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Recs for Paso Robles Wine Festival/Restaurants

  • m

Going up for the Wine Festival on the 17th. This will be my first chance to taste these wines, and my only one on the long weekend trip, so I want to make sure I hit the best ones there (primarily a red fan, but enjoy a well done white as well). Also, what about the food at the festival? Anything worth eating or a "must have"? If we wanted to do dinner in PR after the festival, what are some good places near the festival to check out?

Also, we are staying in Cambria. Stayed up there last year, and hit most of the "good restaurants", except for Robin's which was closed for a week's vacation while we were there. Anything new on the scene worth trying? Thanks!

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  1. Check out this search:
    http://www.chow.com/search?Search.x=0...
    and then maybe ask some questions. The biggest problem you may run into is that many of the best restaurants IN Paso will be hosting winery dinners after the festival.

    Artisan, Bernick's, Gaetano's, McPhee's (Templeton) are some of my favorites. Depends on what you are in the mood for. Level 4 is new, I've not been but heard good things.

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    McPhee's Ian Grill
    416 S. Main Street, Templeton, CA 93465

    Artisan
    1401 Park St., Paso Robles, CA 93446

    Gaetanos
    1646 Spring St, Paso Robles, CA

    bernick's Steakhouse
    paso robles, ca, paso robles, ca

    Level 4 Restaurant & Lounge
    1216 Park St, Paso Robles, CA 93446

    1 Reply
    1. Make your ressies now. What are you in the mood to eat? Alot of wineries have stopped pouring in the park (Windward, Tobin James, Midnight Cellar, to name a few. Do not miss L'Aventure! You will have plenty of newer wineries to choose from. I would recommend you plan to take a break in between the fest, and dinner. So, if you are staying in Cambria, you might want to get back to your hotel, rest and have dinner out there. Although the restaurants do wine maker dinners, those are usually off site, so the restaurants are still open, getting a table might be a challenge. If you really want to try a restaurant in Paso, try something downtown for lunch. Last year, I worked the wine festival and finished at 2. I was able to walk right up to Yanagi and have sushi for lunch. Basil (Thai), Lombardi's, Berryhill Bistro, Crooked Kilt, Odyssey, Gaetano's and Artisan all serve lunch. Have a great time!

      (edited when I found out L'Aventure will pouring at the park!)

      1. Brace yourselves, folks, it's gonna be a HOT one at the park! It's over 98 degrees and climbing right now, supposed to be a little cooler tomorrow. Bring your sunscreen. If you want to get an early start, or if you need a break from the heat (and a cool cocktail) , the Crooked Kilt is opening at 10 am! and will have a "limited menu", cold beers, etc. Live music starts at 6. Downtown Brew will be open, and so will Berry Hill. All have bars just in case tasting wine form 80 some wineries doesn't do it for ya'. Basil, Chico's, and Lombardi's will also be open, but good luck getting in...

        If anyone is planning on visiting wineries on Sunday, check out the crepe lady at Castoro or the lamb tacos at Opolo ($10 bucks, all you can eat)

        5 Replies
        1. re: paso_gurl_100

          Thanks for the update, paso_gurl.....it IS sizzling :(

          1. re: dockhl

            We are going out on Sunday, but I'm thinking we should head toward the coast- I've never been Harmony cellar, Rocky Creek is right over the hill where the ocean breeze comes in. Tonight we are doing heavy apps and wine at Midnight Cellars (we're members $40 bucks, they usually don't disappoint). Try not to melt, Dock....

            1. re: paso_gurl_100

              I'm not a big fan of Harmony. Cute locations bit I think the wines are meh. Don't know if I'll go out tasting this weekend or not. How was last night? I've never been to Midnight, sounds like one to go on my list ,which just keeps getting longer ;-)

              1. re: dockhl

                Midnight was awesome. They had Jeffry's catering do pairings, so we had the BEST duck confit we've ever had (sorry, Laurent) that paired with pinot noir, a lovely steak with chimichurri with cab franc (or malbec), and a seared tuna bruscetta with a white Rhone blend.

                At the park, it was SCORCHING. Probably the hottest ever, but that didn't stop us. There was plenty of ice cold bottled water provided, and that really helped. My standout fave from Saturday was a new place called Graveyard Vineyards. I loved the red blend ('04 had a bit more fruit than '05) and my husband actually liked their sauv blanc. B&E had a nice cab franc blend, and of course, an old fave Liberty School Red, which Treana Winery was pouring. For chow, I chose the crab cakes salad at the Cass Winery booth, hubby had the shrimp skewers from the Lion's club, all South Beach diet approved! I hope everyone had a good time....

                1. re: paso_gurl_100

                  Hi Paso_Gurl.
                  I happened to recently join chowhound and stumbled upon your comment about Midnight Cellars & the Duck Confit, along with the other appetizer pairings I did, as the chef/owner of Jeffrys Catering. I want to thank you very much for the nice comments. I hope your able to attend more events I cater & if you hear of anyone in need of caterers, please pass on the good comments to them. Thank You:)
                  Jeff Wiesinger
                  Jeffrys Catering
                  www.jeffryscatering.com

        2. So what did you think? Did you find anything new and wonderful that we need to try?
          You are lucky to have been staying in Cambria this weekend; it was hella hot here !

          1. Thanks to all for your advice. It was a little overwhelming for someone with little experience with Paso area wines, but I did find some things I liked quite a bit and will be stocking up on them now. The hint on L'Aventure was golden! The BEST wine I tried at the festival!