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11/01/2009

AVA Spotlight: Paso Robles

Situated smack dab between Los Angeles and San Francisco, the beautiful AVA or American Viticultural Area of Paso Robles is home to a unique wine-grape growing climate that makes for complex, flavorful wines.


Paso Robles, originally named El Paso de Robles or “The Pass of the Oaks,” has a long history of wine-grape growing and winemaking, beginning in the late 1700s when Franciscan Friars arrived here. Today, the area boasts more than 180 wineries and 26,000 vineyard acres, many of which are run by small, family-owned growing operations.


This area of the central coast typically boasts a cool climate, but the Paso Robles area soaks in the sun thanks to the Santa Lucia mountain range, which blocks fog and cooler air from the Pacific Ocean during the day. In the growing season, nighttime temperatures do drop considerably, but the dramatic range in temperature provides ideal conditions for a number of grape varieties.


Paso Robles’ many microclimates make the area suitable for growing more than 40 different wine grape varietals, so there’s something for everyone. Cabernet sauvignon is the most widely planted varietal in the area, followed by merlot, zinfandel, syrah, chardonnay, petite sirah and sauvignon blanc, respectively.


In addition to rolling hills of vibrant vineyards, Paso Robles has a charming, historic downtown area full of boutiques, delicious restaurants and a variety of tasting rooms to explore. So get to know Paso Robles, whether in person, or through a bottle of its beautiful wine.


Source: Pasowine.com and “The Wine Bible” by Karen MacNeil
 

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Paso Robles offers beautiful views both day and night.

 

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