10 Best Wine Bars in Santa Barbara: Sit and Sip Awhile

Here in Santa Barbara we may not have any champagne bars and we may not have any piano bars, but what we do have... well, we have wine bars. Excellent bars that pour (local) wine by the glass that you'll be dreaming of long after your stay. Pinots, Sauvignon Blancs, Cabernets, you can try them all if you just know where to go.

Fortunately, here at 10Best we know exactly what an explorer like you wants from a wine bar - local, affordable and choc full of friendly strangers. This list has plenty of venues to suit your uncompromising needs. Do you want to be downtown? Try Wine + Beer for a great selection and fun night out. Feel like sampling local varietals somewhere luxe and a little intimate? Then Les Marchands is your place.

Whether you're overnighting within Santa Barbara city limits or visiting one of our beloved neighbors, this list will help you find the place that's just right for you. Staying in Goleta for business? The Mercury Lounge is where you'll want to "wine" down after a long workday. 

Just be sure to make note of your favorite glasses and bottles wherever you go. Many area vineyards have their own tasting rooms or offer their wines for sale at local merchants. Taking home a bottle of your favorite wine is the best souvenir!



Yes, Sly's is a fantastic steak and seafood restaurant, but - what most people don't know - is that it's also a great place to stop in for a glass, or bottle, of wine. In fact, Sly's wine list has even received the Wine Spectator "Award of...  Read More

Mercury Lounge
Photo courtesy of Mercury Lounge


Sometimes you want to get away from it all... all the downtown noise, crowds and traffic. For times like these, head to Goleta and pay a visit to the Mercury Lounge. A hidden gem in an unassuming strip mall, the Mercury is something of a haven,...  Read More



This wine bar in downtown Santa Barbara is owned by the same lovely people who run Vino Divino, a local wine shop that has been operating for over a decade. Villa Wine bar and Kitchen serves wine and craft beer by the glass and has a small food...  Read More



Although the Hitching Post II may have achieved international fame when it was featured in the film Sideways, it has always been a favorite of Santa Barbara locals. The Hitching Post specializes in their own Hitching Post wines made from Central...  Read More



Intermezzo is a fun little wine bar with the added benefit of food! If you're in the mood for something good but don't know what to choose - perhaps you're hungry, but your date isn't, or you want wine, but your companion wants a cocktail -...  Read More

Municipal Winemakers
Photo courtesy of Municipal Winemakers


For Municipal Winemakers, a wine bar and tasting room in the Santa Barbara Funk Zone, winemaker Dave Potter creates bottles that are both delicious and easily guzzled. Wines you'll want to bring to your friends' houses and buy by the case to...  Read More

Armada Wine & Beer Merchant
Photo courtesy of Geneva Ives


Armada is a beer and wine bar with a fun assortment of craft beverages from near, far and everywhere in between. This hidden gem is tucked just behind the main shopping area of State Street in downtown Santa Barbara. It's an ideal place to catch...  Read More



Wine + Beer is a great wine and beer bar and shop located in the Santa Barbara Public Market, a collection of stores and restaurants gathered under one roof in downtown Santa Barbara. This is a wonderful place to go and meet friends, sip wine by...  Read More



A fun wine bar and merchant located in the heart of Santa Barbara's Funk Zone, Les Marchands offers a mix of local and international wines for tasting and for sale. There is also a menu with a selection of elegant nibbles, like a sandwich au...  Read More


Meet Geneva Ives

Geneva Ives moved to Santa Barbara in 2000 on a whim (ok, and to go to college) and never looked back. She loves Santa Barbara because it’s really one of America’s greatest small towns - it...  More About Geneva