Carr Vineyards & Winery will celebrate its 20th anniversary this fall, commemorating the milestone with an anniversary party 6-9 p.m. Sept. 14 in the winery’s Santa Barbara tasting room, 414 N. Salsipuedes St.
The event marks two decades since owner and winemaker Ryan Carr’s first vintage of Cabernet Sauvignon in 1999 — a homemade, 10-case-production wine from the Santa Ynez Valley, which lay the groundwork for his professional winemaking career.
By 2005, Carr Vineyards & Winery had grown into a 1,000-case project operating out of the shared-space winemaking facility, Cellar 205. Around the same time, Carr introduced its first white wine — a Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Gris — and Carr Pinot Noirs began earning early recognition, scoring 94 points in Wine Enthusiast magazine.
In 2007, having outgrown Cellar 205, Carr and wife Jessica Carr moved the winery from the Funk Zone to its present site, a World War II-era quonset hut on Salsipuedes Street, which also serves as the winery’s Santa Barbara tasting room.
In the years that followed, the Carrs would go on to grow the winery further, opening a second tasting room in downtown Santa Ynez. They also established a second winery, CrossHatch, where Ryan Carr is the winemaker.
Expansion of the Santa Barbara space was completed in 2018 with an outdoor patio and adjoining wine storage facility called the Wine Collector’s Room.
Today, Carr Winery produces 4,500 cases annually, specializing in Pinot Noirs, Cabernet Francs, Syrahs, and Sauvignon Blancs made from premium Santa Barbara County fruit sourced from local vineyards. Ryan Carr continues to oversee the process from start to finish.
Along with his vineyard management company, Carr has spearheaded the planting, installation and harvesting of some 200 acres of vineyards throughout the Santa Ynez Valley and surrounding AVAs.
The anniversary party, which will raise a glass to past, present and future endeavors, will include wine tastings of library selections, current releases, and wine futures; live music by the Jason Campbell Band; and bites from a local wood-fired pizza truck.
The event is open to those age 21 and older. Admission is $30 per person for the general public; $15 for wine club members. For more, visit www.carrwinery.com.
— Brenna Ritchey for Carr Vineyards & Winery.