Tasty Trip Through Santa Barbara Wine Country

8 STOPS | 122 MILES | 2 hr 41 min

The road trip from Santa Barbara to Santa Maria offers the great beef and silky wines you’d expect from the ranch and vine scenery, and there are a few surprises along the way too.

Starting in Santa Barbara initiate yourself to the area’s famous tri-tip at Shalhoob’s Funk Zone Patio. Make sure to grab some jerky here for the trip. As you wind up the San Marcos pass via the Chumash Highway make the pit stop at the historic Cold Spring Tavern to stave off car sickness and eat some incredible onion rings.

Next up is Floriano’s Mexican Food and Fresh Cuts, masters of carne asada. Get a burrito, and hit the Lompoc Wine Ghetto for some tasting. Double back for an aebelskiver and coffee break at the Solvang Restaurant in the fairy tale village of Solvang. More wine tasting and chip stuffed hot dogs are on the menu at Los Olivos. Stop by The Doggy Door and get a pesto dog.

The quaint Old-West look of Los Alamos make the charred, organic pizzas at Full of Life Flatbread and the technically impressive yet hedonistic pastries at Bob’s Well Bread an unexpected treat. You can’t leave the region without squaring off with one of Jockos’ Santa Maria style Spencer steaks. From here you can continue North, there’s a whole lot of California left to see.


Shalhoob’s Funk Zone Patio

Shalhoob's is a decades old Santa Barbara butcher shop that has recently expanded into a full outdoor bar and grill serving great burgers and tri-tip.


Cold Spring Tavern

Cold Spring Tavern is a 19th century stagecoach station that serves stand-out Santa Maria style tri-tip and thick, meaty chili.


Floriano’s Mexican Food and Fresh Cuts

Floriano's is a Santa Barbara County taqueria and butcher using prime beef to cook masterful carne asada. Its salsa bar is a treasure.


Solvang Restaurant

Solvang Restaurant is a village favorite Danish diner specializing in aebelskivers (spherical pancakes) and house made sausages.


The Doggy Door

The Doggy Door is a shack located amidst Santa Barbara’s best wine-tasting rooms. Menu: creative hot dogs topped with chips.

Must Eats

Full of Life Flatbread

Full of Life is a small town hub that uses local, organic ingredients and a blazing wood oven to fire inventive flatbread pizzas.

Must Eats

Bob’s Well Bread

Bob's is a bakery using fresh artisan bread in elegant but hearty breakfast dishes. Sweet pastries also are wonderful.


Jocko’s Steakhouse

Jocko's is an historic, rough and tumble steak house where choice cuts are grilled over live red oak, Santa Maria BBQ style.