Bodegas Paso Robles wines are made with grape varietals used in Spanish and Portuguese winemaking. Our winemaker, Dorothy Schuler, strives for an artistic balance of the ancient craft of winemaking — one of the oldest professions in the world — with the new world's love of innovation.
Our red wine blends are based on Tempranillo, one of the most extensively planted grapes in both Spain and Portugal. This grape is becoming increasingly popular in California, possibly because our climate and terrain are so similar to that of the Iberian Peninsula. Blended wines — much more popular in Europe — are finally more prevalent in America. Our wines showcase why blends are increasing in popularity.
Tempranillo is a thick-skinned dark grape that produces a fruity wine full of plum and black cherry with spice and sometimes smoky leather, licorice, and almond flavors. ¡Viva Yo! — our flagship wine — is Tempranillo blended with a smidgen of Cabernet Sauvignon. Other blends contain grapes either rare to this country (Graciano and Bastardo) or used strictly to make port wines (Tinto Cão and Touriga).
Tempranillo blends are extremely versatile with food pairings, and the Spanish believe it is the most food-friendly of all wines. Nothing works better with spicy food or game birds – think duck or pheasant – and it is sublime with pork and lamb.
All grapes for our wines are hand harvested early in the morning. Red grapes are destemmed, not crushed, and sorted pre- and post-destemming. This manually intensive operation separates the good, usable berries from unripe and damaged fruit and all MOG (matter other than grapes such as hunks of vine, rocks, agricultural tape, etc.). The destemmed red fruit is cold soaked for three to four days and then started on primary fermentation, which can take anywhere from eight to fourteen days. "Punch downs" are done manually three times each day during primary fermentation. This process allows the fermenting juice to absorb color and tannin from the grape skins and seeds. When fermentation is complete, the wine is gently pressed and moved into oak barrels for secondary fermentation. White grapes are immediately sent to press, with the juice then transferred to tank for chilling before racking and fermenting in tank or moving to barrel for fermentation.
Most Bodegas Paso Robles red wines are barrel aged for two years, with the whites and rosé aged four to six months. The finished red wine is bottled in high-quality glass using hand-picked natural corks. Our rosé and whites are screw capped.