Mar 1, 2015

Paso Robles Rhone Rangers 2015

Heading to Paso Robles is always an exciting time. The area is chock full of great tasting rooms filled with quality wines. To have an opportunity to taste a whole lot of these wines in one place is just too good not to do. The Annual Paso Robles Rhone Rangers event is a fabulous way and one not to be missed. Where else can you get so many top producers in one place for so little? Special thanks to Jason Haas for the hookup.

The wonderful Broken Earth Winery
Due to some poor scheduling on our part we again missed the morning seminar. The "Rhone Essentials" According to the website, the seminar gives you a taste of a top example of each of the principal categories of Paso Robles Rhone wines as you hear from winemakers and principals who have chosen the Rhone Ranger route in Paso Robles, and who are forging the area's reputation as California's "Rhone Zone". Next year for sure...

Broken Earth Winery ordered up a spectacular day for a crackin tasting event. With a few folks doing pre check in (bloody good idea) the entry time was the drinking er tasting time. That's what we call thinking ahead Rhone Rangers.

We headed on in to the massive barrel room that had been laid out in an easy to find what you were looking for layout and to their credit had a wonderful selection of wine tasting appropriate cheeses and bottled water and stacks of red solo cups (there were a couple wankers who still spat in the dump buckets).

One of the constants at an event where there are a lot of choices is where to start. There is the whites then the reds from left to right or one end to the other. On this day it was a completely different approach. It was straight over to a standard in the Rhone world to get a standard setting taste.

Ted the good time guy from Cass Winery
With a bar setting taste from Tablas Creek it was off on a mission to taste the rest (or at least as many as we could get to). The list was long and we were off to get our share. There were so many very good wines but there was also a few disappointments, but overall a great selection of wines to go taste. Check out the full list of Rhone Ranger wineries HERE. Pay them a visit and tell em we sent you.
The question is always asked, what were your favorites? Generally we skirt the answer completely because we never get to taste everything and are not comfortable just picking from what we tasted. We hate to think that someone deserving of praise was overlooked. This time we decided to mention a few from what we tasted that were standouts due to the combination of price and drinkability and mostly just because we liked them. Mostly because a counter thought is that why should no one gets praise because we did not complete the task. So here are some of the standouts from what we tasted.

2011 Alta Colina GSM
2012 Diablo Negro, Petite Sirah
2010 Derby Wine Estates 'Fifteen 10' Red Rhone Blend
2012 Ecluse Wines Rendition
Four Lanterns Rosé
2012 Halter Ranch Cotes de Paso, Red Rhone Blend
2012 Hearst Ranch Vineyard Petite Sirah
2012 Austin Hope Grenache
2011 Law Estate Wines Sagacious, Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre
2011 Michella Vineyard & Winery Shameless, GSM
2012 Tablas Creek Cotes de Tablas
2010 Vina Robles Syree

Keep in mind this is the short list. Look, this event is one of the best values in tasting, well organized in a great venue (Broken Earth Winery) all kinds of well matched cheese from Vivant fine cheese. Never get caught up with trying to have fancy cheese at a big tasting, as most don't pair with many wines and will quickly overpower the more delicate wines. Great group of three cheeses to choose from again.
A crackin event to put on your calendar so you don't miss another one.


Happy Wine Adventures,
Cheers,
 
WineWalkabout