By Donna Polizzi
They say great things come in small packages and the Carhartt Tasting Room.
Located at 2990A Grand Ave., in Los Olivos, is the smallest tasting room that most of us have ever seen. Los Olivos, in the Santa Ynez Valley, is home to over 50 tasting rooms, within a two square block area. It is a big bang of fruit forward pleasure, for the discriminating wine enthusiast. Their selection of reds and whites are charming, articulate and remarkably smooth.
Carhartt also has some of the most attentive pourers, of any tasting room I’ve visited in California. The staff is friendly, knowledgeable and quintessential, California laid-back. I even love the tasting room’s outdoor patio ambiance and rustic décor. It is something of a blend of Bohemia meets Tuscany…all the while situated in one of the most serene, expansive areas of California’s Central Coast.
Carhartt is a family-owned business, making delicious wine from “hand to heart”, for three generations. To truly be acquainted with the history of this family-owned winery and become familiar with their incredible varietals, I highly encourage you to join their wine club. There are four membership levels, whereby members can receive as little as two bottles a quarter, to as many as 12 bottles each quarter. They also have a Magnum Club, where, in addition to your quarterly shipments, you will, twice a year, receive a signed magnum bottle of Carhartt’s estate wine. In addition, their pick-up parties feature great food, live music and, of course, great wine.
Now, if all of that weren’t already enough, Carhartt also features their “Retreat” located at the top their vineyard. Expect spectacular views of the Santa Ynez Valley, situated between the towns of Solvang and Los Olivos. Both towns have charming boutique shops and dozens of tasting rooms, not to mention delectable pastry shops and world-class restaurants. The retreat has vaulted ceilings, wood floors, wool carpets and custom, locally built wine barrel furniture and a fireplace among its many amenities, The Carhartt Retreat accommodates six people comfortably and offers true luxury for those who choose to take advantage of this breathtaking property. Weekday rates are $550 per night, the weekend rate is $700 and requires a two-day minimum. But it’s hard to imagine how only one day would suffice.
So, do yourself a favor, come out and enjoy the spectacular views of the Santa Ynez Valley and visit Carhartt Tasting Room, but don’t forget, it’s dog-friendly. Seriously consider getting up to the Carhartt Sangiovese Vineyard and treat yourself to a day or two at their Retreat. You won’t regret it.