A long-standing member of the Santa Barbara winemaking community, Whitcraft Winery is obsessed with producing the highest quality wines. Signature varietals include Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Syrah, and they also produce a variety of other unique, handcrafted wines.
Chris and Kathleen Whitcraft started Whitcraft Winery in 1985. Chris hosted a local wine radio program in Santa Barbara County for more than ten years and learned his craft from some of the best winemakers in California - Joe Heitz (Heitz Cellars), Dick Graff (Founded Chalone Winery and its AVA), and Burt Williams (Williams Selyem & Morning Dew Ranch) to name a few.
This passion for wine was passed on to their children, Drake and Alyssa. While Chris passed in 2014, Drake continues to carry on the tradition of excellent winemaking within the Whitcraft family.
Meet Winemaker, Drake Whitcraft:
Q: How did you start your business?
A: My father and mother started it in 1985, my father ran a wine shop in Montecito and loved wine. He started making it in the 70's and started Whitcraft in 1985.
Q: What makes you the most passionate about your work?
A: What makes me passionate is a deep respect for the planet and its gifts that we enjoy and unfortunately take for granted a lot, and a desire to make wine I like to drink and that I think my mentors would like to drink.
Q: What is your favorite aspect of what you do?
A: Sampling, and all the time off... Just kidding, it's the rewarding feeling of releasing a wine I spent over a year making.
Q: What makes your wine different?
A: As far as why my wine is different, shorter ferments than most in smaller vessels, cooler temps. More attention to detail since I don't make much wine. They are never pumped. Unadulterated.
Q: What are you making right now that is not to be missed?
A: Gamay is very hot, but whats not to be missed are my vineyard designate wine of any Varietal.
Q: Location? Contact & social media?
36 S Calle Cesar Chavez, Santa Barbara
Instagram: @drakewhitcraft and @whitcraftwinery
Q: Where can we find you on a weekend or your day off?
A: My yard!
Q: Connection to Santa Barbara, why do you work/live here?
A: I grew up here and love the area, it is so beautiful and has so much to offer.