POSTED ON June 9, 2013 | IN Activities, Wine News | BY Joe Becerra

At the conclusion of the 2013 Wine Bloggers Conference in Penticton, British Columbia, on Saturday, June 8th, it was announced that Santa Barbara wine country has been selected to host the 7th annual North American Wine Bloggers Conference for 2014. The conference will be held at the Santa Ynez Marriott Hotel in Buellton from July 11 to 13th.

Bloggers a larger impact than the “Sideways” movie?

Until the movie “Sideways” came out in 2004, this area of Santa Barbara had been best known for the Anderson Split Pea Soup factory and for the Danish town of Solvang. How fitting that the Santa Barbara Wine Bloggers Conference will be held on the tenth anniversary of the movie. The movie featured the Santa Barbara wine country as the characters of Miles and Jack moved from winery to winery in search of Pinot Noir. The movie had such a following that it had an enormous effect on Pinot Noir. Because it was so esteemed in the movie, Pinot Noir sales were carried to new heights and higher prices followed. A negative mention of Merlot in the movie did just the opposite for that varietal, with popularity of the grape plummeting. When the movie was released there were five tasting rooms in Los Olivos, the center of this wine country. Today, there are 27 tasting rooms alone in the town. “Sideways” had a huge effect on the popularity of this area. Now comes perhaps an even greater influence, the 2014 North American Wine Bloggers Conference.

There are expected to be 350 attendees at this conference. Most of these attendees not only blog, but tweet copiously, post to Facebook, Google+ and Pinterest. They won’t be doing this just during the conference, but also for months before and long after the conference. As we write this post, the Tweeter feeds and Facebook posts are making their way throughout the digital wine community. This is an absolute bonanza for the Santa Barbara Wine Country Association. It will bring more attention to wine lovers around the globe to the many varietals and styles of wine that are produced in this area of the four separate AVA’s of Santa Barbara.

Watch this two-minute video to gain a perspective of the San Barbara wine country and what it has to offer to wine lovers around the globe.


  1. Jo says

    Cool Conference. But I guess it is for US-Bloggers only. I’m a Wine Blogger from Germany and interested in global networking – especially in californian wine.

    • joe says

      We will be attending the European Wine Bloggers Conference in Spain. I see no reason why you could not attend the Santa Barbara Conference. Go to the wineblogger conference website and inquire. I hope to see you in Santa Barbara.

  2. Mary Beltran says

    This is a great introduction to what the 2014 conference could hold in store for the wine bloggers. Thanks for the “outline” that gives a us a preview about the area before we go next summer.

    • joe says

      Thanks for commenting. Santa Barbara has so many thing to offer, even a day trip to Solvang. Just kidding about that. I think the countryside is very beautiful.


  3. Michael Beltran says

    Excellent post and I am sure that local wineries will jump on the band wagon for what amounts to free PR next year. I am looking forward to tasting some out of this world Syrah from local producers in the area.

    • joe says

      I hope some of the smaller producers get a shot and hosting some of the special event outings. I find that most often the larger wineries with a bigger budget are the ones that host the big dinner functions and tours. Maybe the small wineries and join ranks.