Sta Rita Hills/Sta Ynez Valley tasting room suggestions

I’m meeting a colleague from London in LA next week. We have meetings scheduled for Monday and Wednesday, but have Tuesday free. He’s a wine geek too and hasn’t ever visited CA wine country, so we’re headed north on Monday afternoon to spend Tuesday tasting. It looks as though a lot of the tasting rooms are only open Thursday to Monday and most of the emails I’ve sent out requesting appointments haven’t been responded to. Everybody is really busy making wine right now.

So my ask is for suggestions for the wineries/tasting rooms that are open on a Tuesday. Staying in Los Olivos so we can walk around there or head to the wine ghetto over in Lompoc.


Dragonnette (along woith Liquid Farm)
Loring/Cargasacchi (brand new, BTW)


thanks. Some of my favorites are on the list. The only problem is that none of them are open on Tuesday.


Email sent. I’ll open a bottle or three or four for the two of you, time permitting.


Larry I stopped by yesterday and two weeks ago. You were not in. What is more important, your harvest or seeing me and my wife. Talk about priorities. Geez.



Had I KNOWN you were in town, I would have made the time, my friend. All you gotta do is ask, and I’ll do my darndest to make it work . . . Next time?!?!?


See if you can get a reservation at Demetria. Call and schedule. My favorite place in SY. Absolutely beautiful too.

+1, Demetria is very nice, and the drive to the tasting room is very cool.

I would also recommend Arcadian, but it seems as if they have moved to the ghetto since I last tasted there. Prodigal used to be right next door in the same building on santa rosa rd, but it appears as if both have moved. That was one of my all-time favorite tasting double plays. Regardless, I’d recommend Prodigal also if open.

It looks as if Tensley isn’t open on Tuesday (that sucks), but Stolpman across the street in Los Olivos is open – that’s usually a nice duo.

I think Beckman and Dierberg Star Lane are open daily too. They can be hit or miss, but both make have some good wines IMO.


Prodigal now shares space with Cold Heaven and is not open on Tuesday. Shame too as that is a good stop.

From the places that are normally open on Tuesday I would do the following.
Alma Rosa
Dierberg Star Lane

Dinner at Avant Tapas and wine.

Or since you are staying in Los Olivos and if your preference is Rhones then theses all look to be open and worth while.
Tercero - if Larrry is available
Andrew Murray

Bonus is no driving.

Midweek just turns out to be a little tough in our area. Unlike many places, we tend to be quite quiet midweek, and therefore most places are closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

Great suggestions from others - I know Qupe, Andrew Murray and Stolpman are open every day, as are Byron and Alta Maria. All of these are within walking distance of each other, and me.

I believe Beckmen will be open, and they are only a 5 minute drive away, as is Brander (for Sauv Blanc especially).


Larry…bringing a couple with me today for you to convert. Hitting the ABC/Qupe open house then your way! Hopefully you will be around. I need to stock up!



Man o man - NOW I guess I better be in there! Will try to be there later in the day - I think that’s when you made it by last time. I’ll have a couple of newer wines open, including my 09 Larner Syrah - co-fermented with 5% viognier from Larner and aged in older FR oak barrels for 42 months . . . .


I also liked D’Alfonso-Curran. I think they are by appointment now at their winery.


Just a note of thanks for stopping in this afternoon - glad I timed it right champagne.gif

Glad you were able to enjoy some of my upcoming releases, including that tank sample of my '13 Mourvedre Rose! Great meeting your ‘better half’ and your friends as well - and always fun talking about wine related things newhere


Thanks everyone. On the plane now headed to LAX. I think the plan is Pinot in the morning-maybe some combination of Alma Rosa, Melville, Babcock, and/or Foxen, then Tercero and some other place in Los Olivos in the afternoon. I was at Demetria several years ago and may try for a late afternoon appointment there.

Looking forward to the visit, Craig!


What a great visit! Our boy Larry is bringing the thunder… Great wines across the board and of course those Grenache! Both Larner and Watch Hill… Seems Larner packs a little more punch but love them both.

Always fun talking “wine related” things. Michelle and I got a good laugh at the end! Small town!

Enjoy your visit! My last minute two cents would be to hit Clos Pepe and Brewer-Clifton for Pinot. (call both ahead of time). I think Jonata does tastings during the week…call them also. After that head down to Los Olivos and do Tercero. If Larry is there just sit and enjoy the moment. Having been to all the others around the town…you will not have the same experience anywhere else…which is meet and talk wine and other shit with the winemaker. Not to say that there are some great wines around but for my time…I like hanging with the man behind the wines.




Thanks for the kind words.

And Craig, so glad I was able to come in and pour for you and Graham! I had a blast pouring for the two of you and talking about Grenache, Burgundy, and many other topics. Sorry I couldn’t stay longer - I know you wanted to saver that Larner Syrah . . . but I had to get my son!!!

Hope to see you out in my neck of the woods again sooner rather than later!