Here is a rundown of the major wine-tasing events in Paso Robles in 2023, including the annual Paso Wine Fest in May. Also included is a beer fest for craft beer lovers and a music festival
• Rhone Rangers Experience, Feb. 19
This is a full day of wine-related activities featuring America’s leading producers of Rhone varietals as we explore these great grapes and wines. It is highlighted by the Grand Tasting and Silent Auction (1:30-4:30 p.m.)
For a wine to qualify as a “Rhone Rangers” wine, the winery must be a member of the organization and 75% of the wine’s content must include one or more of the twenty-two traditional Rhone grape varieties as approved by the French government for the wines of the Cotes du Rhone (including Petite Sirah/Durif).
Link: Rhone Rangers
• Paso Robles Blendfest On The Coast, Feb 23-26
Paso Robles BlendFest on the Coast celebrates rule-breaking, traditional, and unconventional wine blends throughout the weekend with several events in in Cambria and San Simeon.
Winemaker Dinners: Dine with Paso’s best winemakers and sip blended wines paired with unique menus that highlight the best of Central Coast cuisine. Select from a variety of special and exclusive wine dinners in Cambria and San Simeon.
Coastal Excursions: Experience the awe-inspiring and unique offerings of the Highway One Discovery Route with BlendFest Coastal Excursions. A blend of Paso’s best wines and some of Cambria and San Simeon’s most exciting adventures!
Blending Seminar by the Coast: Become a winemaker for a day! Try your hand at making the perfect blend with three of Paso’s finest winemakers as your guides. Guests will learn the philosophy of blending and then compete for the best blend. Lunch follows with the winemakers and their finished wines.
Sunset Grand Tasting: 40+ renowned Paso Robles wineries will come together each showcasing distinct Paso blends. Guests will enjoy spectacular wines, only surpassed by stunning Pacific ocean views, on the Sundance Lawn of Oceanpoint Ranch in Cambria, along the Highway 1 Discovery Route.
• Spring Release Weekend, March 18-20
Spring Release Weekend is a three-day event that celebrates new wines and the spring season. Stemming from the Paso Robles wine fest once known as Zinfandel Weekend, the annual festival kicks off on the third Friday of each March. Friday evening sees about 40 wineries pouring samples at an open-air event in Paso’s Downtown City Park. On Saturday and Sunday, area wineries host barbecues, vineyard tours, winemaker dinners, panel discussions and other activities.
More than 100 producers are at the event, which also includes live music and local food.
May 19-22 – Paso Wine Fest
The signature event of Paso Robles, the annual Paso Wine Fest takes place in town (so no driving!) and features more than 100 area producers a the four-day festival.
There are seminars, winemaker dinners, barrel tastings and special events hosted by area wineries. You’ll also enjoy live music, local food and exhibits by fine artists, jewelry makers, leather craftspeople and other artisan vendors.
Traditionally held at a downtown park, it has moved this year to the Paso Robles Event Center, home of the midstate fair. Food is from Rib Line, LouLou Cheese Girl, Shekamoo Grill, Della’s Wood-Fired Pizza and other regional restaurants.
Link: Paso Wine Fest
Firestone Walker Beer Festival – June 4
There’s more than wine in Paso Robles, as evidenced by the Firestone Walker Beer Festival. Since 2012, the Firestone Walker Invitation Beer Fest (FWIBF) has been held every year after the Memorial Day Weekend
Some 2,500 people sample 50+ craft beers from brewers from around the nation and world, celebrating craft beer at the Paso Robles Event Center. The event sells out every year so getting tickets to this year may be difficult.
Distillery Trail Weekend, Aug. 11-13
In addition to wine and craft beer, Paso Robles has several craft distilleries and they get days in the spotlight with the Distillery Trial Weekend, the second weekend of August. The Central Coast area has more than a dozen distilleries with more planned to open soon, from Paso Robles oto San Luis Obispo to Paso Robles.
During the event, each of the 14 members of the Distillery Trail showcase their craft spirits with top shelf happenings such as distillery tours, mixology demonstrations, live music, and pairings with local eats
Whale Rock Music & Arts Festival, Sept. 16-17
Castoro Cellars launched Beaverstock in 2013 to commemorate its 30th anniversary. Four years later (after facing Woodstock-related copyright concerns), the team reintroduced the Whale Rock Music & Arts Festival. Today’s family-friendly jam-fest takes its name from the event’s Whale Rock Vineyard home. The mid-September gathering promises two days of peace, music, art and yoga in the vines.
Two days of back-to-back musical performances are on two stages with food trucks dish up picnic-style food to pair with Castoro wines, craft beers and hard ciders.
Paso Robles Harvest Wine Month – October
Every year during October to celebrate the new harvest, wineries host individual events throughout the month. Look for specialty tours, winemaker dinners, grape stomps, music events, and more. October traditionally has exceptional weather, when days are warm and nights are cool, a staple for Paso Robles Wine Country and a perfect time to take in the incredible colors, sights, and aromas of harvest.
Harvest Wine Month (HWM) is a themed, month-long celebration that does not feature a single marquee event, but rather individual experiences at the area wineries.
Link: Harvest Wine Month
Garagiste Festival, Nov. 10-13
Named the #1 Wine Festival in America by USA Today, the Garagiste Festival is the only gathering of these micro-wineries in the world. It features more than 50 of the best small-lot winemakers in the world. This is a truly unique wine experience – comfortable and casual, with the winemakers themselves pouring their favorite wines.
Link: Garagiste Wine Festival