What a weekend last weekend was! It was my first time to Paso Robles wine country and I’d have to say it is one of my most favorite wine countries. That’s a bold statement coming from me since I have been to my fair share of wineries (Sonoma, Napa, France, New Zealand, Santa Barbara, San Louis Obispo). What I loved about Paso is the unpretentious, friendly people there and the sheer number of fantastic wineries the region has (the region has about 300 wineries). We only went to three, but they were top notch. I’ll review a little about why I loved them so much in my list of must-see’s below. I’ve rounded up where we stayed, which wineries we went to and more!
Where to Stay: Springhill Suites Atascadero
While I usually opt for the unique, boutique hotels, the Springhill Suites Atascadero is an affordable option that is just outside the Paso Robles wine region. With rooms anywhere from $150-$200 a night, it is a great option if you are staying multiple nights. We stayed two nights at this hotel! Free breakfast, free WiFi, an awesome backyard with a fire pit, and a very friendly staff made this stay enjoyable. It’s also ideal for working business millennials who need a place with strong WiFi (ahem, bloggers).
Wineries to Visit: We received many suggestions from people who have visited the wine country before, so I’ve compiled a list of must-see’s in the area!
Niner Wine Estates: Niner was the first winery we visited an still remains on of the favorites. The staff at Niner is unbeatable, they are knowledgeable, hilarious, and helpful. One of the staff members even went above and beyond and helped out with a photoshoot we did after the tasting. As far as the wine goes, the 2014 Reserve Syrah was at the top of our list. This wine was grown on the “Heart Hill vineyard”, named after the trees on the hill of their property that from a heart. Picture perfect!
Halter Ranch Vineyard: This winery is the second winery we visited, located in Paso Robles’ Westside Adelaida District. The wine here was some of the best I’ve had. Standouts included their 2017 Rosé, which features aromas of wild strawberry, watermelon and guava. Just delicious. I also enjoyed the 2015 CDP (Côtes de Paso), which is a Rhône-style blend that is a combination of four varietals from their estate vineyard: Grenache, Syrah, Tannat, and Mourvèdre. It’s fruit forward, smooth and has a lovely long finish. The winery also has a very ambient atmosphere- there is something going on on all sides of you as you taste. There are people outside enjoying the fireplace and picnic tables, as well as people learning about wine beside you. It’s a very comfortable atmosphere!
Tablas Creek Vineyard: Tablas is a great stopping point on your winery tour. They are famous for their Alpacas that provide fertilization for the wine, as they mostly farm in a dry climate (rock beds). They are also all organic and sustainable, which is definitely a plus in my book. When you first come to the winery, you get a little canteen to drink some fresh, mineralized water in! How thoughtful!
DAOU: Unfortunately, we didn’t get the chance to visit DAOU, but we will for sure next time. This winery is known for it’s sweeping views of the region and for it’s fantastic wine. You do have to get a reservation to taste there, which is why it didn’t work out for us when we tried to visit. Definitely a good tip to know beforehand.
Tobin James Cellars: We didn’t a chance to visit this winery either, but we did try their champagne from our hotel. The champagne was delicious, not too sweet, easily drinkable, and a little dry. All my favorite things. We’ll definitely go to this vineyard when we go back.
Pasolivo Ranch: This was next on our list of tastings. It was my favorite second to Niner Estates. We went for the Olive Oil Tasting, but they have so much more than that! We tasted 8 different olive oils, each with a different spice or salt to bring out different flavors. Some of the highlights were the Basil Olive Oil with the Herbs de Provence, and the Rosemary Olive Oil with their Fig Balsamic Vinegar. OMG. Also, the place is too cute! They sell everything from candles to plates to body soaps… We took home a few goodies 🙂 A must see.
Silva Brewing: If you are a fan of unique craft beers, this is your place! Silva creates some amazing brews, including their Walnut Nitro Milk Stout, which uses local walnuts from the farms there. A nice spot to take a break from wine and get a brew.
Mt. Olive Organic Farm: I enjoy everything organic farms have to offer, and this one has quite the bounty of fresh goodies. Stop here for a peek at the llamas, some fresh walnuts and meat, or a quick lunch.
Here is a Youtube video of our trip!
If you have any other recommendations for Paso, I’d love to hear them! This was such a fun trip, I can’t wait to head back. There’s still so much to see.