We love the wine region of Paso Robles! Is it the terroir? We think it must be. It’s the most important force in making distinct wines that reflect the place where they are grown. When you consider the seasonal climate changes of rain, fog and high temperatures along with the soil and add to it the cowboy flavor that remains in the valley, it is pure magic. It truly makes for a wonderful adventure among the vines.
It not the hokey pokey. It’s wine, good food and friends. That’s what it’s all about! We met Chuck and Tammy last year at Flying Flags and hit it off immediately. We had lots in common and enough things that were different to make for hours of interesting conversations. We vowed to keep in touch and get together the next time we headed through Paso Robles. True to our word we looked them up and set a date for wining and dining. What a treat! Chuck and Tammy were going to pick us up, no getting lost, and show us the Paso Robles they love.
First stop was food because, of course, Michele was starving! Fish Gaucho in downtown Paso Robles is a place they had been dying to try and we are always up for Mexican food! Light and healthy Mexican food is what they do. We were not disappointed! Fish Gaucho is California Mexican food with a Tequila Bar. Next time we will have to partake of the tequila but not before a wine tasting trip!
One of the many reasons Mexican food hits the spot is they can get chips and salsa to the table faster than you can blink an eye. But this was not just any chips and salsa, it was a trio of salsas and guacamole served with warm tortilla chips! The trio: salsa rojo + avocado tomatillo + piña jicama pico de gallo. The avocado tomatillo packs a killer punch for something that looks so mild. Shockingly good! Our lunch was definitely off to a rippingly good start!
Oh yeah! El Jefe, (The Boss) is the boss with Verde Chicken, cubed roasted butternut squash, kale and the best tomatillo sauce with a sunny side up egg. Sprinkled with pepitas to top it off! Yummers!
Chuck orders Fresh catch Halibut Street Tacos with shaved cabbage and pickled onions and they are beautiful to behold! Tammy gets the Carnitas Street Tacos with jalapeño pineapple salsa. When she says, “I’m so full!” When a friends says you can have a bite of their food, take the biggest bite humanly possible before they change their mind!
“The best wines are the ones we drink with friends!” We have been long time fans of Justin wines. How serendipitous that it was the first stop on Chuck and Tammy’s wine tour. Wine tasting at Justin is First Class all the way! From the reservations for a tasting table on the patio and your own personal wine server, to the high quality wines they produce! Justin is a destination, an experience not just a tasting stop. We were fortunate to get a library tasting of the 2012 Isosoceles.
“Drink what makes you happy with friends who make you laugh.” The wines are sophisticated and complex. There is pleasure in every sip. The joy of the wine tasting experience is not just the varied nuances of the wines but where the wine takes you in the conversations you share with your fellow wine lovers.
Sometimes you even discover you have the same Blue Angles watches. It’s the little things that great great memories!
Our pouring host Art served up our wines and gave us the royal treatment!
Next stop on the Wine Tour was Castoro Cellars, maker of “Damn Fine Wines” The beaver is their logo and of course a great story! When owner Niels Udsen was a boy his younger brothers couldn’t pronounce “brother” and it came out beaver. The name stuck with him and when he traveled to Italy for wine research they told him beaver in Italian was Castoro. It all makes sense now!
Once every 6-9 years they make an extra special wine. 33 years of producing wines with the same wine maker for 31 of those years! Pretty rare!
Life is to short to drink cheap wine! We have been blessed with exquisite taste in wine and friends! 🙂