In The Press

The Other Kind of Wine Press


KEYT TV “Lompoc winemaker donates to Return to Freedom” by Keith Carls, October 18, 2017

Wine Enthusiast, “Ready-to-Drink California Pinot Noir,” by Matt Kettman, November 4, 2014.

NPR Take Two on 89.3KPCC, “‘Sideways’: Ten years later, hit film still makes waves in Santa Ynez Valley economy,”  by Brian Watt, October 24, 2014.

Wine Enthusiast, “Top Rated American Bubbles,” November 2014.

Santa Barbara News Press, “Flying Goat: More than just a Sparkler,” by Dennis Schaefer, wine expert, May 29, 2014.

Santa Barbara News Press, “Mom Loves Pink: Six Santa Barbara Rosés for Mother’s Day” by Gabe Saglie, Senior Editor Travelzoo, May 8, 2014.

Los Angeles Times,Three L.S. Restaurants that are Musts for Mussels,” S. Irene Virbila, May 3, 2014.

Santa Maria Sun, “Vintage 2014 Brings a Multi-Sensory Wine Experience to Flying Goat Cellars,” by Joe Payne, April 8, 2014.

Crushed Grape Chonicles, “The Varied and Amazing Wines and Wineries of Santa Barbara County,”  March 22, 2014.,Sta. Rita Hills: Top Choices from One of California’s Greatest Sites,” by Richard Jennings, February 7, 2014.

Pocket Full of Liberty, “The Champagne Alternatives You Aren’t Drinking,” by Amy Otto, December 30, 2013.

KCET,  “California Wine: Bubbles for your New Year’s Eve,”  y George Yatchisin,  December 18, 2013.


footer-logo@2xFlying Goat Cellars is featured in USA Today November 4, 2013, article “Savor a Santa Barbara and Lompoc wine trail” by Brandon Hernández.


PinotFile.pop.logo  Prince of Pinot writes on his barrel tasting of Flying Goat Cellars 2012 Pinot Noir Rio Vista Vineyard in PinotFile October 26, 2013, issue “Sta. Rita Hills 2013 Wine and Fire.”

pngSanta Barbara Independent article on September 26, 2013, “Flying Goats and Trendsetting Bubblers: How Norm Yost’s Fascination with High-Acidity Pinots Led to Santa Barbara’s First Steady Sparkling Wine” by Matt Kettman.

new-times-slo-logoCooper is a superstar! Check out New Times SLO August 28, 2013, article “The pinot puppy: Flying Goat introduces a new addition to its family.

Screen Shot 2013-09-11 at 4.46.08 PMSunset Magazine September 2013 issue article “The New Wine Country, Lompoc!” features Flying Goat Cellars!

logourl CBS New York September 4, 2013, article “Travel Deals: Autumn Wine Destinations Across The Country”  features Santa Barbara County!

Santa Ynez Valley News article “Smithwick Holding Book Signing” features Wine & Culture in the Ghetto at Flying Goat Cellars.

Grape Nutz Wine Review article  “Sta. Rita Hills Northern California Road Trip -2013: 3rd Annual San Francisco Tasting” gives accolades to Flying Goat 2009 Rio Vista Vineyard “Dijon” Pinot Noir.

Screen Shot 2013-09-13 at 2.19.53 PM Touring and Tasting article “Santa Barbara County’s Must Visit Tasting Rooms”  features Flying Goat Cellars Bubbles Bar!

Screen Shot 2013-09-13 at 2.23.15 PMFive Flying Goat Cellars wines get accolades by Pinot Report in the February 15, 2013 issue.

“Flying Goat Cellars in Lompoc, whose motto is ‘Pinot and sparkling wine without pretense,’ produce an outstanding sparkling rosé called ‘Goat Bubbles.’ No pretense in that, for sure, especially for a méthode Champenoise sporting a bright red wax cap. Owner-winemaker Norm Yost makes it just like a regular rosé and ages it in French barrels before bringing on the second fermentation. Legendary Vogue editor Diana Vreeland would have swooned over its pink color. But I love its bright fruit flavors dominated by the taste of cherries. Pop the cork, pour into Champagne flutes and enjoy with a chilled seafood platter or poached salmon. This one is ready to come to the table too. And nobody should have any trouble pronouncing the name,” writes S. Irene Virbila in her article “Across the Table: The best bubbles for when a fine Champagne would just be a waste” on December 29, 2012. Read the entire article here.

“These days, Mr. Yost may well be the standard for Santa Barbara sparkling wine production.  His yearly lineup of four unique sparklers, known collectively as Goat Bubbles, has attained a type of cult status, garnering the respect of professional counterparts and the acclaim of consumers.  His Club Celebrate ships two bottles of each bubbly, which range in price from $34-$38, four times a year,” writes Gabe Saglie in his article “Local Bubbles: Sparkling Wine Production Fizzes in Santa Barbara County on December 27, 2012. Read the entire article here!

Watch The Lip commentator Sonja Magdevski interview Norm and other local winemakers from Sta. Rita Hills Winemakers Alliance discuss Wine & Fire 2012 and the appellation at

“Industrial Wine at the Lompoc Wine Ghetto” article in August 5, 2012. “In an industrial park you expect to find a printing shop, small offices, travel companies, and such. In Lompoc Wine Ghetto you will find wine tasting rooms, mixed with regular businesses….” Read the entire article here.

“Flying Goat Cellars Wine Awarded Double Gold” press release in January 12, 2012 issue.  Read the entire article here.

“Sparkling Wine From Lompoc? When Goats Fly…” Dennis Shaeffer waxes eloquent on Flying Goat in his column   Schaeffer on Wine in the December 29, 2011 issue. Also read Gabe Saglie’s related article “Tiny Bubbles: Forget Champagne. This New Year’s Eve, Resolve to Try a Sparkler From a Different Region.”

The December 2011 issue article on sparkling wines, features 2009 Goat Bubbles Blanc de Blancs on pages 92-93. Read the entire article here.

Flying Goat Cellars’ 2009 Pinot Noir Rancho Santa Rosa Vineyard ($46.00) was awarded a Double Gold at the 2012 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. This was the highest scoring Pinot Noir from a Sta. Rita Hills AVA vineyard, just shy of being a sweepstakes winner. Flying Goat’s 2009 Pinot Noir Garey Ranch Vineyard ($42.00) was awarded a Silver and 2009 Goat Bubbles Blanc de Blancs Sierra Madre Vineyard ($38.00) was awarded a Bronze. “We are thrilled that the results of this competition position us with some of the finest wines in the world and signal to consumers that we produce wines worth purchasing,” said winemaker Norm Yost. “We were a 2007 Sweepstakes winner and benefited immediately from Northern California media exposure and purchases on our website.” The 2012 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition set a new American wine competition record with 5,575 entries and 1,723 wineries. For nine consecutive years, this prestigious competition holds strong as the “Largest Competition of American Wines in the World.” Lompoc resident DeWayne Holmdahl was one of 65 judges at the competition. “I was proud to see a Lompoc winery using fruit from Sta. Rita Hills AVA score so well,” Holmdahl said. “Flying Goat and other local wineries, such as Huber and Alma Rosa, represented our local appellation with several award winning wines.” Results were announced online at and on January 6, 2012. A public tasting of these award winning wines will be at the Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center in San Francisco from 2-5 pm on February 18, 2012.

“Wisdom of the Flying Goat: Winemaker Norman Yost Hosts Holiday Open House in Lompoc Wine Ghetto.” Check out Kamilla Plambeck’s interview with Norm in the November 30, 2011 issue. Read the entire article here.

Winemaker Norman Yost named in “Who’s Who In Agriculture and Viticulture, October 14-20, 2011.

Sommelier Jesse Rodriguez recommends Flying Goat Cellars Pinot Noirs in “New Wines to Buy” in Food & Wine magazine, October 2011. Read the entire article here

The Prince of PinotA Visit by the Prince The Prince of Pinot recently visited to taste our wines, swirling and sipping our 2008 Rancho Santa Rosa and Dierberg Pinots, and our 2009 Sparkling Brut Rosé. “A humorous name but a serious winery. Veteran Santa Barbara County winemaker Norm Yost produces small lots of Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and sparkling wine from vineyards in Santa Barbara County and San Luis Obispo County. He is a true garagiste with a small winery in the Lompoc wine ghetto.” Read the entire article here

We’re very pleased that we brought home the Gold – and Best of Class at the L.A. International Wine Competition! Our 2008 Pinot Noir, Dierberg Vineyard received 95 points and Best of Class. Not to be totally outdone, our 2008 Pinot Noir, Rancho Santa Rosa also received a gold medal and 94 points and our YNOT Pinot Noir, 2009 received a silver medal.

Pinot Noir, Rancho Santa Rosa 2007 90 points! Rich and dry, with a mélange of raspberry and cherry pie, cola, red licorice, bacon and sandalwood flavors, wrapped into firm but silky tannins. Acidity is quite nice, giving the richness a clean scour. Might develop subtleties over the years, but seems best now and through 2013. — S.H. Pinot Noir, Rio Vista Vineyard, “Dijon”, 2007 Sharp in acidity and rich in cherry, black raspberry and orange flavor, this Pinot has a Lifesaver candy quality, combining sweetness with tartness. It’s dry and silky and clean, a good example of a fancy Santa Rita Pinot Noir for drinking now. 88 points — S.H.

The folks at AAA’s Westways Magazine spent a day exploring Lompoc, and while here visited the Wine Ghetto. They noted: “Have your designated driver take you to the suddenly hip industrial park known as the Wine Ghetto, where small-production wineries, like the popular Flying Goat Cellars offer tastings.” Click here for the full article!

Winemaker Norm Yost interviewed on “Year in the Vineyard with Wes Hagen Santa Rita Hills 2009 Pinot Noir Preview”

The San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition broke the records with 4,913 entries in 2010 and now in 2011, it continues to uphold the title of the “Largest Competition of American Wines in the World” with a staggering number of entries, 5,050 from 23 states. For eight consecutive years, the SFCWC is able to proclaim that it is the “Largest Wine Competition of American Wines in the World”. And out of all those entries, little old Flying Goat brought home two of the coveted silver medals – one each for our 2008 Salisbury Vineyard Pinot Noir and 2008 Rio Vista Vineyard Pinot Noir!

On January 8th, 2010, the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition concluded the annual week of judging at the Cloverdale Citrus Fairgrounds in Sonoma County, California. Over five days, 63 professional wine experts within the media, restaurant and hospitality, education, winemaking and retail wine industries tasted and evaluated a world-record breaking 4,913 entries, a number that maintains the competition’s status as the largest competition of American wines in the world. We are proud that our 2007 Pinot Noir, Dierberg Vineyard and 2008 Goat Bubbles both received silver medals!

Josh Raynolds of Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar recently tasted through our lineup and reported the following notes. We are very pleased to have been included in this very prestigious bi-monthly publication. For details on the IWC, please click here. Pinot Noir Solomon Hills Vineyard Santa Maria Valley 2006 Deep, vivid red. Musky aromas of cherry skin, dark berries, dried flowers and underbrush, with a strong spicy overtone. Lush, gently sweet cherry and black raspberry flavors provide excellent palate coverage, with orange zest and cracked pepper notes providing vivacity. Suavely blends depth and energy and finishes long, silky and sweet. This is delicious right now. 92 Pinot Noir 2a Rio Vista Vineyard Sta. Rita Hills 2006 Vivid ruby. Expressive cherry and dark berry aromas are enlivened by Asian spices and white pepper. Lush but energetic, offering sweet red and dark berry flavors framed by velvety tannins. Gains weight with air while maintaining energy and focus. Finishes long, sweet and gently spicy. This will benefit from a couple more years of aging. 91 Pinot Noir Salisbury Vineyards San Luis Obispo County 2006 Bright ruby-red. Bright cherry and black raspberry aromas are complemented by dried rose, black tea and dark chocolate. Lively cherry and dark berry flavors pick up a spicy quality with air and are firmed by dusty tannins. This rich but energetic pinot will work well with full-flavored foods, especially grilled red meats. 90 Pinot Noir Rancho Santa Rosa Vineyard Santa Rita Hills 2006 Bright red. Deep dark berry and cherry aromas are complemented by notes of underbrush and licorice. Deeper and more powerful than the Dierberg but lacking that wine’s vivacity right now. Gains freshness with air and finishes with excellent thrust and creamy persistence. This wine improved significantly with aeration. 90 Pinot Noir Dierberg Vineyards Santa Maria Valley 2006 Light, bright red. Fresh red berries and flowers on the nose, with tangy spice and white pepper notes adding complexity. Bright and racy in the mouth, offering clean red fruit flavors and good mineral snap. The brisk finish features impressive clarity and mineral snap. 90 Pinot Noir Dijon Rio Vista Vineyard Sta. Rita Hills 2006 Bright red. Rich aromas of cherry-cola, vanilla and mocha, with a subtle note of dried rose. The richest of this set of pinots, with deep cherry and plum flavors and slow-building smokiness. Dusty tannins add grip to the sweet, nicely persistent finish. 89 Goat Bubbles Rose Sparkling Wine Santa Maria Valley 2008 100% pinot noir from Solomon Hills Vineyard. Bright orange-pink, with a fine, energetic bead. Redcurrant and strawberry on the nose, with a hint of blood orange adding vivacity. Juicy red berry and citrus flavors are braced by tangy acidity, which adds good back-end cut. Very dry wine with admirable finishing clarity and lift. This is more refined and precise than a good percentage of pink Champagnes. 89 © International Wine Cellar

Pinot Noir San Luis Obispo County Salisbury Vineyard 2006 Medium-deep ruby color; complex, deep stewed dark cherry aromas with floral and pepper notes; rich, ripe, deep dark cherry flavors with pepper, herbs and smoky notes; slight tannin; good structure and balance; long finish. A bold and balanced Pinot. The Salisbury Vineyard is located in the Avila Valley near San Luis Obispo and is about a mile from the Pacific Ocean. Score: 91 Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley Dierberg Vineyard 2006 Medium-deep ruby color; complex red cherry and earthy aromas; rich, ripe red cherry flavors with spice and earthy notes; some toasty oak; good structure and balance; long finish. A rich and complex Pinot that’s great for the table. From the Dierberg Vineyard in the southern reaches of the Santa Maria Valley. Score: 90 Pinot Noir Santa Maria Valley Solomon Hills Vineyard 2006 Medium-deep ruby color; complex and deep red cherry, earth and smoky notes; rich, ripe and deep red cherry flavors with lots of interesting smoky, spicy notes; silky texture; good structure and balance; long finish. Delicious Pinot with really nice structure and great mouthfeel. Pair with grilled salmon. Score: 92 Pinot Noir Santa Rita Hills Rio Vista Vineyards Clone 2A 2006 Medium-deep ruby color; deep, spicy black cherry aromas; rich, full black cherry flavors with some tea and spice notes; silky texture; sweet oak, good structure and balance; long finish. Rich and delicious Pinot; this wine needs some time to open up and pairs well with grilled meats. Score: 92 Pinot Noir Santa Rita Hills Rio Vista Vineyards Dijon 2006 Medium-deep ruby color; deep black cherry aromas with herbal and toasty oak notes; big, rich and complex black cherry flavors; earthy, herbal notes with some tannin and toasty oak; good structure and balance; long finish. Big and rich, this Dijon bottling is a blend of clones 115, 667 and 777 from the Rio Vista Vineyard. Score: 90

Odd? The Ventura County Star recently published and article titled “Wine 101: Odd name on bottles of some fine Pinots”. No we love the article, but how can one call our kids “odd”?? Read all about it here.

Several Flying Goat wines took home medals from the Orange County Fair: 2008 Pinot Gris Sierra Madre won Silver Medal 2006 Pinot Noir Salisbury Vineyards won Gold Medal 2007 YNOT Pinot Noir won Silver Medal

The 2009 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition boasted 4,736 entries from 26 states, making it one of the largest competitions of American wines. So we are extremely pleased to report that Flying Goat Pinot Noirs have again “brought home the gold” to the Lompoc Wine Ghetto! This year, each of the three wines entered into competition brought home a medal – a bronze medal for the 2005 Pinot Noir, “Dijon” from Rio Vista Vineyard, a gold for 2006 Pinot Noir, Salisbury Vineyard in San Luis Obispo County, and a gold and BEST OF CLASS for the 2006 Pinot Noir “Clone 2A” from the Rio Vista Vineyard in Sta. Rita Hills. We’re honored!

The people from NBC’s In Wine Country stopped by while we were bottling, talked with Norm, and took a tour of the Wine Ghetto. Click here to watch the episode.

Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar newsletter is an independent and critically acclaimed publication, read by wine lovers in 50 states and 34 countries. We will thrilled to be reviewed in a recent edition: 2005 Pinot Noir, Salisbury Vineyards, San Luis Obispo County 87+ Bright red. Spicy red berries are complemented by incense and smoky vanillin oak. Tangy red fruits are given depth by vanilla and mocha, with gentle tannins contributing structure. Finishes sweet and persistent, with an echo of oak spice. There’s excellent, sweet fruit here, but the oak is just a bit strident right now. 2005 Pinot Noir, Rio Vista Vineyard Clone 2A, Sta. Rita Hills 91 Light red. Exotically perfumed aromas of strawberry, orange zest, sandalwood and cinnamon. Bright and spicy, offering sweet red berry and blood orange flavors, silky tannins and excellent mineral lift. A suave cinnamon quality builds on the long, energetic finish. This boasts impressive finesse and clarity, in a distinctly Burgundian style. 2005 Pinot Noir, Solomon Hills Vineyards, Santa Maria Valley 90+ Light, bright-hued red. Vibrant red berry aromas offer an energetic, sharply focused personality. Racy redcurrant and strawberry flavors are youthfully taut but concentrated, delivering tangy punch and finishing with impressive persistence. Gained weight and sweetness with air, suggesting that some cellar time will be rewarded. © International Wine Cellar