Wine Country

News and discussions about wine, the wine industry, and those who love wine, along the Central Coast of California.

Flickr member Damian Gadal

New wineries in Santa Barbara County could face new rules if local leaders approve a list of proposed changes to the county's Winery Ordinance. 

Tom Wilmer

    

Come along and join Tom Wilmer at Larner Vineyard in Santa Ynez Valley.

California drought amounts to mixed blessing for winemakers this harvest

Dec 9, 2014
Julian Del Gaudio

When you walk around Tablas Creek vineyard in Paso Robles, there are few obvious signs that California is in one of its worst droughts on record.

“It actually looks less different than you would expect grapevines have evolved to grow well in climates that are dry” says Jason Haas who runs this vineyard.

Grapes have their origins in the Middle East and Mediterranean, two regions with similar and sometimes even drier climates than the Central Coast.

Vines have adapted ways to protect the plant when rainfall is scarce and that included changes to the fruit production.

Video Still: Santa Rita Hills Winegrowers Alliance

Wine Spectator is out with its Top 100 Wines list for 2014, including wines from producers wordwide, and only one California wine cracked the Top 10 this year.

Lompoc's Brewer-Clifton 2012 Pinot Noir Santa Rita Hills came in at No. 8.

One of the winery's founders, Greg Brewer, says when he found out about the ranking he was just as thrilled for the Lompoc area as he was for his winery.

Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance

Vintners in the Paso Robles Wine Growing Region will now get the chance to be far more specific on their labels as to where their grapes were grown. The Federal Government announced Thursday the creation of several new American Viticultural Areas (AVA).

The greater Paso Robles AVA will still be the headline regional signifier, but if at least 85-percent of the grapes come from within one of the eleven smaller zones, then that specific area can be signified on the label as well.

Robert Hall, Local Winery Founder, Passes Away

Oct 7, 2014
Robert Hall Winery website

Robert Hall, the founder of the Paso Robles winery that bears his name, passed away Saturday according to a letter to the media released Monday morning.

A winery spokesperson says the 85-year-old died peacefully at his home from complications related to an extended illness. Hall fell in love with the idea of winemaking during a trip to the South of France in the 1970s and eventually chose the Central Coast as the location for his vineyards and winery. His vision was realized when he began making wine in 2001.

He is survived by his wife Margaret and his three daughters.

Flickr member Sharon Mollerus

Wine Enthusiast Magazine is out with its annual list of the 100 best wine restaurants in the United States, and two Central Coast locations made the cut.

Les Marchands in Santa Barbara was selected for its blend of European and local wines showcasing small grower-producers "that make wine in a natural, noninterventionist style."

San Luis Obispo's Novo Restaurant made the list for its large selection of wines made within a 60 mile radius.

Flickr member Dan'o

The Central Coast is well known for its award-winning wines, and in recent years, the Paso Robles region has become a favorite of wine critics.  

The area also faces challenges from drought and rapid growth.

Randol White shares insight into the many aspects of our local wine industry during his latest interview.

Information on the 32nd Paso Robles Wine Festival can be found at PasoWine.com

Wine Institute

Eco-friendly wines and winery events are featured this month as part of the Wine Institute's third-annual Down to Earth celebrations in California.

The month is aimed at bringing attention to the state's leadership in sustainable winegrowing and winemaking.

"Our California Sustainable Winegrowing Program leads the world in comprehensiveness and size with wineries and vineyards that produce nearly three-quarters of California’s wine grapes and wine participating,” said Bobby Koch, President and CEO of Wine Institute.

The Paso Robles CAB Collective

Apr 1, 2014

The Paso Robles wine region is best known for its zinfandels and Rhone style wines, but cabernet and Bordeaux varietals have made their mark in the area, too.  A grass-roots non-profit, The Paso Robles CAB Collective, highlights these wines with their event, CABs of Distinction.  Central Coast Wine Classic Founder and Chairman, Archie McLaren, talks about the event and the wines that inspired it with Cynthia Lohr of J. Lohr Winery and Daniel Daou of Daou Vineyards.

Flickr member Cielo de la Paz

A growing number of wine regions throughout the world are working to protect the names associated with their geographic locations. Santa Barbara County wineries are joining that effort this week at a meeting in France.

Wednesday evening on KCBX News, we spoke with Jason Hass of Tablas Creek about his "after the rain" blog post.