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Garagiste ‘Southern Exposure’ Festival returns to Solvang 

Garagiste co-founders Doug Minnick and Stewart McLennan.

Garagiste co-founders Doug Minnick and Stewart McLennan.

Festival returns to vet’s hall in Solvang Feb. 10 & 11

– The Garagiste ‘Southern Exposure’ Wine Festival, returns to Solvang in Santa Ynez Valley on Feb. 10 through 11, offering rare access to over 30  small-production winemakers from the Santa Barbara County area. Tickets are now on sale here. Following on the heels of another sold-out year of events, the festival also announced its line-up for 2023, which includes Sonoma, Los Angeles, and Paso Robles.

Hosted in Solvang for the ninth time, ‘Southern Exposure’ will be held at the landmark Mission-style Veterans’ Memorial Hall on Solvang’s Mission Street.

“This charming town has a special place in our hearts, not least because it is at the center of some of the best winemaking in the world, but also because it is a beautiful and walkable place to spend a weekend –all while tasting over 150 ultra-premium, handcrafted small-lot production wines, and meeting their winemakers, under one roof,” said Garagiste Festival Co-founder Doug Minnick.

Thie year’s festival includes Garagiste’s Friday night signature “Rare & Reserve” tasting with a traditional Santa Maria-style BBQ dinner buffet on Feb. 10 and the Grand Tasting on Saturday, Feb. 11, which includes a Silent Auction filled with first-rate wine packages that benefit The Garagiste Festival Scholarship Fund at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.

Weekend Pass holders have entry into both events, along with lunch and a special Valentine’s Day treat. Sunday, Feb. 12 is the popular Garagiste Passport Day, during which several participating wineries – including some “Garagiste Graduate” wineries that have poured with Garagiste in the past but have grown larger over the years – will be offering special treats and discounts for Garagiste Festival attendees.

“We love our Solvang event,” says Minnick. “The Vet’s Hall is right in the heart of the village and makes for a fantastic casual weekend of walking the town, seeing the sights, and enjoying the many restaurants, shops, and all that Solvang has to offer. It’s a great way to get a jump on celebrating with your Valentine. And Sunday’s Passport Day is a perfect excuse to take an extra day and night in town. Call in sick if you have to – we always do!”

Southern Exposure starts the 2023 Garagiste Festival season which will bring hundreds of new wine discoveries from across California to wine lovers in Solvang, Paso Robles, Sonoma, and Los Angeles. Of the nearly 200 wineries showcased by the festival in 2022, 45 were new to the festival. The 2023 line-up, in addition to Solvang, includes: Garagiste ‘Northern Exposure’ in Sonoma (April 29), Garagiste ‘Urban Exposure’ in Los Angeles (June 17), and the ‘OG’ Festival in Paso Robles (Nov. 10-11).

The Garagiste Festival premiered in Paso Robles in 2011 and is the only wine festival that exclusively features high-quality wines from commercial California ‘garagiste’ winemakers. Unlike many other festivals, the wines are poured by the winemakers/owners themselves, offering a rare opportunity to interact with the creative forces behind the wines, while making brand-new wine discoveries. The festival expanded to the Santa Ynez Valley in 2013 to highlight the wines of Santa Barbara County and surrounding AVAs, as well as small production wineries from across California.

The 30+ winemakers scheduled to pour at the Garagiste Festival Southern Exposure include:
Camin’s 2 Dream, Costa Vinedo*, Cypher Winery, Diablo Paso, Dusty Nabor Wines, Entourage Wines, Fuil Wines*, Greyscale Wines, Hayseed and Housdon, Herrmann York Wine*, Imagine Wines, Kendric Vineyards, Kimsey Vineyard, Lepiane Wines, LePoidevin Cellars, Lions Peak Winery, MCV Wines, Montagne Russe, Montemar Winery, Pine Moutain Vineyards, RF Fine Wines, Seven Oxen Estate, Silver Wines, Steinbeck Vineyards, Sycamore Ranch, Tercero Wines, Tomi Cellars, Trixon Wine Company.*

*New Wineries

For more information and full Garagiste Festival: Southern Exposure schedule details, go to:

Tickets are limited for Garagiste Festival Southern Exposure. Garagiste Festivals always sell out in advance. To buy tickets, go to:

For breaking Garagiste Festival news and special discounts, sign-up for our free newsletter, The Dirt, at or follow on Twitter (@GaragisteFest) or Facebook.


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The news staff of the Paso Robles Daily News wrote or edited this story from local contributors and press releases. The news staff can be reached at