More Paso Robles Wineries
Not to be Missed
It was quite a thrill to see what the co-owner of LXV Wine said about our first post about Paso Robles. “Omg, super thorough and explains the Paso Robles wine region extremely accurately!” said Kunal Mittal. I have to say, it is always nice to be affirmed by a community member. If you missed the post, be sure to click on the link above.
This post will continue to share information about the remaining wineries that hosted us during WWET Paso Robles. And I should start with LXV Wines because that is the first place we visited.
Although not part of the “official” Itinerary, Fred, our fearless leader, arranged a tasting experience for anyone who wished to attend the evening before the conference started. Ultimately, about half of the attendees of the conference enjoyed a tasting experience at LXV winery unlike any I have ever had at any winery, anywhere. LXV is the brainchild of Neeta and Kunal Mittal. Coming from India, Neeta and Kunal wanted to make wines from Bordeaux and Italian grape varieties they love and offer a tasting experience that defies what we all learned about spice, heat, flavor, and wine. I will talk about the visit later because it was a highlight of the entire trip.
LXV offers six current vintage wines on their website that range in price from $52.00 to $90.00 a bottle. In addition, they offer twelve reserve wines that range from $90.00 to $120.00. Finally, they list eleven library wines that sell for $42.00 to $150.00. They do ship to SC.
Doing a tasting at LXV is a “must-do” whenever you are in Paso Robles. Tastings start at $20.00 per person, but you will want to add the spice pairings, so plan on $30.00 per person.
LXV winery is DTC (direct to consumer) only.
In 2003, owner/winemaker Bob Tillman first walked the 130-acre property that would become Alta Colina Vineyards. They are well known in the area for their beautiful vineyards. Alta Colina is a family winery led by Bob, his wife Lynn, and daughter Maggie. They currently offer eight wines on their website that range in price from $35 to $64. Unfortunately, they do not ship to SC and do not have distribution, so you must visit and “suitcase” these babies home.
Your Outdoor Tasting Flight is $25pp; a Behind the Cellar Door for $45pp; or the Summit Vineyard Tasting for $70pp.
Robert Hall Winery is the flagship winery for O’Neill Vinter’s & Distillers, the seventh-largest winery in California that makes and sells wine under forty-one brands. They joined O’Neill in 2016 after 17 years of ownership by Robert & Margaret Hall. Robert Hall Winery sources all of its grapes from Hall Ranch, their 173-acre estate growing 12 grape varietals. Regenerative farming is a vital component of the Robert Hall Winery vision.
They offer three different tastings in their tasting room. The Cavern Select Wine Experience offers the Seasonal “Select” Tasting for $25.00 per person or the Seasonal “Reserve” Tasting for $50.00 per person. They also offer the Paired Culinary Experience for $60.00 during lunch, including the “Select” wines mentioned above.
Robert Hall currently offers 11 wines on their website that sell in the range of $18.00 to $60.00. Robert Hall ships to most states but, unfortunately, not SC. Some of their wines are distributed nationally.
Cabernet drinkers “in the know” are aware of Austin Hope Cabernet Sauvignon. The rest of the world caught on when their 2017 vintage was awarded 95 points and became the 2017 number 10 wine in the world by Wine Enthusiast. Costco shoppers also because they always have a shelf of Austin Hope Cab. But on this visit, we learned that they are much more than just one wine.
The Hope family started farming in the Paso area thirty years ago. What began as apple orchards and grapes became just grapes for their award-winning Bordeaux- and Rhône-styled wines. They also source grapes from other vineyards in other sub-districts in Paso because they have five different brands, all of which need a lot of fruit. In addition to Austin Hope, the other brands are Treana, Quest, Liberty School, and Troublemaker. In total, there are nineteen wines available on their website. Most are red wines, along with two whites and a rosé. The Austin Hope brand wines range from $33 (rosé), $47 (whites), and $55 to $85 for the reds. The remaining brands’ wines range from $16 to $45. They do ship to SC. And they are in distribution here in SC.
They offer various tasting options, most of which are $25.00 per person. The Aromatic Wine Tasting * Elevated Experience is $60.00 per person. Tasting fees are waived with qualifying purchases.
For decades dating back to the 1920s, Dusi Vineyards were strictly grape growers supplying wineries with the fruit from which they made their wines. That was until 2006 when fourth-generation farmer Janelle Dusi started J Dusi Wines. Today, she creates wine from the two family-owned and operated vineyards, Dusi Vineyards and Paper Street Vineyards, and the wines are labeled accordingly.
There are roughly twenty wines available on their website (1 white and 1 rosé, and the rest red wines). The red wines sell for $44 to $78 a bottle. The wines are only available on the website or by visiting the tasting room. They do ship to SC.
When visiting the winery, the tasting fee is $30. They pour both J Dusi and Paper Street Labels, and the tasting fee is waived with a $40.00 purchase per person.
Riley Hubbard is one of the many young guns of Paso making new and exciting wines that are changing the face of the region. Her winery is in Tin City, an industrial warehouse complex on the outskirts of town housing winemakers, brewers, distillers, markets, olive oil presses, restaurants, and so much more. Honestly, I think one could spend an entire weekend in Tin City and never experience it all. This is where the “cool kids” go, and Hubba Wines is there to delight you with her wines. Riley currently has three wines listed on her website. Three red blends and a Chenin Blanc range in price from $42 to $55.00 a bottle. Hubba ships to SC.
Being there is best. Tastings are offered by reservation only for $30.00 per person Thursday through Monday from 11 am to 4 pm. Or you can order a glass to enjoy while eating a Ledbetter Pizza from their Pizza Pop-Up station just outside Hubba’s door! YUM!
Justin Winery planted its first vineyard in 1981 when investment banker Justin Baldwin turned his love of wine into a passion project. With a focus on fine, world-class Bordeaux-style wines, he started with a 160-acre plot. His first vintage was released in 1984. The winery now produces more than 100,000 cases of wine annually, sourced mainly from its 1,300-plus acres of vineyards. Wanting to focus on their high-end wines, Bladwin decided that he needed a partner. That was in 2010 when he sold Justin Winery to Fiji Water, whose billionaire owner, Stewart Resnick, who also owns POM pomegranate juice and is the largest grower of pistachios and walnuts in California. Their wine club is one of the oldest in California, with an estimated 20,000 members.
Their Signature Wine series has five red wines available for purchase and another three that are club only. These wines range from $40 to $91 a bottle. Justin Winery also distributes several of its wines in South Carolina.
Their tasting room is open daily 11:00 am – 5:00 pm. Justin Winery offers two tastings. The Estate Tasting Flight is $45.00 per person, and the Premium Tasting Flight is $80.00 per person.
Our visit to DAOU Family Estates was our last stop at the conference. It was a glorious last stop with the end of the conference final dinner but more on that in a later post. Daou Family Estates is the passion project of Georges and Daniel Daou. Brothers born in Lebanon whose family fleed to France in 1975 when the Lebanese civil war escalated, which made staying in Lebanon an impossible dream. However, while living in southern France, their father developed a passion for wine which the brothers followed. In the 1980s, Georges and Daniel moved to San Diego to study and pursue their American dream. After creating a successful business that ultimately went public, the brothers sold their shares and moved to Paso Robles to achieve their ultimate dream of becoming winemakers.
DAOU Family Estates has approximately ten different wines sold throughout the country at wine stores and restaurants. On their website, you will find wines divided into four separate categories. Discovery grouping includes three wines selling for $20.00 to $24.00. The journey grouping consists of four wines selling for $30.00 to $52.00. The Reserve grouping includes seven wines selling for $40.00 to $90.00. and the Estate group consists of nine wines selling for $85.00 to $170.00.
The tasting room is a sight to be seen with 360-degree views.
It is opulent yet very welcoming. I highly recommend a trip up the mountain.
DAOU Vineyard Excursion is their most immersive storytelling and history of the DAOU family legacy. It begins by four-wheeling into the vineyards. The maximum is four people at the cost of $150.00 per person.
DAOU Tasting Experience includes a diverse flight of 5 wines representing DAOU Mountain at $45.00 per person.
Cabernet Clone Experience includes a walk in the experimental vineyard atop Daou Mountain. Following the tour is a tasting of the three clones used to create the flagship, Soul of the Lion wine. You will taste each clone separately and then taste how Daniel blends the clones to produce depth, complexity, and balance. This experience is $150.00 per person.
I hope you enjoyed this overview of the wineries that opened their doors, wines, and hearts to Gary and me. If you find yourself in Paso, be sure to give these places a visit.