Steve and Caryn Arrowood owners and winemakers of Montemar started making wine in their garage in 1991, sourcing fruit from Santa Barbara County to Napa and making upwards of 14 barrels a year. As Garagistes, the activity was a friends and family experience that led to becoming a bonded winery in 2009. In 2012 production was increased allowing for sufficient volume (1,400 cases/year) for a tasting room. The tasting room opened in 2013 and Montemar built their own winery in time to harvest the 2015 fruit. Both the tasting room and winery are located in the Lompoc Wine Ghetto.
The Arrowood’s believe that great wine is made in the vineyard, so a significant amount of energy is focused there. Montemar sources all its fruit from top vineyards in Santa Barbara County by leasing specific blocks and controlling all aspects of farming. They have been doing this for quite some time and some of the vineyard blocks have been under their control for over 15 years. As a vineyard-driven winery, the winemaking process is very meticulous but does not vary widely within varietal so the distinctiveness of each wine is attributable to the vineyard source and year. Montemar currently produces a maximum of 1,400 cases/year, averaging less than 100 cases per lot with many small-lot bottlings available exclusively to wine club members.