White Wine Summer in Santa Barbara Wine County
By Jamie Knee   |   July 16, 2024

Sunshine, sandals, and sipping something cool – that’s the ultimate summer trifecta, right? As your proud Santa Barbara wine expert and self-proclaimed white wine enthusiast, I’m here to declare this the summer of white wine! Forget the stuffiness of reds – white wines are light, refreshing, and bursting with flavor, the perfect partner for all […]

Santa Barbara’s Spirit of Giving Takes Center Court
By Jamie Knee   |   July 2, 2024

Santa Barbara’s spirit of giving back permeates every corner, a truth I constantly witness as a writer chronicling the vibrant lifestyles of our community. This truth shines brightly in Ajay Mitchell, a local sports hero who isn’t just electrifying audiences with his performance for the UCSB Gauchos, but also leaving a lasting impression through his […]

A Season for Santa Barbara Baseball
By Jamie Knee   |   June 11, 2024

This week, UCSB Baseball will make history by hosting an NCAA regional tournament for the first time. The Gauchos’ remarkable journey this season goes beyond wins and losses; it’s a testament to resilience and the indomitable human spirit. Despite facing challenges that could have derailed many teams, these obstacles only strengthened their bond and galvanized […]

Chasing Fire and Flavor: Wine Tasting on the Slopes of Mount Etna
By Jamie Knee   |   June 4, 2024

As summer approaches, the allure of Sicily beckons more travelers, especially following the buzz generated by the show White Lotus. This enchanting island off the southern coast of Italy offers an intoxicating blend of history, culture, and breathtaking landscapes. In the captivating setting of the shimmering turquoise Mediterranean Sea, fragrant citrus groves, and the dramatic […]

A Weeklong Celebration at the Santa Barbara Culinary Experience
By Jamie Knee   |   May 21, 2024

Dust off your beret and get ready for a week of pure epicurean delight! The Taste of Santa Barbara, presented by the Santa Barbara Culinary Experience, is back, promising a whirlwind adventure for your taste buds from May 13 to 19. Imagine this: basking in the golden glow of the Santa Barbara sun, sipping on […]

Discovering Wine Treasures Along the Dalmatian Coastline
By Jamie Knee   |   May 7, 2024

Picture yourself anchored off the breathtaking Croatian coastline, surrounded by waters so clear and azure that they defy belief. As the warm sunlight caresses your skin, you raise a glass of local wine to your lips, its crispness a delightful contrast to the Mediterranean air. Before you, the horizon unfolds revealing a tapestry of islands, […]

Picpoul de Pinet: Sipping the Maritime Charms of the Languedoc
By Jamie Knee   |   April 9, 2024

Embarking on a recent escapade to the sun-kissed Languedoc region in southern France was like stepping into a masterpiece painted with historic cities, awe-inspiring landscapes, and a cultural tapestry woven with richness. The Languedoc AOC (Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée) wine region has transformed from a hub of bulk production wines to a powerhouse crafting high-quality gems. […]

Uncorking Rioja: A Wine Journey Like No Other
By Jamie Knee   |   March 12, 2024

As I set foot into the legendary Rioja wine region, I knew I was about to embark on a journey like no other. After enduring countless delays, my long-awaited adventure – to Rioja, Spain, for the prestigious Rioja Wine Educator Certification Course – felt like a triumphant victory. Nestled in the heart of Spain, Rioja […]

A Journey of Resilience and Reinvention
By Jamie Knee   |   March 12, 2024

You may know her name from her time on The Girls Next Door or perhaps from her show Kendra Sells Hollywood. But there’s much more to Kendra Wilkinson than meets the eye. Beyond the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, Kendra’s story is one of resilience, reinvention, and compassion. As a single hands-on mother of two, […]

Strengthening Democracy Through Public Media
By Jamie Knee   |   March 12, 2024

This past Wednesday evening in Montecito, approximately 60 engaged local community members gathered for a vital conversation about the future of democracy and the role of public media. Hosted in an intellectually stimulating setting, the event aimed to explore how public media outlets like NPR contribute to our understanding of complex issues and navigate the […]

Crafting Red Wines and Sipping Santa Barbara’s Pinot Noir
By Jamie Knee   |   February 13, 2024

As winter sweeps into Santa Barbara, its crisp touch ignites an irresistible craving for soul warming meals, and the perfect wines to match. Embracing hearty pastas, savory stews, and dishes that stick to your ribs, this season demands the company of bold, full-bodied red wines. Many of us savor the richness of red wine, understanding […]

Exploring the Enigmatic World of Balkan Wines in North Macedonia
By Jamie Knee   |   January 16, 2024

I’ve just returned from the captivating landscapes of North Macedonia, brimming with excitement to unravel the hidden marvels of this Balkan gem. Picture a land where time slows down, where over 50 lakes sparkle like gems against a backdrop of 34 towering mountains, ranking seventh among the 10 most mountainous countries in the world. Traversing […]

An Evening with Jay Leno
By Jamie Knee   |   December 26, 2023

On Thursday, December 14, it was a memorable evening in Montecito. The Rosewood Miramar Beach Hotel turned into a radiant stage, hosting an unforgettable event – An Evening with Jay Leno: A Celebration of the Turner Foundation’s 65 Years of Service.  The gala commenced with a welcome and introductions by John Davies, whose words ushered […]

Mexico’s Hidden Wine Treasures
By Jamie Knee   |   December 26, 2023

As I reflect on my recent journey through the captivating landscapes of Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, a vibrant tapestry of wine, food, and travel experiences weaves itself through my memories. This region, rich in natural beauty, unfolds a compelling invitation to explore at every juncture. Its picturesque beaches tell stories of tranquility and wonder, providing serene […]

Lombardy Unveiled: An Adventurous Escapade of Wine, Elegance, and Enchantment
By Jamie Knee   |   December 19, 2023

Maybe you’ve seen everyone’s Facebook and Instagram feeds covered in pictures of this summer’s European travels. Well, mine was no exception as I recently returned from a wine, food, and travel extravaganza in the Lombardy region of Italy. I genuinely believe that wanderlust is a part of my genetic makeup. There’s an unparalleled exhilaration in […]

Santa Maria Valley: A Wine and Fun-Filled Weekend Escape for Santa Barbara Locals
By Jamie Knee   |   December 12, 2023

As a wine and travel writer, I’ve had the privilege of exploring some of California’s most charming wine regions. However, I recently stumbled upon a hidden gem a mere hour’s drive from Santa Barbara but a world away in terms of experiences: Santa Maria Valley.  With 34 tasting rooms, over 50 restaurants, and unique attractions […]

A Wine Guide for a Joyful Season
By Jamie Knee   |   November 21, 2023

The holidays are upon us, and it’s a time of delightful chaos. There’s the turkey to roast, gifts to hunt down, parties to attend, and family clamoring for an invite to the American Riviera for the holidays. As a local Montecito wine specialist, clients often turn to me to curate their wine pairings for festive […]

Sipping Success and Inclusivity A Toast to Central Coast Women in Wine
By Jamie Knee   |   November 21, 2023

On Wednesday, November 1, the inaugural event of Central Coast Women in Wine (CCWW) at La Lieff Wines unfolded as a remarkable evening of celebration and empowerment. The event was hosted by Founders Gretchen Lieff, La Lieff Wines and myself, Jamie Knee (Petite Wine Traveler), sharing a deep passion for the world of wine, and […]

La Lieff Wines: A Community Gathering Spot for All
By Jamie Knee   |   November 7, 2023

Nestled in the heart of Santa Barbara’s vibrant Funk Zone is La Lieff Wines, a place where wine meets community and everyone is welcomed with open arms. I had the pleasure of sitting down with my close friend Gretchen Lieff, the proprietor and owner of La Lieff Wines, to delve into her journey, the challenges […]

How I Fell in Love with Chardonnay A Journey Worth Savoring
By Jamie Knee   |   October 31, 2023

As a wine educator, I’ve often encountered wine enthusiasts staunchly proclaiming their allegiance to the “Anything but Chardonnay” (ABC) camp, convinced that chardonnay is simply not their cup of… well, wine. But what if I told you that a transformative experience awaited you in France in a quaint corner of northern Burgundy? Here, in the […]

An Enchanting Viticultural Voyage through Croatia’s Istrian Peninsula
By Jamie Knee   |   September 12, 2023

My husband and I were thrilled when I was chosen to be a judge at the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles, hosted this year by Vinistra, the Association of Winegrowers and Winemakers of the Istrian Peninsula in Croatia. Returning to Croatia, one of our cherished travel destinations from a decade ago, was a dream come true. […]

Petite Wine Traveler. Unveiling the Treasures: Discovering Tri-Valley
By Jamie Knee   |   August 29, 2023

With summer in full swing, my husband, our chihuahua, and I embarked on a thrilling road trip from Santa Barbara to the Tri-Valley area. The Tri-Valley is a triangular-shaped region just 35 miles east of San Francisco. From the top of Mount Diablo, you can see the three valleys that give the region its name, […]

Unveiling the Charms of Santa Barbara Wine Country
By Jamie Knee   |   July 25, 2023

Living in Santa Barbara wine country is a stroke of good fortune for wine enthusiasts and connoisseurs alike. Crowned the wine region of the year in 2021 by Wine Enthusiast Magazine, this beautiful area offers a delightful blend of scenic landscapes, exceptional wines, and a thriving wine culture. Nestled along the Central Coast of California, […]

The New Darling of Sparkling Wines
By Jamie Knee   |   June 27, 2023

Everyone’s heard of Champagne, and most people have heard of Prosecco, but the new darling in the world of sparkling wine is Cava. This delicious bubbly from Penedès, Spain, is actually not so new, having been discovered in the late 1800s. For those who are unfamiliar with Cava, it’s a sparkling wine that’s made using […]