Wine Tasting: Lafond Winery and Vineyards

Winery/Producer: Lafond Winery & Vineyards; 6855 Santa Rosa Road; Buellton, California

Appellation: Santa Yenz Valley, Santa Rita Hills

Tasting Room and Location: 5.5 miles west of U.S. 101 via Santa Rosa Road exit.

Grape Variety Tasted:

    2011 Santa Rita Hills Riesling
    2011 Santa Rita Hills Chardonnay
    2010 Santa Rita Hills Pinot Noir
    2009 Arita Hills Vineyard Pinot Noir
    2010 Santa Rita Hills Syrah

Tasting Price: $5.00

Knowledge and Helpfulness of the Person Pouring the Wine: In addition to being very friendly and helpful the Lafond hostess was a native of the area and gave us information and recommendations about many interesting Santa Ynez Valley sites. Her knowledge of the wine was pretty much limited to the winery’s one-page handout for each wine.

Recommendation from the tasting: Outstanding wine and tasting facility. Lafond should not be missed when in this part of Santa Barbara County.

Comments: The Lafond Vineyard is located in the Santa Rita Hills along the banks of the Santa Yenz River. Like the Alma Rosa Vineyard, the setting is picture perfect with vineyards planted in the valley surrounded by the rolling hills dotted with California live oak trees. The modern tasting room, which opened in 2001 provides a wonderful Mediterranean-style wine gift shop stocked with works by local artisans, oils, vinegars, clothing, books and gourmet foods. We were there on a week day and the tasting was very relaxed and enjoyable. There were only a few other people drinking wine on the patio next to the tasting room

All the wines we tasted were exceptional and the two Pinot Noir’s were nothing short of outstanding. In the end we purchased the Santa Rita Hills Riesling, a dry Reisling, and the soft and supple Arita Hills Vineyard Pinot Noir.

And, last a special note about buying wine directly from the Winery. Lafond has $9.50 flat rate shipping anywhere in the United States (to states that permit wine shipments).