1st Stop in the Paso Robles Wine Region
Tasting Room Hours: Daily 10 am to 5 pm.
Wine Tours at 10:30 am and 2:00 pm.
Great First Impression
Our 1st encounter at Tablas Creek was meeting Steve and asking if we could join the 10:30 tour. Then we discovered that Steve would be our guide throughout the tour – what a great experience! Steve was a wealth of information from the vineyard to the wine making process to the wine tasting. I have not experienced a tour like this before and the tour included a grafting demonstration. I love when you can broaden your knowledge at a winery and really get to know where the wine you are tasting comes from and how it is made.
Quality Wines Made One Grape At A Time
History of Tablas Creek
- Founded by the Perrin family (Chateau de Beaucastel) and Robert Haas (importer and founder of Vineyard Brands).
- Vines imported from Franch (Mourvedre, Grenache Noir, Syrah, and Counoise – reds & Roussanne, Viognier, Marsanne, and Grenache Blanc – whites).
- The imported vines must pass a 3-year USDA testing program and then are propagated and grafted in their on-site nursery. The vines are used to plant their organic estate vineyard.
- Dry farming and harvest when the grapes are completely ripe.
- Little Intervention when it comes to the winemaking process.
- Esprit de Beaucastel (Mourvedre-based) & Esprit de Beaucastel Blanc (Roussanne-based). One Word – OUTSTANDING!!!
Steve stated there is a good majority of limestone on the Tablas Creek property. He stated that the grapes emit some type of acid from their roots in order to stimulate growth and locate water. I really enjoyed the grafting demonstration (see photos below). Steve talked about dry farming and harvesting when the grapes are completely ripe.
Limestone, part of a Whale Bone & Rosemary (Photo by RSheridan)
Grafting Demonstration (Photos by RSheridan)
Steve explained the winemaking process and it is such a complex, unique process. Each grape varietal is hand-harvested when the grapes are completely ripe. Then each grape varietal is fermented separately and eventually the grape varietals are blended. This process produces complex, better balanced and rich wines. Here is where it gets unique – use NATIVE yeast fermentation (no additives) and NEUTRAL French oak barrels – to me this means a more fruit-forward wine! Tablas Creek truly makes winemaking an art and quality wines made one grape at a time.
Wine Tasting (Photo by RSheridan)
- Vermintino 2010
The 2010 Vermentino (a traditional Mediterranean varietal) – crisp & refreshing, aromatic & citrus – right balance of acidity and a palate pleaser. Fermented in stainless steel to bring out the minerality of the grapes.
(Photo by RSheridan)
- Grenache Blanc 2009
- Cotes de Tablas Blanc 2010
- Patelin de Tablas Blanc 2010
- Rose 2010
- Grenache 2008
- Cotes de Tablas 2009
- Patelin de Tablas 2010
The 2010 Patelin de Tablas (red blend) – serve anytime and for any occasion. Syrah-based (dark fruit) with Grenache (acidity), Mourvedre (adds depth) and Counoise (a twist of complexity). The grapes to make this wine varietal are sourced from 7 different vineyards. You can drink now or cellar up to 10 years.
(Photo by RSheridan)
- Esprit de Beaucastel Blanc 2009
- Esprit de Beaucastel 2008
I loved the 2008 Esprit de Beaucastel! This wine is aromatic, rich, fruit-forward, and a hint of spice. I wanted more just after a taste it was that amazing!
- Tannat 2008
Steve was talking about the Tannat grape varietal on our wine tour and he could tell we were interested enough in this grape varietal to add it to the tasting menu. He stated this is his wine choice with steak. The 2008 Tannat (a Basque style) is INTENSE fruit (need food with this for sure) with the right amount of spice – palate pleasing with a great finish – beautiful color in the glass (purple/black inky color). Steve stated that Tannat is blended with Cabernet Sauvignon or Cabernet Franc. This varietal is moved to small barrels to age for 18 months.
Tablas Creek Cellar (Photo by RSheridan)