First-ever Garagiste Festival in Paso Robles
Need an excuse to make a trip up to Paso Robles and the Central Coast wine country? How’s this: The first Paso Garagiste Festival “celebrating the artisan winemaker” takes place Nov. 12 at Windfall Farms. Put on by PasoGaragiste.com, the festival focuses on wineries producing fewer than 1,200 cases a year. Those bottles from cutting-edge producers can be hard to find, so this is a chance to taste wines from a new generation of winemakers committed to high quality and small production.
Wineries participating (40 in all) include Aaron Wines, Alta Colina, Bodegas M Winery, Brochelle Vineyards, Caliza Winery, Cloak and Dagger Wines, J Dusi Wines, Giornata Wines, Grizzly Republic Winery, Hammersky Vineyards, Indigene Cellars, Jalama Wines, La Filice Winery, Nicora Wines, Per Cazo Cellars, Poalillo Vineyards, Ranchero Cellars, Red Zeppelin Winery, Rendarrio Vineyards, Stanger Vineyards, Symbiosis Wines, Tassajara Cellars, Vin Alegre Winery and Vines on the Marycrest. Sounds like a lot of fun.
Plan on some learning, too, at seminars given on Nov. 12 by Saxum’s Justin Smith, Adelaida’s Terry Culton, Tablas Creek’s Neil Collins and Cypher’s Christian Tietje. The front row at each seminar will be reserved for students at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s wine and viticulture program, which will also benefit from some of the proceeds. Check the Garagiste Festival website for info and times.
Tickets to the main tasting, 2 to 5 p.m., are $55 ($65 at the door). For $100 you can buy a VIP all-access pass, which includes tasting, seminars and after-party. To note: No one under 21 will be admitted to the festival.
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-- S. Irene Virbila