Posts Tagged "Santa Barbara"

Santa Barbara Wine Country

Jim Clendenen, Allison & Bob Lindquist.

Earlier this week, the news that Au Bon Climat Winemaker Jim Clendenen had passed away sent shockwaves throughout the wine industry. His name is synonymous with wine from Santa Barbara county, but his legacy reaches well beyond the state of California. We had the good fortune of meeting him in late February of 2020—our last AdVINEture outside of Canada before COVID-19 closed the Canada/USA border. We had made several trips to Santa Barbara wine country prior to then but due to his extensive travel overseas, our schedules never managed to sync. Just over a year ago the stars aligned, and our patience was rewarded with a most memorable afternoon as guests of one of his infamous long table lunches. A lunch that happens daily at the winery for staff, with Jim at the kitchen helm when he was in town. We described him at the time as “Plain-speaking, intelligent, witty, iconoclastic and maybe a bit irreverent too, but unmistakably charming.” We hope you’ll enjoy revisiting our time with him this week as we honour a true pioneer:

Jim Clendenen

Jim Clendenen with winery dog Emmy.

As the tributes pour in from around the world, the stories of his generosity, humour, mentorship and talent, remind us that we got to see firsthand what an unpretentious legend really looks like.

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Melville Winery: Rooted in the Soil

Melville Winery: Rooted in the Soil

Posted on Mar 13, 2019

Santa Barbara County wine

The tasting room at Melville.

Within the Sta. Rita Hills AVA in Santa Barbara County, there are only a handful of wineries that have reached critical acclaim worldwide. For the last two decades Melville Winery has consistently produced top quality wines in this underrated region, helping bring attention to its very unique terroir and the exciting potential still to be realized there.

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North Vancouver BCWe are acutely aware how lucky we are to live on the West Coast. Living in this area provides unparalleled proximity to several world-class wine regions and we have been fortunate enough to have shared some very memorable experiences together. With Valentine’s Day looming, there are few things that pair better with romance than a great bottle of wine, particularly when shared over a great meal. Expand that date into a weekend away with a loved one and you’re virtually guaranteed to win his or her heart.

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book Cover

Sipping Santa Barbara by Charine Tan & Dr. Matthew Horkey

Santa Barbara County is a wine region that we are big fans of for a variety of reasons. Wineries there are producing world-class wines that are terrific value (comparative to other, better known regions), not to mention it’s still a relatively undiscovered area making it particularly fun and accessible to wine enthusiasts. So when we were asked to review Exotic Wine Travel’s latest wine book Sipping Santa Barbara: Recommended Wines & Producers we accepted the offer with great interest and fairly high expectations.

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Brewer-Clifton Winery Santa Barbara

Winemaker Greg Brewer

We pulled up to Brewer-Clifton on a sunny but cool day in January. Outside of the winery stood Greg Brewer, co-founder and winemaker, looking up into the sky, his hand shielding his eyes, as he squinted into the sun. “That is the new Space-X rocket” he said, pointing. “Cool…. I’m Greg” he says as he stretches out his hand in greeting, a broad smile beneath dancing eyes. It turns out that initial moment captured a lot of the personality of the man we were about to spend the next 90 minutes with. Brewer is intellectual, curious about all sorts of things, warm, unusual and one seriously good winemaker.

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