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Wine Country Picnics: Best Spots in Paso Robles

Family having a picnic at ONX winery

Unpack the perfect Wine Country picnic in Paso Robles. With clear blue skies, rolling green hills and exquisite food and wine, there’s no better destination to unfurl that picnic blanket.

Nestled in the heart of California’s Central Coast, Paso Robles blends picturesque landscapes and world class wines. The result? Incredible picnic spots perfect for a romantic date or the whole family. With sunny days all year round, Spring, in particular, brings wildflower-strewn vistas best enjoyed under sprawling oak branches. Ready to take a romp through some seriously stunning scenery? In this guide, we’ll uncork the secrets to the best picnic spots in Paso Robles Wine Country.

Why picnic in Paso Robles?

Paso Robles is not your average picnic spot (as you’ll soon discover). Sun-dappled patios, lush vines and incredible hilltop views are the norm. With 250+ wineries and a breadth of world class wines to choose from, Paso Robles might be the best place to enjoy al fresco dining on the West Coast. Perhaps we’re biased, but Paso Robles picnics transcend a simple outdoor meal, creating a way for visitors to forge a deeper connection with sun, soil and sky. After all, this is the terroir that makes Paso wines so special. Why not appreciate it first-hand?

Do Paso Robles wineries allow outside food?

Yes! Many Paso Robles wineries allow picnics and outside food to complete your wine country experience. This guide will let you know if it’s OK to bring outside food as well as give some general information on the location, wine offerings and atmosphere. That said, if ever in doubt, simply check the winery’s website or give the tasting room a call.

Do Paso Robles wineries provide food?

Gourmet eats are plentiful in Paso Robles. Not only do many wineries encourage visitors to  bring their own picnic, but you’ll also find sit-down restaurants, casual cafes and creative culinary pairings offered at top Paso Robles Winery tasting rooms that serve food. Whether you grab a cheese and charcuterie plate from the tasting room, reserve a full winemaker dinner or pack your own picnic basket full of Paso-sourced provisions, you’re sure to come hungry and leave happy.

Can I pair my Paso picnic with wine?

This one’s a no-brainer. You can (and should) absolutely pair your Paso picnic with Paso wine! Around here, no meal is complete without an accompanying wine tasting, so be sure to reserve a tasting at the tasting room of your choice. Plus, many wineries encourage visitors to purchase wine by the glass or bottle, so everyone can enjoy a stellar paired meal. Note: Bringing outside wine is not usually permitted, so plan to visit a winery with offerings you’re excited to try. Not sure which wineries produce which varietals? Check out Paso Robles tasting room offerings beforehand by clicking through our handy Wineries, A-Z overview, here.

Top Picnic Spots in Paso Robles

lone madrone tasting room exterior

Lone Madrone

Why it’s a picnic paradise: At Lone Madrone, enjoy natural ambiance, picnic tables and comfortable Adirondack chairs designed for lounging in the sun.

In the picnic basket: Outside food is permitted, but you’ll also find a range of onsite culinary adventures to enjoy, from gourmet pairing events to delicious charcuterie plates.

Background: British-born winemaker Neil Collins is simply obsessed with finding perfect vineyard sites. As they say, “location, location, location!” In fact, the 2019 Paso Robles Wine Industry Person of the Year recipient has dedicated much of his focus to Paso’s mountainous westside vineyards. Sample award-winning Lone Madrone wines crafted from singular vineyard sites where the soils are rich in lime and clay, and, as Collins likes to say: “the rain is plentiful, the sun is hot, the nights are cool, and the ocean is close.” 

Location: Lone Madrone’s westside Paso Robles tasting room is a fitting place to appreciate Paso’s dreamy sense of place:  Find solace in the hidden corners of the estate, complete with rustic picnic tables, soothing foliage and chill areas to picnic.

Dig in: Bring your own picnic and enjoy a Lone Madrone wine tasting alongside. You can also order wine offerings by the glass or enjoy a bottle with friends. For great food available onsite, check out the winery’s new seasonal Roots Food and Wine Pairing Experience, offered on select weekends. Other delicious picnic-style offerings include a Saturday & Sunday Tasting with lunch available for purchase (courtesy of Kitchen 46) as well as Friday Tastings with charcuterie boards available for purchase (check website for availability). Whichever picnic plan you choose, Lone Madrone promises an intimate and serene wine country meal, allowing visitors to better connect with land, food and wine. 

Info | Reservations

Committed to making seriously good wine

Chronic Cellars

Why it’s a picnic paradise: With breezy lawn games, ample picnic tables and a general laid back vibe, Chronic Cellars is a casual spot for family-friendly picnicking. Well-behaved on leash pets are welcome at the Chronic patio as well, allowing every member of the fam to join in the fun.

In the picnic basket: Outside food is permitted and can be enjoyed on the outdoor patio area or lawn.

Background: The legend of Chronic Cellars dates back to 2004 when the winery’s original founders, Josh and Jake Beckett, combined their winemaking skills and turned two tons of the best (or ‘chronic’) wine grapes into some truly killer wine. Since then, Chronic Cellars has been fully committed to making seriously good wine for people looking for a dose of adventure. The winery’s colorful, disruptive style is matched only by the bold quality of their wines, always crafted with character and presented with a sense of playful mischief.

Location: Step into Chronic Cellars, a vibrant tapestry of color and exceptional wines. Located in the Willow Creek AVA, discover ideal outdoor spots for picnicking and gameplay (think: horseshoes, billiards and corn hole) all surrounded by the fresh, fun-loving energy that defines Chronic Cellars. 

Dig in: Pair your own picnic lunch with a wine tasting at Chronic Cellars to create a true “chronic” picnic. Your tasting reservation includes a whimsical tour through the winery’s current lineup of six wines focused on bold Bordeaux-Style and Red Rhône-Style blends. You can also easily savor your favorite selections by the glass or the bottle if the mood strikes.

Info | Reservations

Absolution Cellars

Why it’s a picnic paradise: Located on the Morro Bay Embarcadero, Absolution Cellars beckons with a uniquely West Coast ambiance. The tasting room is kid-friendly and dog friendly, allowing everyone to enjoy the sparkling ocean view. 

In the picnic basket: Outside food is permitted. While you dine on your own picnic lunch, enjoy a special sit-down wine tasting with the winemaker (available both outdoor and indoors).

Background: Absolution Cellars specializes in limited-production, handcrafted, single-vineyard wines from select vineyards located throughout the Central Coast. With over 20 varieties to choose from, there’s plenty of enticing offerings to explore. The owners believe that each wine should be “the best version of itself – a unique portrait of place and time, an honest expression of where and when the grapes were grown.”

Location: With a Waterside Tasting Lounge perched directly on the Morro Bay Embarcadero, keep watch for sea otters and seabirds while you taste. What better way to soak up the California sun?

Dig in: At Absolution Cellars, explore a lineup of wines from Albariño to Zinfandel and most everything in between. You’ll find that the serenity of the coastal surroundings have a way of elevating the entire experience to new levels of good vibration. While reservations are suggested, walk-ins are accepted. If you’re aiming to sit outside by the water, be sure to book in advance, as these oceanside seats tend to fill up fast!

Info | Reservations

Oso Libre

Why it’s a picnic paradise: Rugged wilderness views, estate beef burger events and a casual, dog-friendly patio come together to make Oso Libre, an authentic and well-rounded Paso Robles picnic hangout.

What’s in the picnic basket: Outside food is permitted on the dog-friendly Oso Libre patio, a wonderful place to sprawl out. The winery also offers onsite charcuterie plates as well as seasonal estate Angus burgers available on select Saturdays (check winery for more information and availability).

Background: “Oso Libre,” translating to “Free Bear” in Spanish, celebrates the untamed essence of Paso. Few things embody the spirit of area pioneers more than a cattle ranch, and in addition to crafting acclaimed and sustainable estate Bordeaux and Rhone blends, Oso Libre proudly raises Black Angus cattle that roam freely about the property. Serving up Bordeaux-style blends, fresh chardonnay and more, experience Paso Robles in all of its natural splendor.

Location: For a uniquely Paso Robles picnic experience, unwind on the patio overlooking Oso Libre’s sprawling ranch. Savor your own picnic lunch or enjoy a charcuterie plate while soaking in the wild views that define this untamed corner of the Adelaida District AVA.

Dig in: Pair a winery tasting with onsite food offerings (available on select dates). You can also purchase wine by the glass or bottle for a group picnic experience. Enticing grass-fed estate Angus beef cuts are also available to take home are also available at the Paso Robles tasting room, allowing visitors to better experience an authentic taste of Old California. 

Info | Reservations

Pasolivo Building exterior

Pasolivio Ranch

Why it’s a picnic paradise: With an enchanting olive oil tasting room surrounded by lush olive orchards, Pasolivo Ranch is a prime picnic hangout staffed by friendly folks.

In the picnic basket: Outside food is permitted at Pasolivo Ranch, but you’ll want to snack on olive oil first. Pair your picnic with a luxurious lineup of olive oil tastings, from rosemary to citrus to traditional (complementary bread is provided for dunking and sampling).

Background: Venture beyond wine and explore the golden elixir that has made Pasolivio synonymous with Paso. Blessed by a combination of temperate weather and rich, fertile soil, Pasolivo Ranch has been producing award-winning California olive oil and welcoming visitors into its orchard for over a decade. Situated on 140+ acres of rolling hills, this paradise was originally owned by legendary Hollywood director and producer King Vidor, who called this place Willow Creek Ranch. Today, the ranch serves as a great picnic stop for locals and visitors looking to drizzle some goodness. 

Location: Located on Vineyard Drive in westside Paso Robles, the Pasolivo Ranch is home to majestic towering oaks, flocks of lively wild turkeys and families of deer. The splendor of the ranch is elevated by the warm hospitality of its tasting room staff. Plus, a convenient downtown Paso Robles  Pasolivo tasting room makes picking up a few bottles for your picnic basket easier than ever.

Dig in: At Pasolivo Ranch, sample the finest olive oils all while enjoying a picnic in picturesque surroundings. Tours are available by reservation only, so be sure to talk with a staff member beforehand. You’re sure to find that Pasolivio offers a multi-sensory experience that adds that extra layer of magic to your wine country picnic. Find a new favorite to enjoy now or spice up your pantry staples.

Info | Reservations: Call 805-227-0186 or email [email protected].

VineCycle Tour at Robert Hall

Robert Hall Winery 

Why it’s a picnic paradise: At Robert Hall Winery, panoramic vineyard views and plentiful outdoor shaded picnic areas come together with exciting winery tours. There’s also a dog-friendly area for folks traveling with Fido and a handy place to charge your electric vehicle, if needed.

In the picnic basket: Outside food is permitted, but you’ll probably want to try Robert Hall Winery’s gourmet cheese plates for good measure.

Background: Known for his hard working spirit, Founder Robert Hall created an acclaimed winery from the seeds of a vision. A small-business visionary with a passion for wine, Hall ventured to Paso Robles aiming to find the perfect landscape and partner. Enter: Renowned winemaker Don Brady, who’s been the creative force behind Robert Hall Winery’s award-winning wines for years. The winery’s commitment remains crafting high-quality wines that allow visitors and locals to savor “the good life, well earned.”

Location: Located in the Geneseo AVA, Robert Hall Winery provides a quiet picnic oasis with ample room to lounge and enjoy the view. The vast property includes a relaxed outdoor area that overlooks the vineyard complete with tables, chairs and covered umbrellas.

Dig in: Enjoy Robert Hall Winery’s acclaimed Rhone red wines and classic cabernet sauvignon by the tasting, glass or bottle. Whether you pair yours with on-site cheese offerings or pack your own picnic, you’re sure to appreciate the dreamy vineyard views and attentive staff. Hungry for more? Add on a cool tour of the vineyard via e-bike or sample exclusive Cavern Select wines with a Cavern and Barrel Tasting tour.

Info | Reservations

More awesome Wineries with Picnic Areas

Brecon Estate
Built by award-winning architects and boasting shady native gardens, the Brecon Estate tasting room is the perfect place to relax with a glass of boutique wine and a tasty spread. Info

Sculpterra Winery and Sculpture Garden
Towering art sculptures, manicured lawns and live music come together with a rainbow of unique, handcrafted wines and iconic blends at this El Pomar District tasting room. Info

Eberle Winery
A time-honored Paso Robles winery, Eberle Winery continues to create famous cabernet sauvignon and a warm and hospitable atmosphere for guests. All are invited to picnic on Eberle’s outdoor tasting deck (a great place to gather with old and new friends). Info

Castoro Cellars
Sit­u­at­ed in the mid­dle of Castoro Cellars’ organ­i­cal­ly grown Cob­ble Creek Estate Vine­yard, enjoy a glass of cabernet sauvignon and a picnic alongside views of the Templeton Gap’s sur­round­ing hills and vine­yards. Info

Peachy Canyon Winery
With a historic “Old Schoolhouse” tasting room, a dedicated picnic area, cute gazebo and rolling hillside views, Peachy Canyon Winery is a prime locale to enjoy Paso’s iconic heritage zinfandel grape and a bite. Info

Best Picnic Provisions in downtown Paso Robles

Elevate your picnic game with the perfect Paso-approved basket. Shop local to enhance the flavors of Paso Robles and add an extra dose of ‘yum’ to your pairing.

Red Scooter Deli 
Red Scooter Deli offers filling and unfussy sandwiches and more, perfect for takeout or on-site dining. Locals and visitors alike adore these bold sandos and sides (and for added convenience, the deli offers a delivery service to your picnic site). Info

The General Store
A popular downtown Paso Robles market, the General Store has everything you forgot, from a cheese knife to pretty cloth napkins. Supplying condiments, salamis, cheeses and gadgets, your perfect picnic starts here.  Info

Thomas Hill Organics Bistro & Wine Bar
A fully organic farm-to-table restaurant, “THO” offers delicious meals made by local purveyors. Find plenty of fresh options geared towards picnickers, including vegan and vegetarian options. Info

Di Raimondo’s Italian Market
A small-yet-worldly shop, Di Raimondo’s Italian Market boasts a wide range of local and imported cheeses. From Italian cured meats to double Brie, find your next salty snack here (the market also offers picnic baskets with charcuterie and sandwiches to-go). Info

Brown Butter Cookie Company
Blending shortbread and unique flavors, Brown Butter Cookie Company provides the perfect sweet finale to your picnic. It never hurts to come prepared with dessert! Info

Don’t forget these picnic essentials

Picnic Blanket:
Many wineries provide picnic tables and chairs. However, if you prefer to sit in the grass, do bring a comfortable blanket to sit on

No need to dress up for your wine country picnic, but do bring a sun hat, shades and a light jacket just in case.

While many wineries have utensils, it’s best to come prepared with your own, as well as any special napkins, plates or other accessories you feel will make your picnic special.

Wine journal:
Pack a wine journal or use a smartphone app to document your tasting notes and favorite wines.

Your manners:
Wine Country etiquette kindly asks that you respect the winery’s rules and guidelines, clean up after your picnic and dispose of trash responsibly and be mindful of noise levels to maintain a peaceful atmosphere for everyone. Also: Please observe rules regarding children and pets. When in doubt, contact the winery directly for the very best up-to-date information.

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