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  • Writer's pictureNicole Leonetti

Epoch Estate Wines

I recently had the opportunity to attend an LA Wine Writers’ Luncheon hosted by Epoch Estate Wines.  Since I am a huge Paso Robles fan, I was a bit embarrassed that I had not tried Epoch wines before.  The luncheon was held at A.O.C in Brentwood and was a four-course meal with two wines paired with each course.  The highlight of the experience was that their winemaker – Jordan Fiorentini – was there as well sharing the story of Epoch wines along with her impressive wine story.  Originally from Atlanta, Jordan attended Grad School at UC Davis and went on to work at wineries throughout Italy.  She worked at a number of prestigious wineries in Napa and Sonoma and then joined Epoch in 2010.  Jordan was instrumental in creating the impeccable style of Epoch Estate Wines. 


Epoch Estate Wines is owned by Bill and Liz Armstrong who they had their first vintage in 2007.  They are hyper-focused on quality and start with organic and biodynamic farming practices.  Their wines come from grapes that are 100% estate grown in Paso Robles from their three legendary vineyards – Paderewski, Catapult, and York Mountain.  They are known for their artisanal Rhone wines and have exclusive tasting experiences in their beautiful tasting room. 


Back to the luncheon!  In full transparency, I don’t typically have the opportunity to attend fancy events such as this.  Having worked in the events industry for the past 20+ years, in these situations I would typically be behind the scenes having a panic attack hoping everything is going smoothly.  With this on my mind I was intent on enjoying every minute of this experience.  As soon as we walked in the private dining room, we were given a glass of the 2023 Rosé poured by the winemaker herself.  Jordan informed us that this wine was just bottled the week prior, and I was instantly transported to Paso.  This Rosé is a blend of Mourvèdre, Grenache, and Syrah – the grapes coming from all three of the Epoch vineyards. 


While Jordan was telling us the story of Epoch, we sipped on the 2022 White which is a blend of Grenache Blanc, Viognier, and Roussanne.  This wine burst with freshness and minerality.  I was especially intrigued when Jordan told us that each of the different grape varieties of this wine were aged in different vessels (concrete for the Grenache Blanc, large oak casks for the Viognier, and small oak barrels for the Roussanne). 


It was then time to begin the lunch of a lifetime where each bite was better than the last and every sip paired perfectly with the corresponding course.  I have detailed the lunch and pairings below – but want to highlight that the 2019 Block B Syrah was pure magic!  I will be dreaming about that wine for quite some time. 




First Course:

Beets and Lentils

Charred Peppers, Leeks, Sumac Labneh & Walnuts

2021 Sensibility, 100% Grenache (Paderewski Vineyard)

2021 York Mountain Grenache, 100% Grenache (York Mountain Vineyard)

 

Second Course:

Maple Leaf Duck Breast, Apples, Treviso & Pedro Ximénez

2021 Veracity, 43% Mourvèdre, 34% Grenache, 23% Syrah (Paderewski, York Mountain, and Catapult Vineyards)

2019 Ingenuity, 71% Petite Syrah, 14% Mourvèdre, 12% Grenache, 3% Syrah (Paderewski Vineyard)

 

Third Course:

Wagyu Oxtail, Carrot Purée, Toum, Shata

& Spiced Flatbread

2019 Block B, 100% Syrah (Paderewski Vineyard)

2019 York Mountain Syrah, 100% Syrah (York Mountain Vineyard)

 

Fourth Course:

3 Cheese Plate with accompaniments

2018 Tempranillo, 85% Tempranillo co-fermented with Graciano, Syrah, and Grenache (Paderewski Vineyard)



 

I urge you to check out Epoch Estate Wines on your next trip to Paso Robles.  If you need any additional Paso recommendations, be sure to check out my guide here: Paso Robles Guide

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