The history of wine making in Paso Robles
The history of making wine in Paso Robles goes pretty far back! Paso was established in 1886, and is now home to more than 200 wineries. The perfect growing conditions of hot days and cool nights are ideal for producing more than 40 wine varietals! Wine grapes were first introduced to the Paso Robles soil in 1797, by the Spanish and Franciscan missionaries. Spanish conquistadors saw the land, and envisioned a future full of wine, and encouraged settlers from Mexico and other parts of the state to start growing.
In 1882 a settler from Indiana, Andrew York, started planting vineyards, and established the Ascension Winery which is now called York Mountain Winery. The perfect climate and soil were so suitable for vineyards, that he expanded the vineyards. His growing operation was so successful he built a small stone winery to keep up with demand.
In 1886, Gerd and Ilsabe Klintworth started a vineyard in the Geneseo/Linne area. They sold jugs of Zinfandel, Port, and Muscatel, and some of the first white wines from burger grapes. In 1908, the Casteel Vineyards were planted and aged in a cave cellar. Cuttings from the old vines provided the start for other vineyards, still producing in the area today.
The popularity of wines grown in the area spiked, and over time more vineyards were planted. After the prohibition, the enjoyment of Paso Robles and surrounding areas wine started getting bigger. Immigrants to the area established wineries and vineyards in the 1920’s, which are still growing and producing some of the best Zinfandels around.
In the 1970’s, Hoffman Mountain Ranch Winery was the first large-scale modern facility in the area. In 1997, JUSTIN Vineyards & Winery’s Bordeaux-style ISOSCELES was named one of the top 10 wines in the world by the Wine Spectator! In 2016, Paso Robles named Best Wine Region in the West by Sunset Magazine.
The climate, soil, and location of Paso Robles continues to be a perfect environment for the growing of grapes and wine making. We are proud to call it home, and wine tours of Paso Robles will always be a great time! Come see what it is all about!