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Paso Robles Wineries Make a Big Impression


Four Paso Robles Wineries Named 101 Best Wineries In America

Paso Robles Wineries 101 BestThe Daily Meal—an online publication devoted to the best food and drink experiences of every level and ranked one of the fastest-growing content sites of all time—recently set out to determine the 101 best wineries in the United States. Four Paso Robles wineries made the list, which is made up entirely of wineries submitted by an elite-yet-varied panel of top sommeliers, chefs, and wine writers.

Speaking of one of the chosen wineries, Pamela C. Pajuelo, (CSW, WSET) said: “Some of my favorite zinfandels are from Peachy Canyon Winery, but I recently tried the 2011 syrah. You’ll get some gamey notes, a hint of white pepper, and beautiful cherry and violet on the palate. The smooth tannins and body make it a great barbecue wine.”

While the Paso Robles wine region often takes a backseat to the more widely known Napa Valley, that may be coming to a close. Peachy Canyon Winery, Tablas Creek Vineyard, and Saxum Vineyards all placed in the top 50 (Caparone Winery of Paso Robles also made the list at #69), while a number of more traditionally prominent California wineries did not make the list at all. Jess Novak of The Daily Meal explained “… we invited our panelists to assess the wineries’ quality-to-price ratio. While we did not weight this last factor as heavily as we did the other two aspects, we felt that value should be considered in our ranking strategy. This accounts in part for the absence from our list of some of the most famous Napa Valley trophy wines, priced at many hundreds of dollars — though it is also worth noting that our panel didn’t vote for some of these at all.”

Unlike typical wine competitions, the wineries were not able to submit themselves for consideration. The 101 listed wineries were chosen purely on the quality of the wines produced by the winery. Selections were based on individual bottle quality, narrowed by the consistency of the winery’s complete offering, and narrowed further by the ratio of quality to price. Nominations were made by a distinguished panel chosen for their excellence in the industry, consisting of the following sommeliers, restaurateurs, chefs, and wine writers:

  • Matthew Allen: Sommelier, Director of Wine and Spirits at Seafood R’evolution restaurant in New Orleans
  • Colman Andrews: Editorial Director, The Daily Meal
  • Maxine Borcherding: Chef, Sommelier, French Wine Scholar, Spanish Wine Educator, Lead Chef Instructor at Oregon Culinary Institute
  • Daniel Boulud: Chef and restaurant owner of DANIEL, a Michelin starred Relais & Châteaux member
  • Peter Eastlake: Owner of Vintage Berkeley wine shop, past national wine buyer for Cost Plus World Market and Wine Director for Best Cellars, New York
  • Daniel Grajewski: Sommelier, Director of Beverage for Mina Restaurant Group
  • Nate Hoffa: Sommelier, Beverage Director at Trentina restaurant
  • Daniel Johnnes: Sommelier, wine importer, James Beard Outstanding Wine Professional of the Year 2006, Wine Director for Dinex Group
  • Rachael Lowe: Sommelier, Beverage Director at Spiaggia
  • Julian Mayor: Sommelier, Wine Director of Four Seasons hotel and Bourbon Steak, Washington D.C.
  • Catherine Morel: Head Sommelier at Bourbon Steak Los Angeles
  • Roger Morris: Wine and Food Writer for Wine Enthusiast, Beverage Media, Sommelier Journal, Drinks Business (UK), Robb Report, Intermezzo and Sommelier News
  • Pamela C. Pajuelo: WSET Level II, CSW, wine educator, blogger, and writer for The Latin Kitchen
  • Elissa Rae: General Manager of Trade restaurant, Boston MA
  • Gabe Sasso: Wine and Spirits columnist for The Daily Meal, founder of Drink Dry Creek, and freelance wine writer
  • Courtney Schiessl: Sommelier, WSET, Wine Consultant, freelance wine writer for The Daily Meal
  • Elizabeth Schneider: Sommelier, WSET, wine educator, wine blogger
  • Raj Vaidya: Head Sommelier at Michelin starred DANIEL restaurant
  • Norman Van Aken: Chef, multiple James Beard Award Recipient, cooking school founder, author, radio host, restaurateur
  • Alice Waters: Chef, author, proprietor of Chez Panisse, Vice President of Slow Food International
  • Robbie Wilson: Chef and Partner of Mattei’s Tavern, past Executive Chef at Matsuhisa in Aspen

Recognition from such a celebrated group is an undeniable achievement that can only further the growing reputation for world class wines in the Paso Robles wine region.

The full list of wineries honored by The Daily Meal is available online: http://www.thedailymeal.com/america-s-101-best-wineries-slideshow

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