Wine Tasting @ Maloy O'Neill
Another small family owned and opererated vineyard and winery. They specialize in premium estate grown wines that they produce in limited quanitities. They are one of the wineries in the area that still hand bottles their wines.
Cabernet Sauvignon is the flagship variety, but other premium varietals include Merlot, Syrah, Zinfandel, Petite Sirah, Sangiovese, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, Chardonnay, Muscat Canelli, and Malvasia Bianca. In all, Maloy O’Neill Vineyards in Paso Robles offers up to 36 wines each year — all within a total production of 5,000 cases.
They have recently built a new tasting room which has a large bar area.
5725 Union Road
Wine tasting @ Clautiere
The guide books describe Clautiere as "A tasting room like no other. Think Edward Scissorhands meets the Mad Hatter at the Moulin Rouge." I have to admit- it had a different vibe then the other wineries we visited- but in a fun rather than strange way. The tasting room in an old farmhouse is painted in vivid purples and reds - with geometric designs- much like their labels. There are two big boxes of wigs and hats when you enter - and you are encouraged to put them on while you taste. The art on the walls is a little out there- lots of neon and burleque themed.
Outside is really beautiful. There are iron and mosaic scultpures around the yard - designed by owner Claudine Blackwell.
The creative forces behind Clautiere Vineyard are Claudine Blackwell and Terry Brady. Between them, they boast résumé listings as varied as accountant, restaurant owners, fashion designer, welder, landscape designer and, lately, winemakers.
Clautiere Vineyard is also gaining critical praise. After submitting seven wines to the San Francisco Chronicle competition last year, they walked away with seven medals, included one double gold and “best of class” for their cabernet sauvignon.
Holy Wine Batman
"Quaint, sort of, downtown"
Paso Robles, as I am told by the local librairian, once had a nice little downtown, but many buildings were destroyed by their Earthquake several years back. Oh well, this is Wine Country baby! People are in this area of the Central Coast to visit wineries and stop here on the way. The small downtown is very walkable but very small as well. Only a few interesting shops, but the community is trying to build back up. It does have some nice restaurants with exceptional wine lists. They also have a great wine tasting festival in mid-May.