The SB Post
If going wine tasting during the week isn't treat enough, Santa Barbara tasting rooms are opening their doors, and bottles, to pair with the tastiest treats around. Guaranteed to send you into a sweet bliss, these epicure.sb tasting experiences are not your average wine Wednesday tastings.
Each Wednesday during the month of October, Riverbench Winery's Santa Barbara Tasting Room is hosting "Sweets & Insobriety", a decadent flight of local Riverbench wines and delicious, Santa Barbara based, Koval Confections. This tasting is expertly crafted to illuminate the complexities of each wine. Must try wine? Riverbench 2010 Estate Pinot Noir
Offered not only on Wednesdays, but everyday throughout the month of October, Grassini Family Vineyards has teamed up with Jessica Foster Confections to host "Days of Wine & Chocolate". With every sip, indulge in a locally made truffle that is paired to perfection. Not to mention, each tasting comes with a recipe for a homemade truffle that will complement all Grassini Family wines. Must try wine? Grassini Family Vineyards 2010 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon
Thanks to epicure.sb and our local wineries, Wednesdays have gotten a little sweeter on the Santa Barbara South Coast!
Craving the best culinary creations Santa Barbara restaurants have to offer? Now is the perfect time to dine in at your local eatery to experience each of and every one of epicure.sb's special prix fixe menu offerings! October is half way through, and so are your chances of ordering these prix fixe menus only available during epicure.sb.
To give you a taste of what you can experience, read through a few of Visit Santa Barbara's team ambassador reviews of their fun toasting to epicure.sb!
Opal Restaurant 3-Course Prixe Fixe MenuNoelle, Marketing Manager
Dining at Opal Restaurant and Bar, the meal started off with a delicate Shredded Phyllo Wrapped Flash-Fried Tiger Prawn appetizer, drizzled in a creamy Coconut Curry Dipping sauce, and paired with a Napa Cabbage Salad. The salad featured juicy Mandarin Oranges, Toasted Almonds and Julienne Vegetables in a light Sesame Asian Vinaigrette. It was absolutely delicious and just enough to warm up my appetite for the next course! For dinner, I enjoyed a Slow Roasted Braised Short Rib with a Petite Syrah Asian BBQ Sauce and Crisp Yukon Gold Potato Cake. The flavors melted in my mouth and it was hearty enough to satisfy my palette. Though I was very full at this point, I of course had saved just enough room for dessert. A beautiful Pumpkin Spice Crème Brulee was brought out and I think I sighed out loud when I saw it. The plate was drizzled in chocolate with the words, "Enjoy", which I knew I would. It was a perfect balance of light and satisfying, and the pumpkin spice flavors were a perfect addition to the standard Crème Brulee. It brought feelings of fall and the holidays, paired perfectly with a hot cup of coffee. The meal was delicious and I left fully satisfied, yet hungry to experience more of epicure.sb in Santa Barbara!
Madeline, PR Coordinator
Arlington Tavern 3-Course Prixe Fixe Menu
Dinner at Arlington Tavern was the ideal date night location. In addition to a delicious 3-course menu, the atmosphere is romantic, cozy, and just the right setting for you and that someone special. Specifically created for epicure.sb, the menu "Take a Bite Out of Fall" consists of choices between Sweet Potato Jalapeno Soup or Heirloom Tomato Salad, Arlington Tavern Fried Chicken or Local Black Cod, and Lemon Pudding Cake or Strawberry Upside Down Cake. And if the mood strikes, you can add an optional wine/beer pairing! Needless to say that any of the options would have ended up being devoured, I enjoyed the Sweet Potato Jalapeno Soup, Arlington Tavern Fried Chicken, and Strawberry Upside Down Cake. If I had to describe my experience in two words, it would be "So Good....."
Bettina, Marketing Coordinator
Arch Rock Fish Exclusive epicure Entree
The setting of Arch Rock Fish was very ambient and paired well with the elegance of the meal. The exclusive epicure.sb entrée, named "Crave the Early Taste of Fall", consists of 5 Seared Diver Scallops so fresh they are caught same day! Served over a butternut squash and browned butter puree with kale, my mouth is watering again just thinking about this dish. The scallops were cooked to perfection while the brown butter added a unique and delicious flavor. The sautéed kale paired with the scallops made the entire meal very reminiscent of fall. If you're interested in these savory scallops, you'd better hurry to Arch Rock Fish before the month of October and epicure.sb is over!
Haven't participated in epicure.sb yet? Don't worry, there is plenty of time to enjoy Santa Barbara's best cuisine, libations and culture! Visit epicuresb.com for more information.
One of the many things to love about Santa Barbara is there is always something new and exciting to do. Very rarely will you find yourself sitting at home on a Friday night uttering the phrase "I'm bored" or "Can we please do something different tonight?" From concerts in the park during the summer to countless festivals hosted year-round to the plethora of restaurants and tasting rooms, Santa Barbara South Coast is the place to be!
One new event to spring to life in Santa Barbara is the Canary Hotel's Rooftop Perch Sing Along Series. If the phrase "Grease Sing Along", instantly brings a smile to your face, than this event is for you! What could be better than watching an all-time classic movie, under the stars, on top of one of Santa Barbara's finest hotels? In one word, nothing. This unique Santa Barbara series is the perfect girl's night out adventure you have been waiting for. Every Wednesday during the month of October, this series will showcase some of the best sing along movies paired with signature cocktails, and cozy blankets. Sing your heart out under the stars while enjoying complimentary popcorn and a night of guaranteed fun!
While this series kicked off on Wednesday October 2nd with Grease, there are still plenty of great shows to catch and sing along too! Upcoming October 16th is Bye Bye Birdie.
It's time to forget about what's for dinner, and leave the details (and dishes) to the expert chefs of epicure.sb!
One place where you'll be asking for "sama" more is at the Sama Sama Kitchen. Inspired by Indonesian food and fresh ingredients, Sama Sama's special prix fixe menu is a 3-course exploration through different countries that have settled and migrated to Indonesia. Over the course of 1,000 years, the Dutch, Chinese, and Portuguese have influenced the cuisine of Indonesia, and Sama Sama is ready to take you and your palate through this cultural, mouth-watering journey.
Chinese Course: ong choy stir fry, Chinese sausage, shiitake, soft boiled egg & pickled beets
Portuguese Course: chicken curry pastel, apple butter
Dutch Course: savory poffertjes, fried chicken oysters, maitake, smoked bourbon palm syrup, scallion oil, whipped honey truffle butter
Allow yourself to indulge and give your taste buds a treat! These special prix fixe menus are only available during epicure.sb.
Welcome to October and welcome to the beginning of epicure.sb, Santa Barbara South Coast's month long festival celebrating cuisine, libations, and culture. Filled with 31 days and 100+ ways to enjoy your stay, the 5th anniversary of epicure is officially underway. From epicure inspired hotel packages to special prix fixe menus, the real question is, where do you begin?
If the term "sip & savor" brings to mind visions of a relaxing autumn day in Santa Barbara wine country, accompanied by friends, and a glass of your favorite Santa Barbara wine, then this exclusive epicure.sb guide is for YOU! With countless wine related activities, Santa Barbara is an oenophile's oasis throughout the month of October. How will you pick and choose? Here's the rundown on 9 wine inspired events featured during epicure.sb:
1. Syrah 5 Ways
Is wine made in the vineyard or winery? How important is the location/terroir to a wine? These are some questions that will be discussed and answered at this tasting of Syrahs, from each of the 5 Viticultural Areas of Santa Barbara County. October 11th, 6pm
2. Celebration of Harvest
Santa Barbara County Vintners' Association's annual celebration of the year's bounty, where vintners take a break from the vineyards and cellars to share with you harvest tales and wines. October 12th, 1-4pm
3. Winemaker for a Day
Join winemaker Seth Kunin for a component tasting and blending seminar. After a tasting of the five component varietals, each participant will have the opportunity to create their own unique version of our beloved "Pape Star" - a Rhone blend featuring Granache, Mourvedre, Syrah, Cinsault and Counoise - then compare it to the 2012 Kunin Wines "Pape Star". October 18th, 6pm
4. Harvest Bites
Join AVA Santa Barbara for weekly harvest updates, including fresh grape samples, winemaker's comments and hearty small bites paired with Santa Barbara County wines. Recurring weekly on Wednesday from 5:30-7:30pm
5. Wine Down Wednesdays with Your Local Winemaker
Each Wednesday in October a local winery will be featured at Renegade Wines. The Winemaker (or Owner) will pour a selection of wines while discussing the philosophy behind their winemaking practices. Includes fine cheeses from C'est Cheese. Recurring weekly on Wednesday from 5-7pm
6. Winemaker for a Day with Margerum Wine Company
You'll roll up your sleeves and help with hand sorting and crushing grapes, yeasting and inoculating ferments, laboratory analysis, plunging and punch down ferments, and your day will end with barrel tasting and finally the opportunity to blend your own wine, with Margerum Wine Company. October 11 or 25 from 9am-3pm
7. Taste of Santa Barbara at SOhO SB
Join Santa Barbara County Vintners' Association at SOhO Restaurant & Music Club for Santa Barbara County wines paired with a Santa Barbara County winery. Recurring weekly on Wednesday from 5-8pm
8. Sweets & Insobriety
Enjoy a decadent flight of local Riverbench wines and delicious Koval Confections, expertly paired to illuminate the complexities of each. Recurring weekly on Wednesday from 11am-6pm
9. Days of Wine & Chocolate
Throughout the month of October, be sure to come by Grassini Family Vineyards' downtown tasting room for complimentary locally-made truffle with our usual wine tasting flight. Grassini Family Vineyards has teamed up with local Santa Barbara chocolatier, Jessica Foster Confections, to create a perfect wine and truffle experience. Recurring daily, 1- 6pm
It's not every day that Santa Barbara restaurants feature special prix fixe menus-unless it's the month of October! For 31 days, a variety of SB's favorite eateries will offer unique menus that will showcase local flavors, savory wine flights, flatbread specials, and much, much more.
This month-long celebration of Santa Barbara's best cuisine, libations, and culture is bursting with flavor that goes well beyond the food. Local businesses boast their creativity with special to exceptional offers that will take you 31 days to enjoy it all-and maybe go back for seconds!
And the best part? It's all just around the corner. Start planning your epicure.sb escape today. Get inspired with these prix fixe menus, special hotel packages, and 100+ ways to enjoy!
Boasting over 300+ days of sunshine a year, it's easy to see why Santa Barbara's fall harvest is so bountiful, and in the true spirit of Santa Barbara, well worth celebrating! Limiting the soiree to a day, weekend, or even a week just wouldn't be fair when you consider that there are over 100 ways to enjoy Santa Barbara. Welcome to epicure.sb-a month-long celebration of Santa Barbara's best cuisine, libations, and culture during the month of October!
Santa Barbara restaurants take tasting to a whole new level with
special prix fixe menus!
Craving some epicurean excitement? Consider becoming a winemaker or chef for a day. If you want to explore even more, there's always an opera devoted entirely to Julia Child or a sea kayaking tour of Santa Barbara's lobster-filled waters, before enjoying a seafood lunch. You can toast to future chefs-even kids can take part in cooking classes!
So pull out the calendar and begin planning your line-up of events and activities. epicure.sb offers something for every palette!
Photo: Old Spanish Days Fiesta
Next week and weekend mark the dates for this year's Old Spanish Days Fiesta. The historic festival has been a cornerstone of Santa Barbara's art and culture scene since 1924. It has grown into a five-day celebration of the area's Spanish and Mexican heritage. Dancers spin through the Sunken Gardens under the glow of the Santa Barbara Courthouse during evening performances. Vaqueros and vaqueras enjoy live rodeos. And then of course, there's the parade. Traditionally, businesses close at noon on Friday so that locals and visitors alike can flock to State Street to see one of the largest equestrian parades in the United States. The parade starts at the west end of Cabrillo Boulevard and heads east along the beach before turning up State Street to Sola Street.
Photo: AArthurFisher / Old Spanish Days Fiesta
Fiesta is one unlike any other, filled with vivid colors, vibrant history, and a generous lineup of incredible events. View the complete schedule, or simply plan to wander the streets of Santa Barbara July 31 - August 4; you're bound to run into many inviting aspects of this inconic festival when you do.
Photo: AAruthurFisher / Old Spanish Days Fiesta
It's summer in Santa Barbara, which means a lot of things to a lot of people. One of the main defining elements of summer in SB is the long list of incredible events and festivals to come!
It officially kicked off over Memorial Day weekend with I'Madonnari--the famous Italian street painting festival that takes place at Old Mission Santa Barbara. Hundreds of artists gather to transform the Mission parking lot into an array of calk art. If you missed the event, the art lingers throughout the first month or so of summer, so make sure to take a look!
There are the headlining festivals that draw people from all over--those signature Santa Barbara events. But if you're looking for something spontaneous, the Santa Barbara Calendar of Events is a great resource for what's going on right now. And if you're the party-hopping type, make sure you add these favorites to your summer lineup:
- Summer Solstice Parade and Festival - June 21 - 23
- 26th Annual Santa Barbara Wine Festival - June 29
- 4th of July
- Santa Barbara French Festival - July 13 - 14
- California Wine Festival - July 18 - 20
- Santa Barbara Greek Festival - July 27 - 28
- Old Spanish Days Fiesta - July 31 - August 4
So get out your day planner--and your evening planner--and start penciling in those Santa Barbara summer events and festivals you won't want to miss!
Don't miss your last chance to win a Santa Barbara Outdoor Adventure! Head over to our Facebook page and choose your favorite of the two featured Santa Barbara activities for a chance to win one of them!
Whether you're a long-time Santa Barbara fresh-air enthusiast or are just learning about all of the outdoor adventure one can find here, you won't want to miss your chance!