I’m beginning to have a new appreciation for the Paso Robles AVA and that may be because I’ve found a new wine love: Rhone-style wines. I went to this year’s Rhone Ranger seminar and tasting, as well as the Paso Robles seminar and tasting, and what I’ve learned is that the Paso Robles AVA most mimics the terroir and climate of the French AVAs known to produce Bordeaux and Rhone.
Well, it was at the Rhone Rangers seminar where I first met Jason DiFrancesco of Leverage Wines who introduced me to a great line-up of his productions — everything from a “Big Boy” Rose to a soft and supple Grenache. So when he kindly gifted me some of his newest releases for sampling and reviewing, I knew I was in for a treat.
I was at the Paso Robles Wine Country Grand Tasting Event in Oakland last week when I overheard one of the winemakers saying that the most frequent question he gets asked by consumers is, “Where in Napa is Paso Robles?”
Ok, let’s download for a second and just talk about where Paso Robles is and what that means in regards to wine…
Love learning about food and wine pairings? Then you may want to become the newest member of the Tasters Guild International — a US nationwide society of foodies/wine-lovers who gather together with their local chapters to geek out on all things culinary.
While wine tasting at this year’s SF Pinot Days, I was lucky enough to meet John Engstrom and Jim Lipman of California’s only living Tasters Guild chapter, the Diablo Tasters Guild located in the San Francisco East Bay Area. They were kind enough to invite me to one of their monthly get-togethers where they sync a local restaurant’s venue and cuisine with a California winery. This month the Guild featured food with an Italian flare from Buon Appetito in Fremont alongside some Spanish-inspired wine from Bodegas Paso Robles.
Rhone Rangers, a non-profit organization, is dedicated to promoting American Rhone-style wines, supporting the winemakers who choose to put a New World spin on Old World wine, and — of course — educating the public about the unique and versatile wines produced from all of this research and labour. During the 2016 Rhone Rangers Seminar and Grande Tasting in San Francisco, I had the privilege to learn directly from local, West Coast winemakers who work to move beyond common “Syrah-stereotypes.”