Experience Fall From Afar
October 22, 2020
As we welcome fall and winter, we find ourselves reflecting back on a year like no other in recent times. For most of us, life at home, work, and play is drastically different. As we continue to ‘pivot’ (aka the word of 2020), we extend our search in how to experience the things in life that provide joy, comfort, and a sense of normalcy.
In Paso Robles wine country, the harvest has not been delayed or postponed. Fruit comes off the vine when it’s ready and our winemakers are hard at work creating the next vintage, which will definitely be one to be remembered.
While Paso Wine Country is open and has been safely welcoming visitors, we want to share with you some ways you can stay connected to Paso from afar and still enjoy this harvest season.
It's all About the Wine
The definition of a virtual experience, as we know, has changed quite a bit over the last eight months. It’s no longer just joining a Zoom link to watch your favorite winemaker talk about their wines. Virtual experiences are now more interactive and come with so much more than a link to click. Wineries are now sending really fun home kits that include wine (of course), cheese, local products, recipes, playlists, and more.
Parrish Family Vineyard takes virtual tastings to another level with their monthly experience kits. These cool packages include two bottles of newly released Parrish wine, cheese from a local cheesemonger, tasting notes, a recipe pairing card, and an invite to join the special Winemaker Zoom.
ONX at Home is a remote wine lifestyle that provides people with inspirational wine experiences by bringing the wine country to their door in an era of an increasing need for connection. This Private Virtual Tasting Experience is by appointment, and your tasting kit will ship to arrive within a short time before your scheduled date to ensure the freshest wine possible. Conference in just yourself or with multiple participating households. Your ONX host will go into depth about the wines and the stories behind them, as well as walk you through the senses you use to taste and suggested food pairings on your request. Also, keep a lookout for ONX at Home for the Holidays.
Tablas Creek Vineyard has a couple of interesting virtual experiences worth checking-out. 1) Join Jason Haas on Zoom for an insider’s look through celebrity interviews. Jason’s guests are members of the wine industry from all of the various careers from distributors, to writers, to winemakers, to bloggers, marketing professionals, sommeliers, and wine festival managers. Every other week there’s an opportunity to learn about a different area of the wine industry. Purchase the special three-pack of wines to taste along with Jason and his celebrity guest. 2) Every other Friday winemaker Neil Collins virtually connects with other acclaimed makers and they talk shop! From Grenache clones to the Rhône movement, biodynamic farming, or unique varieties.
After being closed because of COVID-19, Mitchella Vineyard & Winery needed to get creative and find another way to reach guests. During an early morning, aha moment, Angela came up with the Tasting To-Go Box, a unique experience that combines a wine tasting flight and cheese pairing that you can enjoy in the comfort of your own home. Each adorable box of joy contains six 1-ounce vials of wine, with an optional cheese pairing.
The team at J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines has created a number of engaging activities to help you discover new wines and share virtual moments. Schedule a Private Virtual Tasting or take part in a Virtual Activity like How to Build the Perfect Holiday Charcuterie Board. Download a J. Lohr Zoom Background, test your J. Lohr super-knowledge by taking the Trivia Test, and dress your home with one of the many DYI’s like How to Make Succulent Cork Magnets. We hope you enjoy these ideas and that they bring you some added comfort during these unprecedented times, and, if so inspired, please #ShareTheLohr.
Other Awesome At-Home Wine Tasting Kits
And the Food
Now that we’ve got the wine covered for you, what about something delicious to serve alongside? Your Paso cravings can be sent directly to your home. Order our regional signature tri-tip, grass-fed steak or lamb, handmade pasta, local artisan olive oil, or handcrafted cheeses.
At Adelaida Springs Ranch, also home to Rangeland Wines, they raise natural grass-fed Angus cattle and Droper sheep to provide you with healthy and delicious meats. You can taste their approach of authentic and hands-on sustainability in the wines and animals the lovingly raise.
Oso Libre Winery raises pasture cattle on their 65-acre ranch. Their steers are grass-fed in open pastures and vineyards enjoying grasses, legumes, and water from the flowing creeks. The whole-farm sustainable practices are exemplified in the quality of Oso Libre’s beef.
Just over the hills to the west along the Pacific Ocean, you’ll find Stepladder Ranch & Creamery. At their dairy and creamery, Stepladder makes small-batch cheeses with milk from the heard of LaMancha goats. During the goat’s milk off-season they also make cow’s milk cheeses from the dairy science program at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. * We highly recommend joining their cheese club!
Olive trees are very prevalent in Paso Robles, as are small olive oil businesses. Olivas de Oro produces award-winning oils from their 160-acre farm in nearby Creston. The old-vine trees create bold flavors of herb, pepper, and citrus perfect for cooking, drizzling, and enjoying!
ETTO Pastificio takes Italian wisdom paired with American ingredients and Californian ingenuity. Their pasta is simple, unpretentious, and purely delicious. Order fresh and dried pasta, Italian pantry provisions, ETTO wine, and house-made sauces. *Buy a Big Bag of dried pasta to stock your pantry.
Other Ways to Stay Connected to Paso
We, Paso Robles Wine Country, have created a few other interactive and fun virtual ways to hangout with us and see what’s up in wine country. There is something for everyone, whether you are super wine geeky, want to ask your favorite winemaker a question, or get the lowdown on the harvest. You’re sure to be delighted and feel linked to your favorite wine region!
Paso Wine presents the Where Wine Takes You podcast, exploring the people, places, and wines of Paso Robles Wine Country. Each episode is an intimate journey with owners, winemakers, growers, and personalities as they discuss the places and wines that have shaped the Paso Robles Wine Region. Where Wine Takes You promises to be an interesting and educational podcast that tells the stories of our unique and authentic wine country. New episodes will be released every two weeks.
As we continue to socially separate and coalesce within our own bubbles, we still find the time to hangout with one another…. virtually speaking, of course. The Paso Wine Zoom Hangouts were created in spring 2020 as a way for Paso Wine fans to be able to still ‘visit’ with Paso winemakers. Shows are one hour long with host Christopher Taranto of Pasowine.com bringing different personalities together to discuss a multitude of topics, drink each others’ wines, and ‘hangout’ from the comfort of their own winery, office, or home. This unscripted, often funny dialogue provides a window into the personality of the Paso Wine region. Shows air live on Zoom and mirror to @PasoRoblesWine on Facebook every Thursday at 3 p.m. Go to pasowine.com to find details of the next show or enjoy a catalog of past shows.
Help Paso Robles Giveback
Time and time again, when a critical need arises, the Paso Robles wine community has proven that it can step up and lend support. Our local community creates solutions for challenges that require resources for those most affected.
2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic have presented monumental obstacles trials for many. Countless community members rely on a steady paycheck to pay utility bills, purchase groceries, and pay rent. Many workers have been furloughed, have had hours cut, or were simply laid off because of the pandemic. These aren’t just nameless statistics – they are our friends, neighbors, and colleagues.
We are proud to partner with must! charities on a new COVID Community Response Project that will directly impact families and individuals in our region. This Assistance Fund will be managed in partnership with ECHO (El Camino Homeless Organization), who has 19 years of experience helping the most vulnerable in our region.