Stonehouse Restaurant Unveils World's Most Extensive Château d'Yquem Collection

Billionaire Ty Warner Builds Wine Empire at San Ysidro Ranch


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Nestled in the picturesque setting of Montecito, Santa Barbara, San Ysidro Ranch's Stonehouse restaurant has just elevated its wine game to a whole new level. They've unveiled an awe-inspiring collection that features every vintage from 1887 to 2008, with some remarkable bottles dating back to 1811. This isn't just any wine list; it's a liquid timeline that tells the story of centuries-old vinous artistry.

One of the most exciting highlights is the Château d'Yquem collection, which includes fewer than 10 bottles from the legendary 1811 'comet vintage.' This vintage became a showstopper when collector Christian Vanneque shelled out £75,000 for a bottle in 2011, marking it as the world's most expensive white wine. The Stonehouse now boasts what they call 'the most extensive restaurant offering of Château d'Yquem in North America.' It's a bold claim, but given the scope and rarity of their selection, it's one that seems well earned.

For those unfamiliar, Château d'Yquem is often hailed as the pinnacle of sweet wines. Hailing from Sauternes, it's crafted from meticulously botrytised Sémillon and Sauvignon Blanc grapes, producing a wine that's nothing short of legendary. Guests at the Stonehouse can indulge in a custom Château d'Yquem tasting experience, with prices starting at $550 per head. It's an opportunity to taste history in a glass, guided by the expertise of the Stonehouse team.

Ty Warner, the billionaire behind this luxurious retreat, has made his mark not just with Beanie Babies, but with a formidable array of high-end properties. With a net worth of $6 billion, Warner's ventures span prestigious hotels and golf courses, including the Four Seasons The Biltmore in Santa Barbara and Las Ventanas al Paraiso in Mexico. His vision for San Ysidro Ranch's wine program is as grand as it is ambitious, setting a benchmark for exclusivity and luxury.

However, the journey hasn't been without its setbacks. The 2018 mudslides in Montecito dealt a severe blow, destroying the Stonehouse wine cellar and its 12,000 bottles, valued at $3 million. But the resilient team rebuilt, and the cellar now holds approximately 14,000 fine wines from across the globe. It's a testament to their dedication and passion for fine wine.

Their recent acquisitions continue to impress. In July 2021, the Stonehouse secured a 72-vintage vertical of Petrus, making it the largest restaurant collection of this elite Bordeaux in the United States. The collection includes every vintage from 1945 to 2017, featuring iconic years like 1947, 1959, 1961, and 1982. For true oenophiles, a custom Petrus tasting experience starts at $2,500 per guest, complete with personalized consultations with wine experts. It's the epitome of bespoke luxury, tailored to the preferences of the most discerning palates.

Adding another layer of charm and intrigue, the ranch recently introduced The Speakeasy at Plow & Angel, a bar inspired by the Prohibition era. This spot offers rare spirits, including the only bottle of Glenturret 50 Year Old in North America and the exclusive Balvenie Chapter 4 Collection. It's a haven for spirit enthusiasts, offering unique experiences that are hard to find anywhere else.

San Ysidro Ranch's Stonehouse restaurant is more than just a dining destination; it's a journey through the world's most exquisite wines and spirits. Whether you're a seasoned collector or a curious enthusiast, the offerings here promise a truly unforgettable experience. With Ty Warner's relentless pursuit of excellence and a team that shares his passion, the Stonehouse stands as a beacon of luxury and sophistication in the world of fine dining.

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