2023 Paso Robles Guide
I have been visiting Paso Robles for over 10 years and each time I visit I find that there is more to discover. This guide will be your one-stop shop to check out my favorite places to stay, eat, and--most importantly--drink wine in Paso. I will continue to add to this list as I explore more of what Paso Robles has to offer!
Located less than 4 hours from Los Angeles, Paso Robles is one of my favorite wine regions. Such interesting wines, the friendliest people, amazing food, and some of the most scenic drives I’ve ever witnessed. Paso Robles is the “wild west” of wine making – but in the best possible way. They do not follow all of the rules, so you are sure to find a wine you love there. While Cabernet Sauvignon and Bordeaux blends are plentiful in Paso, you will also find Rhone varieties, Zinfandel, Tempranillo, and much more! I just have a few items to note when visiting Paso. The first is the temperature swings... or you can use the fancy term: diurnal range. Diurnal range is the gap in temperature between the hottest and coolest temperature in a day. Paso’s diurnal range makes for fabulous wine – but also means super-hot days and chilly evenings so always dress in layers! Second item of note is the potentially high ABVs of Paso wines. That is the alcohol by volume. You may wonder why you are feeling the wine faster than usual during a day of wine tasting. That may be because you are used to drinking wines between 12.5% - 13.5% ABV, however, if you take a look at the bottle you may find that you are drinking a 15% ABV wine in Paso…consider yourself warned!
PLACES TO STAY:
Allegretto Vineyard Resort ($$$)- Excellent resort option with a full-service restaurant, swimming pool, and spa. *Dog-Friendly*
Best Western Black Oak ($) – Affordable option in a convenient location.
The Piccolo ($$$) – Excellent boutique hotel in downtown Paso Robles! They have a rooftop bar, a wine lounge and…. a champagne vending machine in their lobby! The Piccolo is in a super convenience locations just steps away from the shops, restaurants and tasting rooms of Paso.
Stay on the Vineyard ($$) – If you’ve ever dreamed of staying on a vineyard, this is your chance! They have two beautiful rental suites situated on a beautiful vineyard of Zinfandel. This place has the loveliest owners, and they provide you with tasty pastries and snacks during your stay. Make sure you plan time to catch the amazing sunset views and visit their chicken coop! Also, the stargazing opportunities are fabulous! I’m always excited by a good Milky Way sighting!
Bodega de Edgar – I love Bodega de Edgar and am enjoying their new tasting room on Peachy Canyon Rd. Their focus is on Spanish wine and I encourage you to purchase any wine you like there because they sell out quickly. If Edgar is there, you should definitely talk to him because he has such a fascinating story! *Favorite Wine – 2020 La Guera (75% Albariño, 25% Torrontes) *Dog-Friendly*
Daou – This is where you come for a luxury tasting experience with the best views in Paso Robles. They make high-quality Bordeaux varieties and offer an array of tasting experiences. Daou also has food options while you enjoy their wine. I would suggest eating while you are there since they have a phenomenal culinary program. *Favorite Wine – 2020 Estate Mayote (39% Cabernet Franc, 34% Merlot, 27% Petit Verdot)
Denner Vineyards – Beautiful winery featuring Rhône and Bordeaux wines. Try to get a tour of the Barrel Room if you can – always so interesting to see. *Favorite Wine – 2020 Dirt Worshipper (98% Syrah, 2% Roussanne)
Hammersky – One of the most gorgeous settings for a wine tasting! I can just sit on their patio for hours! They also have a lovely rental house on the property that would be fabulous to stay in. *Favorite Wine – “Detained” Sparkling *Dog-Friendly*
Kiamie – They focus on Bordeaux blends. Beautiful, no-fuss place to taste extraordinary wines. We like to just sit outside in the afternoon with a bottle of wine. Bonus: they have dogs and goats! *Favorite Wine – 2018 Meritage (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot) *Dog-Friendly*
L’Aventure Winery – Splurge on the private tour and tasting experience where you can go through the caves and taste wine in their private wine library. *Favorite Wine – 2020 Optimus (58% Syrah, 31% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Petit Verdot) *Dog-Friendly*
Law Estate Wines - Beautiful winery focused on Rhône and Priorat style wine. 100% estate grown wine – glorious tasting views. *Favorite Wine – 2019 Sagacious (39% Mourvèdre , 31% Grenache, 30% Syrah)
LXV Winery - A women-owned winery making some of the most delicious wine in Paso. They have a cozy tasting room right in downtown Paso. Their Wine & Flavors pairing experience is not to be missed. *Favorite Wine – 2020 Reserve Sangiovese
ONX – While ONX has a nice tasting room in Tin City, I recommend going to the actual vineyard and booking an “experience”. Trust me! *Favorite Wine – 2017 Mad Crush (35% Grenache, 29% Tempranillo, 24% Mourvèdre, 5% Syrah, 5% Zinfandel, 2% Petite Sirah)
Parrish Family Vineyards - Specializing in Bordeaux varieties, this is a family-owned winery in the heart of Paso Robles. Of course, the wine is great, but they also have a fabulous food menu that you need to check out at your next tasting. *Favorite Wine – 2018 Four Chords (47% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Malbec, 18% Cabernet Franc, 11% Petit Verdot)
Whalebone – I love this family-run place – such lovely people, beautiful views, and great wine! Certain weekends they make delicious chili and share with everyone (grab a bowl if you can!). Also, they have the cutest dog, Bentley! *Favorite Wine – 2020 BOB Wine (76% Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Merlot, 3% Petit Verdot, 3% Syrah) *Dog-Friendly*
The Alchemist’s Garden ($$) – Opened in 2020, this is a cocktail-focused restaurant with a globally-influenced menu. If you can make it past their imaginative cocktail list, you need to try the Sweet Potato Quesadilla and/or the Duck Chalupa.
Firestone Brewery ($) – Nice, casual place for a beer after a long day of wine tasting. You can’t go wrong with any of their burgers and I always love their appetizer options!
Fish Gaucho ($$) – The perfect spot if you’ve been drinking wine all day and are ready to switch to tequila! Their Short Rib Tacos are my favorite – just pair with their Gaucho Margarita and I’m in heaven!
Hatch Rotisserie ($$) – Known for wood-fired comfort food, it’s a great place to meet wine industry people and get the Paso scoop. I love everything on their menu, but you must order the Crispy Potatoes with Hatch Ranch!
Hemmingway’s Steakhouse ($$$) – Hemmingway’s is relatively new to Paso and is a welcome addition to the dining scene. It has all of the favorites you would expect at a steakhouse – but they are elevated in unique ways that will automatically make you want to return to try more! The steak was perfection, but I was delighted by the Steak Tartare and the Baked Potato.
Jeffry’s Wine Country BBQ ($) – Perfect spot for lunch in Downtown Paso between wine tasting appointments. They have fun outdoor seating where you can enjoy their signature Tri-Tip and Pulled Pork. Also, don’t miss their Mac & Cheese!!
La Cosecha Bar + Restaurant ($$) – Fun place to share a multitude of delicious Spanish and Latin American dishes. They also have a fabulous cocktail program!
Thomas Hills Organics ($$$) – Farm-to-table restaurant in Downtown Paso. Their focus is on organic produce and grass-fed meats. I recommend starting your meal with their delicious charcuterie board.