Nicholas Miller of Bien Nacido Vineyards
This video is one of a series from Wine Taste T.V., where they embark on an “exploration of Santa Barbara’s finest vineyards and wineries, one sip at a time.” In this episode, Bonnie Graves visits Santa Barbara County’s most famous vineyard, the Bien Nacido Vineyards, in the Santa Maria AVA. She explains that “Bien Nacido” means “well-born,” and then lets Nicholas Miller, whose family owns the vineyard, to talk about the grape varieties grown there, and the wineries that use them to produce many of the wonderful wines produced in Santa Barbara county. The varietals he mentions are: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Merlot, Syrah, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Refosco and Nebbiolo and the wineries are: Foxen; Au Bon Climat; Qupe; Villa Mt. Eden.
But Bien Nacido Vineyards have many more clients than the few he mentions. One of the things that makes the vineyard really special, besides the fact that it is blessed with great conditions for growing a wide variety of grapes, is that the owners have a collaborative relationship with the wine makers who they supply with fruit. Rather than selling grapes by the ton, they rent out lots or even a single row to their clients, so that they have a shared interest in making sure that those particular grapes turn out to be the best they can be.
Not just Bien Nacido Vineyards but the Santa Barbara Wine Country in general, with its beautiful scenery and many excellent wineries, vineyards and tasting rooms, is a wonderful place to go on a wine tasting tour and create memories that you can treasure for a lifetime. For tips on which are the best wineries to visit on a Santa Barbara wine tour, just click on the link.