I’m impatient for Hospice du Rhône, and thoroughly enjoying planning my trip to Paso Robles. Also this week, three different people asked me for a list of wineries I like in Paso Robles. None of them know each other, and none of them are going to HdR. I hope this means that one of my favorite wine regions is finally getting the attention it deserves!
Anyway, since I made a list for them, I might as well make it public. This is an idiosyncratic list – and deliberately in alphabetical order rather than ranked. I have no doubt I’m leaving off many great places, and certainly I haven’t been everywhere there is in the region. Please do use the comments to tell me your favorites….
Alta Colina Vineyard & Winery
Small producer of Rhône varietals and blends. Relatively new – their first harvest was in 2007. I especially love the Toasted Slope Syrah.
Thursday to Sunday, 11:00am to 5:00pm. 2725 Adelaida Rd. Paso Robles, CA 93446. 805 227-4191. http://www.altacolinawine.com/
A two-man operation (father and son), making mostly Italian varietals. Great value for the price. All wines are unfined and unfiltered. So far in my experience their wines age very well. (My dad’s in their wine club, so I mooch from him.)
Open for tasting (including barrel samples) daily 11 a.m.- 5 p.m. 2280 San Marcos Road, Paso Robles, CA 93446. 805.467.3827. http://www.caparone.com/
Kenneth Volk Vineyards
A favorite of mine in the Santa Barbara area, and a favorite in Paso Robles as well. Ken Volk describes himself as “an innovating traditionalist”. They make a large variety of wines – from Paso Robles they’re making Bordeaux varietals. They share the property with Lone Madrone – if you take your Lone Madrone glass with you they will give you a 50% discount on your tasting fee. (I love that they have a customizable wine club.)
10:30 am – 5 pm daily. 2485 Highway 46 West, Paso Robles, CA 93446. 805.237.7896. http://www.volkwines.com/
Lone Madrone tasting room
A wide variety of wines, and a gorgeous tasting room surrounded by the herb and flower nursery, Fat Cat Farms. You are welcome to bring a picnic and enjoy the atmosphere. They share the property with Kenneth Volk.
Open daily 10:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. 2485 Highway 46 West, Paso Robles, CA 93446. 805.238.0845. http://www.lonemadrone.com/
Hilltop Vineyard, Opolo
One of my favorite places to visit. In addition to very good wine, they have a wood-fired oven. For very little money, you can get a pizza or the house-made sausage and a glass or bottle of wine and enjoy lunch on the patio. Plan your visit for when you’re hungry!
Open daily 10 a.m.-5 p.m. 7110 Vineyard Drive, Paso Robles, CA 93446, 4.8 miles north on Vineyard Drive from Hwy. 46 West. 805.238.9593. http://www.opolo.com/
Pipestone’s horses, at harvest
A small family winery, they produce estate grown Rhône-style wines from Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre, & Viognier and a dry farmed Zinfandel. They farm according to principles of Feng Shui. In addition, they are solar powered, a Certified Wildlife Habitat and have a zero landfill program. Their vineyard is even farmed with a team of draft horses!
Thursday-Monday 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. 2040 Niderer Road, Paso Robles, CA 93446. 805.227.6385. http://www.pipestonevineyards.com/
Proulx’s tasting room
Actually I’ve never been to their tasting room. However, I really like what they poured at Rhône Rangers in San Francisco. They’re on my list to visit next time I’m in Paso!
Thursday – Monday 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. 5424 Vineyard Drive Paso Robles, CA 93445. 805.706.0425. http://www.proulxwines.com/
Tablas Creek Vineyard
Tablas Creek Vineyard is the result of a decades-long friendship between the Perrin family of Château de Beaucastel and Robert Haas, longtime importer and founder of Vineyard Brands. They are almost all about Rhône grapes, but they also one of the very few California wineries to grow Tannat and Vermentino. I’m never disappointed by my wine club shipment.
10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; free tours daily by appointment. 9339 Adelaida Road, Paso Robles, CA 93446. 805.237.1231. http://www.tablascreek.com/
For another post: eating and sleeping….