Several bottles of wine at 101 wine Press in Prunedale

At 101 Wine Press, we’re known for two things—our authentic Santa Maria-Style BBQ and our selection of delectable local and international wines. In this blog post, we’ll discuss some of the best wines to pair with barbecue, so that you can make the most of these two renowned offerings. If you’re in the Salinas area and looking to try some authentic California fare, visit 101 Wine Press in Prunedale. We offer a wide variety of wines, craft beers, and juicy barbecue to satisfy even the pickiest palates. We also feature live music on the weekends, so that you can enjoy some local tunes alongside your unforgettable meal. No matter whether you’re stopping in for a date night or a happy hour drink with friends, 101 Wine Press is sure to satisfy. Get in touch with us today for any questions and read on for some awesome ideas about which wines to pair with barbecue.

A Match Made in Heaven

In the Salinas Valley, we know good wine. In fact, we’re world-famous for both hot- and cool-climate wines, thanks to our humid days and mild nights, along with the rich, fertile soil that has made this area a destination for farmers for centuries. We’re also famous for Santa Maria-style barbecue, a type of barbecue indigenous to Central California that features tri-tip beef and other meats cooked over an open smoking pit. At 101 Wine Press in Prunedale, our menu features a host of Santa Maria-style offerings, including smoked tri-tip sausage and more. When it comes to pairing wine with authentic Californian barbecue, there’s no better place to turn than 101 Wine Press for this match made in heaven.


Grilled meat makes a classic pairing with full-bodied red wine. The umami and higher fat in the meat balances perfectly with red wines’ natural tannins. Wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, Malbec, Tempranillo, and Rhone varietals make for a great addition to your meal. We also recommend trying some of our local, world-famous Shiraz. In a cooler climate, such as the Salinas Valley, Shiraz develops a meaty, peppery flavor that goes well with Santa Maria-style seasoning and oak smokiness. For some native flavor, try pairing one of our local reds with our smoked tri-tips meals, sandwiches, tacos, sliders, or salads. Each meal comes with a slice of garlic bread, as well as your choice of one of our delicious sides, including beans, broccoli salad, pasta salad, or house salad.


For those preferring some lighter fare, barbecue chicken makes for a lower-fat option that is still tender and delectable. You’ll want to opt for full-flavored whites and rosés, as these wines act as perfect palate cleansers and don’t overwhelm. For chicken, think herbal and sweet, in order to complement Santa Maria bbq’s distinctive spice rub. We recommend choosing a Sauvignon Blanc, rosé, Riesling, Chenin Blanc, or even a sweet, aromatic Gewürztraminer. If you simply can’t part with your red wine, try pairing one of barbecue chicken meals, sandwiches, tacos, or salads with an earthy Pinot Noir. 

Visit Us for an Authentic Salinas Valley Experience!

Looking for even more delectable barbecue and wine? Try one of our sausage appetizers, meals, or sandwiches, or our ribs, available Friday–Sunday. We also frequently offer specials, such as pulled pork tacos and sandwiches. If you’d like to learn what’s on our menu tonight, get in touch with our Prunedale restaurant now. Our staff will be happy to provide you with additional wine pairing suggestions, as well as suggestions for appetizers, sides, and desserts. Can’t decide on what to eat? Try one of our combo meals, featuring chicken, sausage, and/or tri-tip for a taste of everything that the Salinas Valley has to offer. If you’re looking for an authentic Salinas Valley experience, visit 101 Wine Press in Prunedale today!