If you jump in your car and drive just ninety miles north of Los Angeles, or about thirty miles from Santa Barbara, you will find another great little wine region. Ojai is accessible as an easy day trip from these and other nearby cities. Making this little town a fantastic weekend trip complete with wineries, art galleries, shops, delightful lunch spots, and restaurants.
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You Are Almost There
As you near your destination, you will be greeted by the luring mountains and the citrus groves along the valley floor. There are olive orchards, orange and lemon trees, and sprawling family ranches. And vineyards surrounding it all. This community has quite a bit to offer for those who travel to this little community.
The downtown area was rebuilt in 1917 after a fire wiped out most of the original town but the buildings have been converted into modern storefronts for dozens of little shops, restaurants, and wine-tasting rooms along the town's main street. This charming town is in Ventura County and is known for its artistic community and relaxed atmosphere. Ojai is known for its relaxed and tranquil atmosphere, making it an ideal destination for a peaceful getaway. Enjoy the natural beauty and artistic culture of this charming California town.
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Ojai Farmers' Market: If you are in town on a Sunday morning, do not miss the Ojai Certified Farmers' Market, where you can buy fresh produce, local crafts, and artisanal products.
Here are some things you might want to do when you visit Ojai:
Ojai Valley Trail: Enjoy a leisurely walk or bike ride along the Ojai Valley Trail, which offers scenic views of the surrounding mountains and citrus groves.
Ojai Valley Museum: Learn about the history and culture of the Ojai Valley through the exhibits and artifacts at the Ojai Valley Museum.
Libbey Park: This central park is a great spot for picnics and relaxation. It also hosts various events and festivals throughout the year.
woman viewing paintings
Art Galleries: Ojai has a thriving arts community, and you can explore numerous art galleries displaying the work of local artists.
Ojai Olive Oil Company: Take a tour of the Ojai Olive Oil Company and sample some of their delicious olive oils and balsamic vinegars.
Los Padres National Forest: If you enjoy outdoor activities, the Los Padres National Forest is nearby, offering hiking, camping, and nature exploration opportunities.
Ojai Trolley: Consider taking a ride on the Ojai Trolley, which provides a fun and unique way to explore the town.
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Spa and Wellness Retreats: Ojai is known for its spa and wellness offerings. You can indulge in rejuvenating spa treatments and yoga retreats at various locations around town.
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Ojai Music Festival: If you are in Ojai during the Ojai Music Festival season, it is an excellent opportunity to enjoy classical music performances.
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Taste Local Cuisine: Ojai offers a variety of dining options, ranging from farm-to-table restaurants to cozy cafes. Try some of the local cuisine and enjoy the fresh, seasonal ingredients.
This little community is known for its enchanting wineries and vineyards with their relaxed and scenic setting for wine tasting and charming weekend getaways.
two women at table enjoying wine
Wine Tasting in Ojai
Here are a few wineries and tasting rooms you can explore when you visit:
Ojai Vineyard: The Ojai Vineyard has been producing wines since 1983 and is known for producing small-batch, high-quality wines. You can sample a variety of their wines, including Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Rhône-style blends. The tasting room is a redesigned colonial-style building near the end of the downtown.
A good indicator of what is in store is the fact that the room is always full of tasters, sipping, and swirling. It is easy to become mesmerized by the sheer number of bottles that line the back wall. But it is not just all for show. There are three hundred different wines that can be bought or enjoyed at the tasting room. A typical tasting flight at The Ojai Vineyard includes five wines. Be sure to taste their Syrah, but they also have fantastic, aged Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and more. They do not serve food, but you can bring your own to enjoy with your wines.
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Topa Mountain Winery: Topa Mountain Winery is a picturesque winery that offers tastings, live music events, and a beautiful setting with mountain views. They produce a variety of wines. Be sure to try their Syrah, Grenache, and Viognier.
Old Creek Ranch Winery: This is a family-owned winery that focuses on producing estate-grown, organic wines. They offer tastings in a rustic and scenic setting.
Boccali Vineyards and Winery: At this winery, you can enjoy wine and delicious Italian cuisine. They produce a range of wines that you can enjoy as you relax on the patio with your glass of wine and take in the views of the vineyards.
The Vine (Tasting Room): The Vine is a wine-tasting room in downtown Ojai that features a selection of local wines, making it a convenient place to explore multiple Ojai wineries' offerings in one location.
Remember that wine tasting in Ojai can be a fantastic way to take in the local flavors and the beautiful surroundings. Be sure to check the wineries' websites or contact them directly for the most up-to-date information on tasting hours, reservations, and any special events or tours they may offer.
painting of people at winery
Where to Dine While Visiting
Ojai California, offers a variety of dining options, ranging from farm-to-table restaurants to casual cafes. Here are some wonderful places to dine while in Ojai:
Osteria Monte Grappa: This Italian restaurant is known for its delicious pasta dishes, wood-fired pizzas, and a fine selection of wines. It offers a cozy and romantic atmosphere.
Azu Restaurant & Bar: Azu serves Mediterranean-inspired cuisine and offers a broad selection of tapas, local wines, and craft cocktails. The outdoor patio is a lovely place to dine.
Nocciola: A farm-to-table restaurant, Nocciola focuses on locally sourced ingredients and offers a seasonal menu. The cozy setting and attentive service make it an excellent choice for a special meal.
The Farmer and the Cook: This casual eatery specializes in organic, vegetarian, and vegan dishes. It is a popular spot for breakfast, lunch, or a quick snack, and it also features a market with organic products.
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Rotie: Ojai Rotie is known for its delicious rotisserie chicken and flavorful Mediterranean-style dishes. The casual, family-friendly atmosphere is perfect for a relaxed meal.
Osteria La Montagna: This Italian restaurant offers a range of traditional dishes, including pasta and seafood. The outdoor patio is a charming spot to enjoy your meal.
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Knead Baking Company: For delicious baked goods and breakfast or lunch, Knead Baking Company is a local favorite. Their fresh bread, pastries, and sandwiches are excellent.
Deer Lodge: A historic Ojai establishment, the Deer Lodge offers a rustic atmosphere and a menu featuring comfort food, barbecue, and a selection of craft beers. It is also known for its live music.
The Nest of Ojai: This restaurant specializes in fresh, seasonal cuisine with an ever-changing menu. The elegant dining room and the patio offer a lovely setting for a special meal.
Bonnie Lu's Country Café: A classic American diner, Bonnie Lu's is a beloved spot for breakfast and brunch. You can enjoy traditional American fare like pancakes, omelets, and biscuits and gravy.
Jim and Rob's Fresh Grill: This family-friendly grill serves a variety of dishes, including burgers, sandwiches, and salads. It is a great place for a casual and tasty meal.
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Ojai Beverage Company: While primarily a craft beer and wine shop, OBC offers a pub-style menu with burgers, sandwiches, and bar bites to accompany your drinks.
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Keep in mind that some restaurants in Ojai have seasonal menus or limited hours, so it is a clever idea to check their websites or call ahead for reservations or the latest information. Ojai's dining scene is diverse, offering something for every palate, from casual eateries to upscale dining experiences.
Artwork courtesy of Agata Art Gallery - Gallery | Agata Art Gallery