In what was once an old, rundown industrial area just west of Santa Barbara’s bustling shopping district, the Funk Zone has emerged as a hub of unique art, culture, food & artisan wine. In my opinion, it’s one of the best things to happen to Santa Barbara in a long time.
With a number of shops, galleries, wine tasting rooms, and restaurants all within walking distance, it’s easy to spend a day roaming around and exploring.
Several of the tasting rooms that comprise Santa Barbara’s Urban Wine Trail are located right in the Funk Zone – some of which are open late. Buellton’s Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company also opened a second location with a great outdoor patio for microbrew-lovers (or those just needing a break from wine).
My first stop at the Funk Zone was AVA Santa Barbara – a winery dedicated to making first class wines that highlight the very best of the five distinct AVAs (or American Viticultural Areas) of Santa Barbara.
The AVA Santa Barbara tasting room was truly one of the coolest I’ve seen. With the use of soil samples, incredibly detailed wall murals, and an excellent portfolio of wines, visitors get a serious education on what makes each distinct Viticultural Area unique.
We tasted an incredible line up of wines from cool climate Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays to a Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec that thrive in the region’s warmer areas. All the wines in this diverse portfolio were crafted from Santa Barbara grapes.
After AVA Santa Barbara, we walked up the street to check out Municipal Winemakers.
I absolutely loved the Municipal Winemakers tasting room. It was creative and eclectic with just the right amount of industrial grit that makes the Funk Zone so special.
Just like at AVA Santa Barbara, our dog Booker was invited to join us inside the tasting room while we tasted a delicious line up of wines. My personal favorites were the mouth-watering Bright White dry Riesling and the juicy Grenache.
I had such a fun day at the Funk Zone and can’t wait to head back. Stay tuned for Part 2…
AVA SANTA BARBARA
116 East Yanonali Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Phone: (805) 453-6768
Tasting room hours: 12PM - 7PM Daily
22 Anacapa Street
Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Phone: (805) 931-6864
Tasting room hours:
11AM - 6PM Monday through Wednesday & Sunday
11AM - 11PM Thursday through Saturday