My recent trip up north to Paso Robles to visit my family, although short, was the perfect getaway to hit the recharge button. Antique shopping, BBQ, long conversations in the car with my husband, visiting my parents, craft making, and driving down a long country back road on a perfect sunny day to go wine tasting.
Having grown up in a lot of open space there is nothing that makes me happier than to see rolling hills, grazing cows, vineyards, and sharing the road with a random biker or tractor. Our destination was the Rancho Sisquoc Winery, a 37,000 acre ranch in Santa Barbara County. Sisquouc is a Chumash word for “gathering place”, and gathering is what people do at this winery. It is a very inviting ranch. As I exited the car I was greeted with an orange blossom scent in the air, a friendly cat at my feet and stunning 360 degree views. The rustic tasting room, surrounded by a grassy lawn with tables and benches and large patios for picnicking and lounging, was open for business.
Our first wine taste was the 2009 Sauvignon Blanc and again I was greeted with a scent of blossoms. The wine has a delightful nose of tangerine and orange blossoms, the texture is smooth and has hints of pineapple, but not at all powerful. I am more of a red wine drinker than a white wine, but outside in the sunshine I enjoy a cool, crisp glass of white. The Rancho Sisquoc Sauvignon Blanc is a well-balanced soft wine that does not have a strong tannic finish.
We tasted a few other of their whites and reds and I was impressed with their Syrah and Malbec. However, the winner was the accessible Sauvignon Blanc. I am looking forward to opening it up on a Sunday late afternoon and enjoying my husband’s yummy grilled shrimp tacos with an avocado mango salsa to enhance the tropical aromas in the wine or creating a creamy seafood risotto to compliment the smooth gentle oak flavor.
I highly recommend a visit to Rancho Sisquoc, it is off the beaten path, so bring a picnic basket, and sit back and enjoy the scenic ride.