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Los Olivos, Santa Barbara’s Funk Zone overflow with wine tasting rooms

Wine-tasting rooms are within walking distance.
(Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

One of the things that might make the biggest difference in the future of Santa Barbara County wineries is the explosion of tasting rooms both in Los Olivos and in Santa Barbara itself.

Downtown Los Olivos now has two dozen tasting rooms, including those for Sandhi, Longoria Wines and tiny Tercero Wines. They’re all within walking distance of each other near Grand Avenue and Alamo Pintado Road, so there’s no getting in the car and trying to find remote winery sites.

In Santa Barbara, the new Funk Zone (funkzone.net), located between State and Garden streets and U.S. 101 and the ocean, can feel like one big wine tasting party, with revelers strolling from Pali Wine Co. to Au Bon Climat or Margerum Wine Co. and then on to Les Marchands Wine Bar & Merchant to sample not only Santa Barbara County wines but also hard-to-find bottles from around the world. Or over to Lucky Penny for a wood-burning pizza, or for rustic California fare from the Lark Restaurant, the best place to hit Santa Barbara in a good long while.

irene.virbila@latimes.com

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