Sometimes you can’t help to deal with what life offers you on any given day or evening. This was one of those nights. I ordered a Hibiscus Lemonade, and a Filthy Martini from the bar. I was just settling in with my cocktails and looking over the menu when the party next to me seemed to be having a problem, the elder gal who appeared to be someone’s mother started choking. Her son attempted to do the Heimlich maneuver but failed. The gentleman sitting to my left said he knew how to do it so he proceeded to grab the choking women and pushed the food downwards instead of upwards with his powerful strong grip. The woman quickly recovered and asked where her food had gone. At this point, I was feeling faint and nauseous from this whole experience and wondered if I could get through my tasting. However, I pulled myself together and had one of the most memorable experiences I’ve had in a long time.
This is a very unique concept, what used to be Terravant Winery Restaurant had its name changed to Bottlest. Regardless, its truly a special unforgettable experience no matter how you look at it. The wine is also a really wonderful, enticing experience. There is a part of Terravant wine company where you can make your own custom wine. They have wine kiosks in which you insert a credit card in and choose from an array of options: a taste, to a half of a glass, to a full glass. In addition to this, you’ll get a taste of some of the world’s most exceptional wines.
Vlad Stojanov, General Manager/Beverage Manager, Certified Sommelier. Vlad joined Bottlest from Bacara Resort Santa Barbara, where he managed the resort’s beverage program and rebuilt the on-site restaurant’s wine cellar. Vlad’s wine and hospitality career highlights include his work in high-end, international resort locales such as Belgrade, Serbia; Montenegro and Cancún; and stateside, in Lake Tahoe and Martha’s Vineyard.
Owen Hanavan, Executive Chef, who comes to Bottlest from Santa Barbara dining phenom Barbareño, where, as Head Chef, he helped open the restaurant. Chef Hanavan’s culinary résumé includes time spent at Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara and the Michelin-starred COI Restaurant, in San Francisco, among other stops.
Refreshing: Hibiscus Lemonade, house infused hibiscus vodka, house lemonade. Sweet and sour but with a great ability to be thirst quenching at the same time.
Classis: Filthy Martini, Tito’s Vodka, optional dry vermouth, olives. Really the best martini ever, and the classic very martini large glass is what this drink is all about.
Lamb with Meatballs, potato chip, mint, phenomenal presentation, bursting with lamb flavor.
Caesar with Parmesan, rye croutons, Caesar dressing, they do a special method of getting the dressing on each leaf and you can taste every bit of it.
Beef short ribs with Carrot puree, roasted carrots, parsley, preserved Meyer lemon. Very festive and delicious, you could really have this as your entrée.
Yellowtail with Poached tuna, rice cracker, nori vinaigrette, micro cilantro, inventive and creative, for the fish lover.
Cheese board with Dried fruit, spiced nuts, pickled mustard seeds, strawberry jam. Gorgeous delivery with every bite, a new sensation, just loved this cheese plate.
NY Strip with Soubise, duck fat potato, chimichurri, crispy leeks, this is a very large portion, the crispy leeks adds on another element, and what can I say about the duck fat potatoes, yum!
Sumac Rack of Lamb with Farro, roasted beets, tzatziki, red wine sauce. My favorite dish of the evening, the combination of beets and tzatziki is off the charts, and the chops are cooked to perfection.
Wild King salmon with Beluga lentils, spring vegetables, Meyer lemon. This is another fantastic dish, with very tender wild caught salmon and the lentils are a great compliment to the sweet salmon.
Here are the Desserts I tried:
Bay Leaf Ice Cream, really an interesting concept, but a perfect way to end this glorious meal.
Seasonal Citrus Pannacotta with Poppy seed meringue, citrus compote, nice and refreshing and the poppy seed meringue goes the extra mile in winning your heart.
NV Crushed Prosecco, light effervescent went great with the yellow tail and poached tuna appetizer.
2013 Alma Rosa Chardonnay, nice light Chardonnay, ideal with the Cesar salad.
2014 Bottlest Chardonnay, you could drink this with any of the cheeses on the cheese board and be super happy.
Arcadian 2008 Chardonnay (sleepy hollow Santa Lucia Highlands). The best of the Chardonnays in my opinion, but what do I know, to each his or hers own. You would be missing something if you don’t try this with the salmon.
2014 Compilation Pinot Noir, lovely with outstanding color, I like a good Pinot with salmon but it also went well with the lamb meatballs.
2012 Compilation – Rutherford – Cabernet Sauvignon, this is a great bold Cabernet that paired great with the NY Strip steak.
2012 Coomber Family- Beckstoffer George III Vineyard – Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine is an all around meat paired wine.
2013 Bottlest – Syrah, I just loved this wine with the Lamb chops, pretty much a no brainer.
2012 Zinfandel “Full Tilt Boogie”, Ground effect. This very berry Zin, worked for me with the beef short ribs.
2012 Late Harvest Viognier, Lucas & Lewellen, not much of a desert wine drinker but it was nice with the Bay Leaf Ice Cream.
2012 Late Harvest blend “Grazia”, Svago Buono, sweet but drinkable and I would pair this with the Seasonal Citrus Pannacotta.
I firmly believe that Bottlest will cause a buzz here in the Santa Ynez valley amongst locals, tourists and soon it will be hard for people to get a reservation. It has all the makings of a top-rated restaurant; just give it some time and people will notice.
35 Industrial Way
Buellton, CA 93427