By now, you know it’s true: we just do things a little bit different here in Paso Robles. Here’s 5 ways to get the true Paso Robles outdoor dining experience. From our rebellious wines to our laid-back vibe, this is wine country as you’ve never experienced.
Here, lunch can roll straight into dinner the good vintages are always worth uncorking. When it comes to eating well, you know we go hog wild (with a pinkie up, of course). Belly up and bon appetite! The sky’s the limit.
1. Overstay your welcome at Cass Winery
Sure, an ocean view is nice. However, here in Paso Robles Wine Country, we can think of one nicer: The vineyard view. There’s nothing quite like relaxing on Cass Winery’s outdoor veranda, surrounded by green vines, blue skies and friendly faces. Stop by the Cass Cafe for lunch—but be warned—you might end up hanging a lot longer than you expected. No worries, the Cass team is known for ample hospitality! With creamy smoked salmon spread with fresh herbs and capers, a delicious muffuletta sandwich topped with roasted eggplant, chunky olive tapenade and house-made seasonal desserts too good to pass up, you’re in for a treat to top them all. Plus, your server will visit your table and continually replenish the wine in your glass! Good luck getting up.
Grub down: Cass Winery’s cafe is open daily from 11am-5pm. Reservations are required for groups of six or more.
Make a reservation, click here or call (805) 239-1730.
2. Feel the fire at Fish Gaucho
The heat is on! Spice up those simply delicious Paso Robles summer nights with a menu that marvels. Fish Gaucho is “modern Mexican” at its finest: from-scratch salsas, creamy guac and fabulous appetizers (try the ceviche and chips for a cooling kick). Seeking pure summer in a bowl? Ripe seasonal love shines in the chef’s flavorful Pozole de Verano, made with hominy, braised pork shoulder, radish, lime, avocado and cilantro crema. The restaurant’s outdoor patio is perfect for unwinding: Watch passersby and witness the last rays of sunshine as they melt into a warm summer evening. Pressed for time? Go for the lobster enchiladas and a cocktail to go. Can’t go wrong there!
Grub down: Reservations are available daily for parties of up to ten guests. Hours are 3 to 9 p.m. daily with lunch served from 11:30-3 p.m. Friday through Sunday.
(Photo credit for Fish Gaucho photo and the main photo at top of blog: Sarah Kathleen)
3. Take the Tasting “To Go” at JUSTIN
Modern, elegant, yet totally accessible to the most novice wine drinker, JUSTIN’s downtown Paso Robles tasting room is known for offering up sophisticated nibbles with a side of wine education. However, did you know that you can now take that swanky experience home with curbside pick up? It’s true! Sip award-winning Bordeaux-style wines from your own couch and wash it all down with contemporary American-style pairings (this is one meat and cheese plate you won’t soon forget). Let’s face it, this is the fanciest you’ve ever felt while sitting at your own dining room table. Clink, clink!
JUSTIN also has a gorgeous setting overlooking the vineyards where you’ll enjoy their fine cuisine and wines outdoors while staying safely distanced. They have been nominated for the 2020 USA Today 10 Best Readers’ Choice Awards in the Best Winery Restaurant category! Make your reservation early, as they book up quickly. For a virtual tour text Justin to 24587.
Grub down: JUSTIN’s downtown Paso Robles tasting room is open for curbside pickup 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. To make reservations to JUSTIN Restaurant click here.
Make an order: Call 805-591-3225 to place your order for curbside pickup or make your reservation to dine amongst the vines.
Mapping and directions to JUSTIN Downtown, click here
4. Hang-Time at Pappy McGregor’s
Cheers to camaraderie and a great glass of wine (or craft beer) from this award-winning gastropub featuring high quality comfort food and seasonal craft cocktails in the heart of Paso Robles. For years, Pappy McGgregor’s has served as a beloved meeting place for winemakers, brewers, travelers and locals alike. Chill out on the hangout’s two great vibe, outdoor patios and taste why Pappy’s has enjoyed such incredible staying power in downtown Paso Robles. OK, we have some idea: just try their prime rib sandwich, dressed with creamy blue cheese horseradish spread and onion jam. Yum! With local wine, cider, beer and craft cocktails galore (from 1122 —including the ¡Señorita Rosalita!, composed of fresh strawberry, basil and silver tequila—you’ll never guess what the next round will bring, especially since they have teamed up with critically acclaimed hidden speakeasy, 1122 Cocktail Lounge!
Grub down: The restaurant is open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Fri-Sat 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. for patio dining and takeout.
More info: No need for reservations unless you are a party of 6 or more. For more information, call 805-238-7070.
(Photo credit: Sarah Kathleen)
5. Go “Family Style” at Thomas Hill Organics
It doesn’t matter if your “family” is just you and your spouse, the kiddos, your dog, or a best friend. Treat your pod to a meal that truly brings the whole gang together. Thomas Hill Organics in downtown Paso Robles knows how to weave fresh, seasonal flavors into every dish (and summer produce is at peak ripeness that’s for sure). Now is the very best time to savor the juicy heirloom tomatoes and lovely produce of the season, so go forth and order from Thomas Hill Organic’s famous family meal offerings! Available every Wednesday for pick up, you’ll get a full fledged feast for an incredible price. Want an example of just how awesome “family style” can truly be? THO’s recent weekly offering included a traditional Cuban salad with watercress, avocado and pineapple in a lime and toasted coriander dressing; a Cuban spiced sandwich with braised and shredded beef with roasted red peppers, capers and olives; a side of yellow rice and key lime pie for dessert. Wine is also available for pickup with all orders (this meal calls for a chilled bottle of Brecon Estate 2019 Albarino, Central Coast). That said, there’s plenty of local wines to choose from. Go nuts. You do you!
Thomas Hill Organics is also open for lunch and dinner dining on the outdoor patio with a lovely selection of cuisine to satisfy your foodie cravings. Open everyday except Wednesday!
Make a reservation for the outdoor patio dining, click here!
Grub down: Thomas Hill Organics’ Family Meals are available for pick up only every Wednesday from 4:30 to 8 p.m.
More information: Order Thomas Hill Organics’ Wednesday family meals here: www.thomashillorganics.com/wednesdaynight-family-meal. Email [email protected] for special requests, and additional desserts:
This blog is written by flavor fiend Hayley Cain. Follow her @flavorslo on Instagram or at astoldbyhayley.com.