The Paso Robles AVA in the San Luis Obispo County, which falls between Los Angeles and San Francisco, has a long history of producing quality wines made from Zinfandel. The region’s prolonged growing season that’s full of warm days and cooler nights leads to big wines with vibrant and concentrated fruit. But beyond the spicy and jammy Zinfandels, there are over 40 different varietals grown throughout the region’s 26,000 acres under vine––including the fashionable Rhône varieties Syrah and Grenache. These wines are also considerably robust in style, with intense fruit as the primary focus. The area has also become quite the tourist attraction with its myriad tasting rooms, boutique shops and local restaurants filling the downtown streets. For more information on the wines of the region be sure to check out our Paso Robles Wine Guide.
This is awesome Syrah. It starts with wonderfully rich and inviting aromas of Provencal herbs, such as thyme, bay leaf and rosemary, and a note of lavender. The fruit is all cherries and blackberries, sweet and pure, seasoned with smoky oak. Fresh in acids, backed with firm but soft and complex tannins, this is a dramatic and beautiful wine. What a long, rich finish.
A fabulous white Rhone blend of enormous complexity and charm. Fills the mouth with butterscotch, creme brulee, pineapple, stony mineral, vanilla, impossibly ripe white peach and creamy hazelnut flavors, and as sweet as that sounds, the wine is dry and crisp. The greatest Esprit Blanc ever. Roussanne, Grenache Blanc and Viognier.
This dessert wine has pushed itself to the front of the line of California sweeties, and the ’04 is a great bottling. It’s enormously sweet in late-harvest character, with apricot liqueur, pineapple tart and vanilla cream flavors that are brightened and boosted with cleansing acidity. So addictively delicious you just can’t help yourself.
Solidly in the Saxum style, which is to say a high alcohol (15.5%), massively flavored wine of enormous concentration and power. The blackberry, cherry, cassis and chocolate flavors have all kind of overtones, ranging from licorice and vanilla to gingerbread and candied violets. Saxum has become a cult favorite, one of the highest-priced brands from Paso Robles…
Although this Cab is quite tannic, it’s really good now. Shows impeccable balance in a New World style that oozes black and red currants, dark chocolate, licorice, cedar and plums, with a note of raw, bloody meat. Very high quality, an excellent rendition of western Paso Robles hillside Cabernet. Good through 2015, with proper cellaring.
With 21% residual sugar, this is an enormously sweet wine, one of the most honeyed of the vintage. A little sugar goes a long way, of course, but this wine also charms with rich, powerful apricot, peach and vanilla custard flavors, perfectly balanced with crisp acidity. With consistently high scores over the years, Tears of Dew has taken a place in the front ranks…
An enormously complex wine, a real step forward in a California dry white wine. These Rhône grapes blend tropical fruit and peach flavors with tangy minerals and dried herbs. Despite the big flavors, the wine has lively acidity, and is a guaranteed cellar candidate for a decade. A blend of Roussanne, Viognier, Grenache and Marsanne.
The first-ever wine from this West Side property, and a very great wine it is. A beautifully balanced Rhône blend with aromas of raspberry, cherry, sweet wood smoke and vanilla, it is extracted and jammy, but complex. Layers of oak, chocolate, cherry, cream and spices cascade across the palate. The finish is long and spicy-sweet.