door. Alma Rosa Vineyard and Winery recently moved their tasting space from their ranch on Santa Rosa Road to Beullton, creating a light and airy space inRead More →

Briar Rose Winery

by Cheryl It has been years since I’d been tasting in Temecula (I’m embarrassed to say how long), but last Saturday Scott, Matt, and I drove down the I-5 for what we thought would be a well-planned day. We’d done a little research and decided on two large and two small wineries. We would stop in Old Town Temecula, pick up some sandwiches, and picnic at one of our stops. The best thing about a good plan is that you can throw it out the window and still not veer too far off course. Old Town was packed. All we saw of it was theRead More →

Our first stop of the trip, Gainey Vineyard, on Hwy. 246, just east of the town of Santa Ynez. It’s an old favorite, I’ve been a member for years. The wines are very good but it’s the tasting room that really gets my attention. It’s dark and cavernous with pretzels and dips set out among the barrels. I like to take my glass and walk away from the bar and savor the wine unhurried.  At the back is the Cellar Club for members.  For me it’s all about the Chardonnay. While Gainey’s Chards are always drinkable, they have changed with evolving  trends. Ten years agoRead More →

Cold Springs Tavern Exterior

January is a wonderful month to go wine tasting in the Santa Ynez Valley. Days can be relatively warm and sunny with little danger of rain. Not so this year. January has turned out to be one of the wettest in recent history and we couldn’t be happier. Does rain put a damper on wine tasting? Au contraire. The golden hills of the back country of Santa Barbara county are emerald green. And it’ll stay green well into the year. The storms hit much harder in northern California, vineyards in Sonoma getting as much as 13 inches of rain. The Russian River overflowed its banks.Read More →

Everyone at California Wine Navigator is very excited about the changes to the website. We’ve created a new look using a responsive design that looks great and is super easy to use on tablets and smart phones. After all, a site with the word ‘navigation’ needs to be mobile. Now all we need is cell service in Foxen Canyon.Read More →

Re:Find Distillery

Sipping world class reds and whites in the golden hills of California is just about anyone’s idea of heaven. But when temperatures sore into triple digits I begin to crave the tinkling of ice in a cocktail glass. My friends and I were up in Paso Robles hitting the wine trails and decided to check out a distillery we’d heard about. We’d had a wonderful, late-morning, wine and food pairing  at Opolo, sampled some fine Rhone blends at Tablas Creek, and tasted with conviction at Brecon. But after four days in wine country, we hankered after something a little harder. So we headed east on Adelaida Road to Re:Find which isRead More →