Cheers, It's the Santa Barbara Vintners Festival

Chat with the pros who make the wines, at beautiful Rancho Sisquoc Winery.

SO MANY QUESTIONS... can swirl around a bottle of great wine, but the question marks that first spring to mind may be some of the most obvious. Where can we buy it? How much is it? What food should we serve alongside, to best complement its character? And how should we store it, for optimal second-time-around drink-ability? Those are the basics, of course, and so important, but an oenophile will own up to the fact that there are far more questions hanging around...

A TOP-NOTCH BOTTLE OF VINO: Where did the winemaker first get the idea for this particular wine? How were the grapes? How was the weather? Was the final product a surprise to the people behind the label? Ferreting out the answers to such questions is rather trickier than finding the price, but there is a place you can go with all of the things you long to ask a winemaker in tow. It's the Santa Barbara Wine Country Vintners Festival, and the Festival Grand Tasting will take place at Rancho Sisquoc Winery on the afternoon of...

SATURDAY, MAY 4: The 37th annual festival will feature the craftspeople who create wine, as well as a host of wines to try from 70+ wineries, "many pouring newly released wines." Feeling noshy after sipping around? Look for delicious on-site eats, as well as "... live music, culinary and wine demonstrations, and a silent auction," features that will further enhance the festive feel of the afternoon. You'll want to make for the Santa Maria Valley for all of this goodness, and you'll want to have your ticket, too. A general admission is $75, and there's a ticket for those who will not be tasting wine, for $25, should you want to line up the ticket for your designated driver in advance. 

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