Friday, September 11, 2009

Paso Robles, Day 2 - JUSTINcredible

After a great day in the downtown tasting rooms of Paso Robles, we headed out to the "Far Out Wineries". We drove out Naciemento Lake Road to Chimney Rock & were amazed at how much it looked like the Old West...it was as though outlaws could come riding out at any minute! Luckily, that didn't happen & we made it to our first winery safely.

Doug & I had heard such great things about Justin Vineyards & had tasted a couple of their wines that we put this at the top of our list for the day. Well, that & it looked like the farthest out, so it just made sense.

We arrived a little early, so we walked around the beautiful garden.

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Such a nice contrast when compared to all of the brown grass we'd been seeing!

Once the tasting room opened, we were welcomed by Sunny.

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Justin's tasting room is gorgeous, just like everything else about the place.

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Enough pretty stuff already -- let's get to the wine!

We started out with the Sauvignon Blanc, which was a surprisingly gentle way to start wine tasting at 10 a.m. (Feel free to judge if you feel the need.) We'd never had Justin's before, & we really enjoyed it! It wasn't the typical zinger - & I do love those, too - & it was very refreshing. Their Chard is the only white I've seen in St. Louis, but I'd love to see the Sauvignon Blanc here -- I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

We didn't go to Justin to try their whites, though, so we happily moved on to their reds. Wow, wow, wow... every single one that we tried knocked it out of the park! All of them were so smooth & luscious (which, by the way, is one of the reasons that we love Paso wines so much).

Several wines later, we were able to try what I've always wanted to try -- the Isosceles! Seriously, I've been chomping at the bit to taste this wine for several years & anytime I'd seen it on a wine list...they didn't have it (which makes me wonder if they only bought a few bottles of it just to get it on the list). It was fabulous! A wonderful blend of Merlot, Cab Franc , & Cab, it's a gorgeous wine, albeit very young. Rumor has it that it'll just get better & better until about 2025. I don't think I can wait that long!!

Remember what I said in my last post about regretting not joining Pianetta's wine club? Well, I don't have to deal with any regrets here... They were offering 6 bottles of wine, 2 of which were the Isosceles, for a really great price -- for the love of all that's holy, how could we refuse? Yes, we joined the Justin Wine Society, & it's such a great deal!

This was our first actual winery that we visited during our trip, & it was our first wine club that we joined. Now, there were other firsts as well! It was our tasting guide's first day working on her own in the tasting room, we were her very first people, & we were her first customers to join the Wine Society. I'd say it was a great start to a great day, not only for us, but for Rebecca, too!

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After we joined, Rebecca took us on a mini tour, showing us the restaurant, Deborah's Room. What a charming place! It's very intimate with only 4 tables.

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Who wouldn't want to have dinner in such a quaint, cozy space?

Churchill accompanied us.

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After we checked out the restaurant & chatted a bit more, our first visit to Justin ended. Notice I said "our first visit"...

We'll be back!

3 comments:

LucyinStLou said...

I loved the dogs at Justin! Of course the wine was great too, but it's really nice to have a head to pat so far away from home.

Becky and the Beanstock said...

Lovely photos! The wine sounds fantastic -- and any winery with a welcome pet is a must-stop, for sure!

UGA Wino said...

Enjoyed reading about your trip to Paso. My wife and I spent a week there in the spring of '09 and visited a lot of the same wineries that you did. If you ever make it back out there, you simply must have dinner at Justin. It was easily one of the top meals of my lifetime. Simply stunning!

Bill Rosich
www.ugawino.blogspot.com