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The 3 best spots to get gourmet coffee in Santa Ynez

14 Oct 2013 10:58 AM
The 3 best spots to get gourmet coffee in Santa Ynez

While the Santa Ynez area has traditionally garnered international attention for its fine wines and upscale vineyards, another commodity residents of this scenic California town enjoy drinking is gourmet coffee. While the beans may be imported, they're roasted and brewed locally at a number of establishments that routinely receive praise from both customers and critics.

During weekdays - but especially on weekends - these businesses can be found packed with local coffee lovers, whether they are successful business leaders holding important meetings, owners of nearby luxury real estate tasting the newest blends or just students looking for a quick caffeine fix. If you are planning an extended tour of the Santa Ynez area, or will be passing through on a trip down the coast, you may want to stop into one of these three upscale establishments to sample the many flavors offered. 

Valley Grind
Located in downtown Santa Ynez, this full service coffee house treats each of its clients like family. The decor is decidedly cozy, as the wooden tables and walls are complemented by steel accents and the friendly staff cater to customers' desires and special requests. As visitors pass through the business' entrance on Sagunto Street, they are greeted with the enticing aroma of freshly ground beans and are often taken aback at the lengthy list of available offerings. Popular orders include the frozen chai and fresh fruit smoothies, as well as the iced almond latte with agave. Those looking for additional sustenance can order a multitude of bagel sandwiches and farm-to-table quiches.

Santa Ynez Valley Coffee Company
This local coffee house, which was recognized as the area's best last year by the Santa Ynez Valley News, has been a local fixture for some time. Owners Terry and Stephanie Larrabee have transformed this modest space, located in a shopping center on Alamo Pintado Road, into a high-class destination for discerning coffee connoisseurs. Those seeking more than just a cappuccino can enjoy ordering from a lengthy menu of light fare and eclectic sandwich combinations. In addition to the classic and gourmet blends, the business offers specialty drinks - such as the raspberry truffle mocha and cinnamon roll latte.

The Longhorn Coffee Shop
This no-nonsense eatery serves up strong coffee and hearty meals in the inviting atmosphere of its location on Sagunto Street in Santa Ynez. A favorite stop for many locals, this establishment's portions leave few hungry and its coffee selection never disappoints. Its western theme is completed with an inviting staff and numerous beverage options.