FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Paso Robles, CA) - On Tuesday, January 30th, representatives from 23 Paso Robles wineries met at Tablas Creek Vineyard to form a regional chapter of the Rhone Rangers organization. This will be California's second regional chapter of the Rhone Rangers, a group dedicated to "advancing the knowledge of Rhone grapes grown in America and the enjoyment of the wines produced from those grapes".
Paso Robles, with its long growing season, dramatic diurnal temperature variance, unusual concentration of calcium-rich soils and diverse terrains between 800 and 2000 feet, has become a destination for Rhone producers and enthusiasts alike. In 1978, Gary Eberle planted California's first Syrah vines in his Estrella River Winery. In 1989, the Perrin brothers of Château de Beaucastel in Châteauneuf-du-Pape chose the hills in the western part of the Paso Robles AVA to found Tablas Creek. Today, Paso Robles is the fastest-growing wine region in California, home to over 170 bonded wineries and 26,000 vineyard acres. Nearly 80% of the winery members of the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance produce a Rhone wine, and a higher percentage of member wineries produce a Syrah than any other grape. More on Paso Robles is at www.pasowine.com.
The national wine press has noted the region's affinity for Rhone varietals. Decanter Magazine asserted the "potential for producing outstanding Rhone-style wines". Gourmet agrees: "Rhone varieties excel." Stephen Tanzer comments, "Paso Robles, in particular, is in the middle of a grape-growing boom, led by a handful of young winemakers who are crafting rich and satisfying wines from Rhone varieties."
The Rhone Rangers is based in Ukiah, California, and represents just under 200 winery members, 110 Professional and Grower Associates, and 800 Sidekick (consumer) members. The organization produces annual tastings in San Francisco (March), Los Angeles (April) and Seattle (July) and leads outreach to press, trade and consumers on American Rhone wines. Winery members come from California, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and New York, and consumer and associate members from around the United States. More information is available at www.rhonerangers.org.
Producers represented at the initial regional Rhone Rangers meeting included Adelaida Cellars, Anglim Winery, Arroyo Robles Winery, Calcareous Vineyard, Cass Winery, Chateau Margene, Clayhouse Vineyard, Eberle Winery, Edward Sellers Vineyards & Wines, Firestone Vineyard, Four Vines Winery, Halter Ranch Vineyard, Hug Cellars, J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines, Justin Vineyards & Winery, L' Aventure Winery, Norman Vineyards Inc., Redline Wines, Robert Hall Winery, Summerwood Winery, Tablas Creek Vineyard, Terry Hoage Vineyards, and Villa Creek Cellars.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Director, Rhone Rangers
General Manager, Tablas Creek Vineyard
Join us for the Paso Robles Wine Community's biggest celebration! We'll pour Esprit de Beaucastel at Friday's Reserve Event and a range of new releases at Saturday's Grand Tasting. And all weekend we'll have special wines open at the winery and will be taking tours to visit our herd of sheep, alpacas and donkeys. Sunday 11am to 1:30pm enjoy Chef Jacob Lovejoy's small plates, free with a tasting. Details & more events »
In May, we're featuring our 2011 Cotes de Tablas Blanc at a 10% discount. In 2011, our Viognier crop was cut by 80% due to spring frost, leaving a tiny, intense yield of less than one-half a ton per acre. The resulting wine is rich and tropical, with stone fruits and honey, but at the same time firmly dry, with a very long, saline & mineral finish. Details »
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Take a look at the seven-line entry of Frank Schoonmaker, America’s foremost wine expert and author in 1964, about terroir. His association, rather than the "somewhereness" the wine exhibits, is more of a taste of dirt, neither elegant nor elevated: "somewhat unpleasant, common, persistent”. My, how things have changed. More »