BUELLTON, CA – The Santa Barbara County Vintners’ Association (SBCVA) is pleased to announce that Ballard Canyon has been designated by the TTB (Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau) as Santa Barbara County’s fifth official American viticultural area (AVA) effective October 30. Ballard Canyon joins the existing AVAs of the region including Santa Ynez Valley, Sta. Rita Hills, Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara, Santa Maria Valley and the broader Santa Barbara County.
According to the TTB’s press release on September 30, “rule T.D. TTB-116, creates the establishment of the Ballard Canyon Viticultural Area. This final rule establishes the 7,800 acre Ballard Canyon viticultural area in Santa Barbara County, California. The new viticultural area, codified at 27 CFR 9.230, is entirely within the existing Santa Ynez Valley and Central Coast viticultural areas.”
Ballard Canyon, encompassing 7,800 acres, is the second AVA in the Santa Ynez Valley along with Sta. Rita Hills. The region is an integral part of the diversity within the Central Coast and Santa Barbara County designations. Varietal plantings are shared, a preponderance of Rhone varietals can be appreciated, yet Ballard is a specific and distinct sub-region producing authentic ‘terroir’ and unique wines.
According to Michael Larner, president of the Ballard Canyon Winegrowers’ Alliance, “The 18 vintners in the Ballard Canyon AVA have always recognized the unique potential of this site. We see it each year in the high quality of fruit we pick and in the fine wines we craft. We have always known that we occupy a special space at the heart of the Santa Ynez Valley and Santa Barbara County. Our efforts have now been officially recognized. The Ballard Canyon AVA represents uniquely territory-driven wines from one of the most beautiful spots in California. The fact that this good news comes in the middle of harvest, makes this a vintage we will never forget.”
Click here to read more about the other AVAs of Santa Barbara County.
Varieties Planted by Acre (Bearing) in Ballard Canyon, 2010
As reported by the members of the Ballard Canyon Winegrowers
Red wine cultivars: (Rounded to nearest acre)
Syrah: 274 Acres
Cabernet Sauvignon: 29
Cabernet Franc: 20
Petit Verdot: 5
Petite Sirah: 6
Total: 458 reported acres of bearing red wine grapes.
Region of Origin: Rhone Varietals: 76%, Bordeaux: 14%, Italian: 8%, California ‘Heritage’: 2%
White wine cultivars: (Rounded to nearest acre)
Grenache Blanc: 7
Sauvignon Blanc: 31
Malvasia Bianca: 2
Total: 83 reported acres of bearing white wine grapes.
Region of Origin: Rhone Varietals: 57%, Bordeaux: 40%, Italian: 2%
Vintners and Winegrowers of Ballard Canyon
Brownell's Viejo Vineyard
Finkle Family Vineyards
Saarloos and Sons Windmill Ranch