Insider Guide: CA's Central Coast

Get to know one of the West's most beautiful regions with our travel editors' favorite spots

Central Coast wineries

Your guide to great places to taste on the Central Coast

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    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: Adelaida Cellars

      Their Viking Estate Syrah has recently won accolades along with their HMR Estate Pinots planted on the region’s oldest Pinot Noir vines.
      $10 tasting
      5805 Adelaida Rd., Paso Robles, CA; 800/676-1232
      www.adelaida.com

    • Baileyana

      Edna Valley: Baileyana

      Winemaker Christian Roguenant’s soft, silky Pinot Noirs are laced with lots of black cherry and a touch of sage. The Chardonnay always has hints of pear and, in warmer years, pineapple and tropical fruit.
      $5 tasting
      5828 Orcutt, San Luis Obispo, CA; 805/269-8200
      www.baileyana.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: Clautiere Vineyard

      At once spare and whimsical, Clautiere’s grounds are a good example of how garden ornaments and the thoughtful placement of a few plants can set a scene. Mosaic-tiled spheres hang from oaks and wrought-iron sculptures rise from grasses—creations of husband-and-wife duo Claudine Blackwell and Terry Brady, who have built a winery that’s anything but stuffy.
      1340 Penman Springs Rd., Paso Robles, CA; 805/237-3789
      www.clautiere.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Templeton: Clavo Cellars

      Try the Rhône- and Bordeaux-inspired blends at Clavo Cellars downtown. Especially the “Dreamer” Petite Sirah.
      $5 tasting
      315 S. Main St., Templeton, CA; 805/226-0174
      www.clavocellars.com

      Sunset loves Clavo Cellars! Special discount for Chase Sapphire credit card holders when you mention this offer: 15% discount on all wines for sale in our tasting room. Offer valid through March 15, 2012.

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: Denner Vineyards

      Taste beautifully crafted Rhône varieties in the hilltop, modern winery. The Viognier is especially balanced and yummy.
      $10 tasting
      5414 Vineyard Dr., Paso Robles, CA; 805/239-4287
      www.dennervineyards.com

    • Paso Robles, CA Eberle Winery

      Paso Robles: Eberle Winery

      Syrah king Gary Eberle’s east-side winery has 16,000 square feet of caves and a sweeping view.
      3810 State 46 E., Paso Robles, CA; 805/238-9607
      www.eberlewinery.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Edna Valley: Edna Valley Vineyard

      Best known for Chardonnays with a peachy character and sea-salt finish, but the Pinot Noirs, with dark, tar characters and meaty fruit flavors, are coming on strong. Jack Niven Hospitality Center has an extensive selection of wine-related books, clothing, and gourmet foods.
      $5 tasting
      2585 Biddle Ranch Rd., San Luis Obispo, CA; 888/390-9463 or 805/544-5855
      www.ednavalleyvineyard.com

    • First Crush

      Paso Robles: First Crush Winemaking Experience

      Make a couple of cases with First Crush in Paso Robles. It starts with picking grapes, then moves on to weighing, crushing, and de-stemming. Come back within a few days to punch down the cap, then again to learn the ins and outs of blending, with your own wine as guinea pig. Create your own label and, finally, bottle your wine and take it home. (If you have to bail after the first day, Silver Horse winemaker Stephen Kroener will tend and ship your batch.)
      Seminars on Saturdays
      From $45 <
      2995 Pleasant Road, San Miguel, CA; 805/434 2772
      www.firstcrushwinemaking.com

      Sunset loves First Crush Winemaking Experience! Special discount for Chase Sapphire credit card holders when you mention this offer: 10% discount on winemaking tours, classes, event and harvest getaways. Offer valid through March 15, 2012.

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines

      Make a point to taste the Cabernet from the Hilltop Vineyard, viewable from the light-filled tasting room.
      $5 tasting for Cuvée wines, other tastings free
      6169 Airport Rd., Paso Robles, CA; 805/239-8900
      www.jlohr.com

    • Paso Robles, CA Justin Winery Pasture

      Paso Robles: Justin Vineyards & Winery

      It’s famous for its “Isosceles” blend.
      $10 tasting
      11680 Chimney Rock Rd., Paso Robles, CA; 800/726-0049
      www.justinwine.com

      Sunset loves Justin Vineyards & Winery! Special discount for Chase Sapphire credit card holders when you mention this offer: Purchase a tour and tasting for one and receive a complimentary tour and tasting. Excludes Zinfandel Festival, Paso Wine Festival, Harvest Wine Weekend, and Isoceles Pre Release Weekend. Offer valid through March 15, 2012.

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: L'Aventure Winery

      The “adventurer” here is Frenchman Stephan Asseo, whose Cabernet and Syrah blends have become cult wines in these parts.
      Closed Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays except by appointment
      $10 tasting
      2815 Live Oak Rd., Paso Robles, CA; 805/227-1588
      www.aventurewine.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: Linne Calodo

      Some of the region's most interesting red blends are poured in this sleek tasting room .
      $10 tasting
      3030 Vineyard Dr., Paso Robles, CA; 805/227-0797
      www.linnecalodo.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: Meridian Vineyards

      One of Paso's biggest and best-known producers, but in the picturesque stone winery you can taste some limited-release wines not available in the marketplace. Beautiful grounds.
      Tasting from $5
      7000 State 46 E., Paso Robles, CA; 805/226-7133
      www.meridianvineyards.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: Paso Wine Centre

      Here, each sip comes with a bonus for your conscience: All tasting proceeds go to Wine for Wells (wineforwells.org), a nonprofit dedicated to providing clean drinking water to the billion people worldwide who currently go without. Daunted by the selection of wine? Sunset wine editor Sara Schneider’s top pick is Torrin’s Grenache-based “Maven.”
      1240 Park St., Paso Robles, CA; 805/239-9156
      www.pasorobleswinecenter.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Templeton: Peachy Canyon Winery

      Zinfandel is the signature wine here; don't miss the one labeled "Especial." The building that houses the tasting room the Old Bethel School House goes back to the 1880s.
      $5 tasting fee
      1480 N. Bethel Rd., Templeton, CA; 805/239-1918
      www.peachycanyon.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: Robert Hall Winery

      An arched showplace on the east side, Robert Hall offers plenty of yummy chocolate and Merlot tastings. The wraparound tasting bar gives way outside to a terrace with rich views and not one but two bocce courts.
      $8 tasting for reserve wines, other tastings $5
      3443 Mill Rd., Paso Robles, CA; 805/239-1616
      www.roberthallwinery.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Avila Beach: Salisbury Vineyards

      You can check out the converted two-room schoolhouse that is Salisbury Vineyards any day of the week, but Sunday afternoon is when it really gets jumping. The Schoolhouse Rock Concert Series has live music, barbecue, tours, and lots and lots of Salisbury’s award-winning wine. It’s about as family-friendly as it comes—in fact, you may find yourself doing the Mashed Potato with a bunch of 6-year-olds.
      $5 entry, $5 tasting, barbecue from $5
      6985 Ontario Rd., Avila Beach, CA; 805/595/9463
      www.salisburyvineyards.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Edna Valley: Stephen Ross Wine Cellars

      Visit the tasting room of this vineyard exclusively dedicated to Pinot Noirs.
      Closed Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays
      4910 Edna Rd., Ste. A, San Luis Obispo, CA; 805/594-1318
      www.stephenrosswine.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: SummerWood Winery

      There are a lot of appealing spaces at this west side winery for enjoying a glass or two and the view from the spacious tasting room with fireplace to an expansive deck and gazebo outside. The view from the tasting bar is into the tank room, with equipment specially designed to treat grapes gently.
      Tasting from $5
      2175 Arbor Rd., Paso Robles, CA; 805/227-1365
      www.summerwoodwine.com

    • Tablas Creek Vineyard

      Paso Robles: Tablas Creek Vineyard

      The white and red Rhône blends at the ridge-top tasting room are groundbreaking and delicious. Don’t miss the unusual Vin de Paille Sacrerouge 2006, made with only Mourvèdre grapes.
      $10 tasting, free tours
      9339 Adelaida Rd., Paso Robles, CA; 805/237-1231
      www.tablascreek.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Edna Valley: Talley Vineyards

      Drive through a third-generation farm producing fields of cilantro and bell peppers to get to this winery, known for its Rincon and Rosemary’s Vineyard Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
      $8 tasting
      3031 Lopez Dr., Arroyo Grande, CA; 805/489-0446
      www.talleyvineyards.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Paso Robles: Thacher Winery

      Pair a picnic with the 2007 Triumvirate Reserve Zinfandel, which has won three gold medals so far in 2010, from one of the best vineyards on the west side, and take home their 2007 Controlled Chaos, a 2010 San Francisco Chronicle double-gold-medal winner.
      Closed Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays except by appointment
      $7 tasting
      8355 Vineyard Dr.; 805/237-0087
      www.thacherwinery.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Edna Valley: Tolosa Winery

      Garnet-colored Pinot Noirs with plush, spiced berries and flinty Chardonnays are typical of the valley’s taste profiles.
      $8 tasting
      4910 Edna Rd., San Luis Obispo, CA; 866/782-0300 or 805/782-0300
      www.tolosawinery.com

    • Wineries in the West

      Templeton: Turley Wine Cellars

      Larry Turley makes cult wine out of Paso Zinfandel. If you're a Zin fan, you have to try his.
      $10 tasting
      2900 Vineyard Dr., Templeton, CA; 805/434-1030
      www.turleywinecellars.com

    • Paso Robles, CA Justin Winery Pasture

      Templeton: Venteux Vineyards

      Stay at Venteux Vineyards, where you can stroll through the vines, sip Rhône-inspired blends by the stone fireplace, chat with the winemaker, and relax in your farmhouse-style room. Gourmet breakfast is served on the long wraparound porch. Complimentary tasting for guests.
       venteuxvineyards.com
      1795 Las Tablas Rd., Templeton, CA
      $$$$
      805/369-0127

      Sunset loves Venteux Vineyards! Special discount for Chase Sapphire credit card holders when you mention this offer: 10% discount on purchase of 3 bottles or more and a free Reserve tasting in the tasting room. Offer valid through March 15, 2012.

    • Wineries in the West

      Templeton: Wild Horse Winery & Vineyards

      An interesting stop for the wide range of wines, including Pinot Noir. Just don’t feed the llama; it spits.
      $10 tasting
      1437 Wild Horse Winery Ct., Templeton, CA; 805/788-6300
      www.wildhorsewinery.com



    • Updated March 2011. Please be sure to confirm all details before visiting these locations.

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