Wait. How do you pronounce that? Sure, Paso Robles is known for rich cabernet sauvignon and juicy zinfandel wines, but did you know Paso’s year-round growing season is also known for unique varieties you probably don’t drink everyday? If it’s been a while since you’ve tried a few fresh flavors, this is your invitation to dip a toe in Paso Robles Wine Country’s diverse terrain! With dozens of varietal offerings sure to knock your socks off, you need not go by the old standby. Cheers to taking a left turn and landing in delicious territory.
The varietal: Lagrein
Where: Pelletiere Estate
Never afraid of the dark: If you like black coffee, dark chocolate and strong favors all around, you’ll probably adore this rich and complicated wine available now at Pelletiere Estate in Paso Robles.The winery’s 2019 vintage exemplifies lagrein’s most alluring qualities: Dark plum on the palate, silky tannins and a refined finish that lingers on and on. Intimidated? Don’t be. This wine is actually a breeze to pair. Due to its acidic structure, pour it alongside something sizzling off the grill. We’re thinking pork chops, flank steak—even ribbons of savory prosciutto, if you got it. Just make sure to go with strong, intense flavors (otherwise, this bossy wine is sure to steal the show).
The varietal: Tannat
Where: Sextant Winery
Tonight we tannat: This totally underrated varietal should be on your dining room table, OK? Here’s a good one to start with: Marked by bright red fruits and lively acidity, Sextant’s 2019 tannat holds true to the varietal’s most lovely attributes: Market fresh cherries and strawberries immediately greet the nose with hints of fleshy rose petals blooming right out of the glass. Bright cranberry-like acidity opens up the palate, paired with soft and approachable tannins (this means you won’t get that bone-dry mouth feeling associated with many reds). The tasting experience ends with a strawberry jam-like finish that smacks of farmer’s market magic. Here’s to Tannat Tuesdays becoming “a thing” in your house and mine!
The varietal: Grenache
Where: Copia Vineyards
The lighter side of red: Well, gosh if we don’t love ourselves a glass of Paso-grown grenache! The best part of imbibing in this lighter-red varietal? It pairs awesomely with Thanksgiving turkey, summer tacos and spring cheese plates—yes, it’s the chameleon of Paso wines. A crowd-pleasing varietal you should be drinking all year long, you’ll find a medium-bodied red bursting with plush berry flavors and medium acidity. Copia Vineyards’ The Story—a blend of 92 percent grenache and a splash of syrah—is all about showing off this varietal’s extraordinary berry fruit notes intermixed with fennel, violets, and graphite. A touch of layered spice makes the whole package oh-so-nice!
The varietal: Riesling
Where: Tooth and Nail
Not so sweet anymore: Wait. Isn’t riesling best saved for desert? Not in Paso Robles Wine Country. Tooth and Nail Winery’s 2020 Destinata Riesling showcases how this often underestimated white can truly outshine any beverage on the table come Sunday brunch. Fresh and energetic, this offering gets the party started with aromas of peach, mango and white flower on the nose followed by fresh orchard fruit and massive brightness on the palate. The texture is characteristically viscous, but not at all oily (a healthy dose of minerality grounds the whole experience). If you weren’t a riesling fan before, you sure are now.
The varietal: Malbec
Where: Still Waters Vineyards
Enjoy now, smile later: Why save the “fancy wines” for special occasions only? If malbec is something you reserve for birthdays and anniversaries, think again. Still Waters Vineyards’ 2018 Malbec shows that this structured, luxurious red can be enjoyed anytime you like. Medium bodied and showing flavors of lush plum, red cherry, baking spices, cocoa, anise and earthy pepper, you’ll savor bold acid with moderate tannins on the palate. Serve with goat’s milk cheeses, mushroom dishes, roasted veggies and spice-rubbed meats. In other words: meet malbec, your cure to the weeknight dinner doldrums.
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This blog is written by flavor fiend Hayley Cain. Follow her @flavorslo on Instagram or at astoldbyhayley.com.
CAN WE HELP YOU FIND?
Looking for a place to stay in Paso Robles?
The Adelaide Inn is an iconic, locally-owned hotel known for its friendly staff and lush landscaping. With spacious rooms and a convenient location close to highway 101 and the event center – home of the California Mid-State Fair – this hotel is a great choice for most travelers. TOUR VIRTUALLY
Majestically set among vineyards, olive groves and fruit baring orchards, the 20-acre Allegretto Vineyard Resort is a world unto itself, offering breathtaking settings that inspire and bring joy to all who choose this memorable wine country haven. Featuring 171 rooms and suites, on-site spa, grand ballroom, wine tasting room, and inspired culinary creations at Cello, the resort’s full-service restaurant.
The GENESEO INN is a luxury boutique hotel nestled in the rolling hills of Paso Robles wine country. Built of industrial shipping crates perched above the vines on CASS Winery’s 145 acres of vineyard, the experience truly allows you to “breathe in the vineyard views.”
Hoyt Family Vineyard RetreatsTwo very cool, tiny houses, designed using fertile imagination and repurposing of materials are located on Hoyt Family Vineyard.
Hampton Inn & Suites Paso Robles is nestled in the Central Coast wine region, home to over 200 wineries, beautiful beaches, mountains and diverse attractions. Relax and revive in a comfortable guest room with all you need for a successful stay. You can count on Hampton to deliver value, consistency and service with a smile. We love having you here®
Experience the pristine countryside of Paso Robles Wine Country at chic, sparkling clean Lekai Ranch. Lounge on the porch of your private suite and lose yourself in the tranquility and stunning views of the vineyards and oak studded hills beyond. This vacation rental is located just minutes from some of the most distinguished wineries and a premier olive oil estate, and only 15 minutes from downtown Paso Robles’ restaurants, wineries and shopping. TAKE AN AERIAL TOUR
Oxford Suites Paso Robles You’ll find that from our lobby, our on-site restaurant, to our meeting spaces, to our 101 spacious suites, every space is beautiful + functional as well as comfortable + chic.
Paso Robles Vacation Rentals, also known as PasoStay.com assists guests in creating memories and wonderful experiences by providing quality privately owned vacation home rentals in Paso Robles Wine Country. With over 90 vacation homes to choose from, small enough for a couple’s romantic getaway to large homes amongst local vineyards and olive orchards, PasoStay.com has the perfect option for you. Feel free to call 805-423-9174 to talk with a local expert or book online at PasoStay.com.
The Farmhouse at Pelletiere Estate is a modern & luxurious wine country retreat. Privately situated & surrounded by our estate vineyards, located just off Hwy46w on a very accessible country road, nestled in the heart of Paso Robles’ renowned Westside, just 6 miles to Paso’s downtown square. The Farmhouse offers stunning vineyard views from every angle, as well as a stylish yet cozy house you’re bound to fall in love with!