Ah, the ever-expanding Paso Robles Wine Country is a paradise for wine lovers, with more than 200 wineries. But today, let’s go off the beaten path. We’re spotlighting those hidden gems that embody the very essence of fine winemaking. These wineries may not be the most talked about, but they’ve got heart, skill, and remarkable wines that you simply can’t overlook.
Copia Vineyards, founded by Varinder Sahi and Anita Kothari, is another hidden jewel. They’ve carved a niche for themselves with exceptional Rhône-style wines. Grapes for their boutique bottles come from their very own Copia Estate Vineyard, established in 2019, as well as from some of the area’s top grape-growing properties. This focus on sourcing high-quality fruit from prestigious vineyards allows Copia to craft wines of exceptional character and complexity.
Copia Vineyards offers three flagship wines, each with its own distinctive characteristics. “The Story” is a Grenache-driven blend that captivates with the freshness of raspberries, while “The Source” is a Syrah-driven blend that soars with notes of dark chocolate and blackcurrants . These wines exemplify the artistry and craftsmanship that go into each bottle produced by Copia.
The dedication to quality extends beyond the vineyard and into Copia’s winemaking practices. The winery strives to bring out the best expression of the grapes by incorporating traditional winemaking techniques with modern innovations. As a result, Copia wines have received high scores and praise, with their 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon and 2019 “The Pursuit” earning impressive ratings.
Copia Vineyards’ passion for winemaking and commitment to excellence is evident in every bottle they produce. With plans to expand and replant 20 acres, the winery continues to evolve and refine its offerings to delight wine enthusiasts.
A visit to Copia Vineyards promises a memorable experience, where you can discover the unique flavors and experience the distinctive charm of Paso Robles wine country.
Thurs – Mon: 10 AM – 4 PM
Tues – Wed: 11AM – 4PM
Step into Cordant Winery, a must-visit sanctuary for aficionados of Pinot Noir and Rhône-style blends. Founded in 2014 by David and DeAnn Taylor, this isn’t your run-of-the-mill winery. Cordant’s difference? They mostly source grapes from an expansive catchment area stretching an impressive 180 miles, from the verdant hills of Monterey County down to the sun-kissed soils of Santa Barbara.
But what truly elevates Cordant is their laser focus on vineyards. They’re not just purchasing any fruit; they’re hand-selecting from the respected vineyards within this extensive region. They collaborate with a variety of sites that experience both warm and cool climates, making their offerings exceptionally diverse. Take note of their Rhône blends: these grapes are sourced from outside Paso, imbuing the wines with a distinct style and unique flavor profiles that are not to be missed.
Cordant Winery is one of the rare venues in Paso Robles where you can indulge in Pinot Noir. For a truly enlightening experience, don’t miss a side-by-side Pinot Noir tasting. You’ll sample selections from Solomon Hills in Santa Maria Valley, Escolle Vineyard in Monterey County, and Radian Vineyard in Santa Rita Hills, one of the coldest vineyards in the area. This eye-opening tasting reveals how soil and climate nuances directly impact the wine’s character— a captivating lesson for any wine enthusiast.
With the recent additions of seasoned winemaker Scott Stelzle and general manager Nikki Smith, Cordant has also elevated their hospitality game, particularly at their cozy Ramada Row tasting room.
If you haven’t stepped into Cordant Winery lately, prepare for a delightful revelation. They have not only garnered a reputation for top-notch wines but continue to evolve. A visit here is not just a treat; it’s an education.
Thursday through Monday 10:30-5:00pm
Bovino Vineyards is a hidden gem nestled in the picturesque Templeton Gap, in the El Pomar District of Paso Robles. Dan Souza is the winery owner and an entrepreneur of many businesses who has found new passion in the fine art of viticulture and winemaking.
Bovino Vineyards and its signature brands, Joludi & gen·er·os·i·ty, are a clear reflection of who he is – Joludi is a tribute to his hardworking parents, Joe and Ludrie. Whereas a gen·er·os·i·ty wines generate funds to be invested back into the community, especially in human services aid.
Despite their remarkable wines, Bovino Vineyards remains relatively unknown to many locals. The winery focuses on producing Bordeaux-style wines, with their portfolio stretching from Italian and Spanish varieties to Bordeaux and Rhône-style offerings. Their passion and expertise are evident in each bottle produced from their 45-acre vineyard.
Steve Anglim is the winemaker and General Manager for Bovino Vineyards, consistently producing high-quality, award-winning wines. Steve spent 24 years in the automotive industry before launching his own operation in 2002.
His belief is that great wine begins with great fruit and if you have great fruit, the rest will take care of itself. Therefore, Bovino pays utmost attention to every detail in the vineyard and this approach pays dividends when it comes to harvest time in the winery.
Steve’s philosophy is simple: “Every grape has its own innate potential. The job of a winemaker is to help realize that potential –and not make mistakes.” With 16 varieties on the property, Bovino is a dream. “The range — from Italian to Bordeaux to Rhône — presents a rare opportunity to experiment, showcasing unique varietals, such as Arneis, alongside the more traditional, while maintaining the distinctive terroir of El Pomar and Bovino.”
The boutique winery offers wine enthusiasts a chance to discover and savor the unique flavors that define the wines of Paso Robles Wine Country. The views from the tasting room should also not be missed.
Friday and Saturday 11am-5pm
Sunday and Monday 11am-4pm
The Royal NoneSuch Farm
Nestled 1800 feet above the Pacific Ocean, between the charming towns of Cambria and Templeton, lies The Royal NoneSuch Farm. Owned by Anthony Yount and his family, this hidden gem is situated in the picturesque York Mountain AVA .
Acquired in 2011, the 25-acre hillside ranch became the Yount family’s labor of love. They carefully planted 7.5 acres with Grenache, Syrah, Graciano, and Clairette Blanche, choosing to focus on crafting two exceptional wines each vintage, a red and a white. The vineyards ascend from 1,400 feet to a peak of 1,800 feet, making it a truly unique and special site .
Grenache holds a special place in Anthony’s heart and dominates the vineyard’s plantings. The wines crafted from these vines showcase the expressive and distinctive character of this variety. One notable offering is their 2016 Tempranillo, which reflects the vibrant raspberry fruit flavors that Paso Robles wines are known for.
At The Royal NoneSuch Farm, the Yount family takes an educational approach to their wine tastings. Visitors have the opportunity to learn about the wines they produce and gain a deeper appreciation for the winemaking process.
In addition to their vineyards, The Royal NoneSuch Farm is also a working farm where three-generations of the Yount Family raise livestock, grow fruits and vegetables, and live.
The attention to detail and commitment to quality is evident in the wines produced at The Royal NoneSuch Farm. With its idyllic location it’s no wonder that this family-owned vineyard is considered a hidden gem in Paso Robles Wine Country. Sign up for their mailing list to be notified when wines are available to purchase.
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Located on La Panza Road in Creston, Chateau Margene is a hidden gem in Paso Robles Wine Country that is well worth a visit . Specializing in luxury, estate wines, Chateau Margene produces exceptional Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay .
The winery, owned by the Mooney family, prides itself on crafting Bordeaux-style blends and Cabernet Sauvignons that showcase the unique terroir of Creston. Their dedication to quality is evident in each bottle, with meticulous attention to detail given throughout the winemaking process .
Chateau Margene offers guests two locations to experience their wines. The estate winery in Creston provides a serene and picturesque setting to savor their luxurious offerings . Additionally, their tasting room on the Embarcadero in Morro Bay provides a coastal ambiance and a chance to sample their wines in a different setting .
Chateau Margene’s commitment to excellence has garnered recognition and accolades, solidifying its status as one of the top wineries in Creston and Paso Robles Wine Country. Wine enthusiasts can expect to find beautifully structured wines with layers of complexity and rich flavors.
Whether you’re seeking a bold Cabernet Sauvignon or a delicate Pinot Noir, Chateau Margene offers a range of wines that will satisfy even the most discerning palates . With its stunning location, exceptional wines, and personalized tastings, a visit to Chateau Margene is a must for wine lovers exploring the Creston area.
Friday through Sunday 11-4:30pm
Nestled in the Creston region of Paso Robles Wine Country, Aleksander Wine is a hidden gem that has been quietly producing exceptional Bordeaux-style wines since 2010. However, despite their outstanding quality, this winery remains relatively unknown to many locals.
Owned by Goran and Ksenija Bjekovic, along with their eldest son Sasha, Aleksander Wine is truly a family endeavor. With a 30-acre estate in Creston, they produce only two Bordeaux-style wines: the white label and the black Reserve. These wines, dominated by Merlot, are artfully blended with Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Petit Verdot, and Cabernet Franc in varying proportions, depending on the vintage.
Aleksander Wine’s commitment to excellence is evident in their meticulous winemaking practices and the resulting wines. While their production is limited, with annual case production under 2,000, Aleksander Wine offers wine enthusiasts the opportunity to experience Bordeaux-style wines with a distinct Central Coast influence.
Visitors to Aleksander Wine can look forward to a personalized tasting experience, where they can learn about the winemaking process and the story behind each vintage. It is a chance to explore and appreciate the artistry and passion that goes into each bottle produced by Aleksander Wine. Tastings are by appointment only, so to make a reservation jump onto their website
Though hidden from the public eye, Aleksander Wine’s dedication to producing exceptional Bordeaux-style wines has earned them a loyal following of wine enthusiasts. Their limited production and focus on quality make a visit to Aleksander Wine a truly unique and delightful experience in Paso Robles Wine Country.
Wednesday through Sunday 11-5:00pm
So, there you have it! Six under-the-radar wineries in Paso Robles that deserve your attention and, most importantly, a visit. Trust us, your taste buds will thank you. Cheers to discovering the hidden treasures of Paso Robles Wine Country!
Photo by Armando Castillejos