A tip of the cowboy hat to Wine Country Minute for featuring Santa Maria Style Barbecue this week in a piece titled “California Cu’ing,” which turns the spotlight on our sizzling culinary tradition as well as the wines of the Santa Maria Valley.

Wine Country Minute is a web site and e-newsletter that helps you discover the best that the wine country has to offer, from food to travel, shopping to wine appreciation.

On the subject of Santa Maria barbecue, Wine Country Minute writes, “The meat, plus a special dry rub of salt, pepper, garlic salt…sets the regional dish apart from the standard,” adding that native pinquito beans are also essential to the experience.

They add: “Turns out the red wines from the Santa Maria Valley pair pretty well with this sort of fare. Santa Maria Valley combines California’s longest growing season with the cool ocean air off the Pacific. The result is a complex cadre of well-balanced wines. The Syrahs can boast intense black fruit, often with a peppery essence and Pinots tend toward earthy with a nice balance of red and black fruits.”

They conclude: “Next time you fire up the grill, experience a taste of the Central Coast’s wine country with Santa Maria Style barbecue.”

‘Nuff said!