From the moment you enter the 105 acre property through the wrought iron gates, time seems to stand still. A grove of arched trees line the long driveway and lead to the stately entrance of the mission-style Bridlewood Estate Winery in Santa Ynez.
The grounds are immaculately groomed with unsurpassed panoramic views of the Santa Ynez Mountains, the San Raphael Mountains and the Purisma Hills. The site of the Bridlewood Estate Winery was previously a rehabilitation center for race horses and still houses a full exercise track that circles the lake and vineyards.
Guests are welcome to take a bottle of wine and a picnic lunch and relax under the shade trees by the lake or to take in the view on the upper terrace overlooking the lake.
Bridlewood Estate Winery features an eclectic selection of Central Coast AVA blends, Estate Syrah and Zinfandel and Monterey County Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Of particular note is the 2012 Reserve Viognier from Santa Barbara AVA. Wafts of honeysuckle, orange blossoms and vanilla meet the nose in this Viognier from Volgelzang Ranch in nearby Happy Canyon AVA.
The 2012 Santa Lucia Highlands Reserve Chardonnay from Monterey County Chardonnay is fruit forward with flavors of pear, honey and lemony citrus tones with a creamy, mouth-filling texture ~ an excellent pairing for shellfish, pate or fresh fruits.
On the darker side, the 2012 Santa Rita Hills Reserve Pinot Noir is spicy, yet floral with notes of cranberry, mushroom and dark cola flavors. And for the Syrah lover, the 2009 Estate Syrah has layers and layers of flavor. Aromas of licorice and spice are followed by flavors of melted chocolate and dried cherry, forming a nice, round palate.
Carriage rides are offered around the pristine property for a nominal fee. Bridlewood Estate Winery is truly a sight to behold with wines that rival the best in the Santa Ynez AVA. To plan your visit, check out www.bridlewoodwinery.com