After a night in Buelton, the next morning I got back on highway 101 and headed North about an hour and a half to my next wine region destination, Paso Robles. The region is more or less divided by the highway to the East and West. I concentrated on the very hilly west side.
Kukkula: My first stop far up in the mountains, the owner poured and told the story of the Finnish heritage of the label.
2008 “Sisu” A GSM blend, Dark brick with black cherry tar on the nose, chewy dark fruit with bright cola notes and balance on the long finish.
2010 “Lothario” Dark brick with warm black fruit on the nose, juicy, black cherry and leather on the fruit.
2011 “Pas de Deux” Syrah and Grenache, dark brick with a purple robe, earth and dried mushroom on the nose, bitter dark fruit on the firm but balanced finish.
Thacher Winery: The grasshopper logo is from the family crest, very small production.
2012 Mourvedre Medium red with earth and dried mushroom on the nose, chewy cherry vanilla flavors on the fruit.
2012 “Controlled Chaos” Red blend, dark purple. closed nose of red leather with dried herb notes on the balanced finish.
2012 “Constant Variable” A GSM blend, dark purple with dried herbs and bright red cherry on the nose, bitter cherry on the finish.
Oso Libre Winery: “Free Bear” , sustainable vineyards and winery with various sheep and Black Angus cattle grazing on the grounds.
2012 “Carnal” Red blend, medium red with ripe black fruit on the nose, silky black cherry fruit and nice acids.
2010 “Grande” Bordeaux blend, dark red, dried herbs on the nose, tight and concentrated with silky tannin at the end.
2007 “Jovis” red blend with some Nebbiolo and Sangiovese thrown in, brick with a big, funky perfume that I can’t place, cigar box and funky earth on the crisp finish.
NV “Solera” Unusual wine, they don’t sell but offer it to club members, made in the solera method with wines left over from each harvest, brick in color with cooked fruit and cigar box on the nose, leather on the fruit and a nice balance.
Villa Creek Winery: Very small production.
2013 Roussanne Gold in color with green apples on the nose with full, ripe and floral fruit, herb notes on the finish.
2013 Garnacha Whole cluster fruit, dark purple with red licorice on the nose, silky bright red fruit, firm acidity on the moderate to long finish.
2012 “High Road” GSM blend, dark purple with crushed red berries and green herbs on the nose, juicy dark chocolate on finish with some green tannin at the end.
Shale Oak Winery: Very modern looking wine room, Cassie hooked me up.
2013 Albarino Light gold with cooked asparagus on the nose, moderate fruit and a nice balance, tasty.
2012 Zinfandel From 60 year old vines, dark purple with a big, brambly nose, chewy with some mint notes on the fruit.
2012 Petit Verdot Dark red to black, fresh herbs on the nose, concentrated and silky and nicely balance.
LXV Wines: A boutique winery with the tasting room in downtown Paso Robles with juice from the Willow Creek AVA and art on the walls from the KarmaSutra.
2014 “Summer Satine” 100% Viognier, yellow with a greenish tint, earth and floral notes on the nose, earth notes on the balanced fruit.
2013 “Crimson Jewel” Brunello clone of Sangiovese and Petite Sirah, dark red with graphite on the nose, dusty, chewy and balanced on the long finish. Very nice.
2013 “Lovers Spell” Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon, dark purple, closed nose, chunky, mint notes on the fruit, still young.