Best local red Rhone-style wines for the holidays
Of all the wines we are recommending in this series, Rhone-style varieties are perhaps the best suited to holiday meals. They are often smoother and more well-balanced in character, which makes them well-suited to a big holiday meal or Christmas turkey dinner with all the fixings. Paso Robles winemakers have recently been producing some of the best Rhone-style wines outside of France. So with that bias, here are a few good recommendations of Paso Robles Rhone-style wines.
Top Paso Robles red Rhone-style wines
Brecon 2016 Forty-Two – $64
A delicious fruit-forward Rhone-style blend of syrah, mourvèdre and petit sarah. Most of the grapes were grown in the esteemed Adelaida District AVA. It earned 92 points from Wine Enthusiast and 91 points from Robert Parker.
Bushong 2015 Vineyard 1010 Grenache – $43
Wow! This grenache packs everything I love in a Rhone-Style wine. It offers flavors bold berries and spice with a touch of leather and pepper. This powerful wine will
Bushong 2016 Power Corruption & Lies – $43
A deep, rich blend of syrah, petite sirah, and grenache. A nose of black cherry with cocoa and holiday spices. It’s full-bodied with smooth tannins This wine lends itself to be the sophisticated red wine at the holiday table.
Cass 2015 Rockin’ One Red – $49
A harmonious blend of grenache, mourvèdre, syrah and petite sirah. It displays nuances of stewed boysenberries, dried raspberry, pipe tobacco, clove and orange zest. This wine earned 91 points from Vinous and a Gold Medal at the Central Coast Wine Competition.
Cypher 2013 Drop Dead Legs Grenache – $50
This dark ruby colored grenache opens with a pleasant strawberry bouquet with hints of blueberry and oak. On the palate, this wine is full-bodied, juicy and lush. Flavors include raspberry and strawberry. The finish is dry with moderate tannins. It will pair well with prime rib.
Cypher 2014 GSM – $55
This delicious Rhone-style wine is a perfect blend of grenache, syrah, and mourvèdre. It offers an elegant flavor with dark ripe fruit and hints of anise spice and leather. It will pair very well with turkey and all the fixings.
Eberle 2016 Cotes-Du-Robles – $30
This medium-bodied wine captures aromas of dried cherries, cranberries, and forest floor, while the palate is filled with ripe strawberry and rhubarb compote wrapped up in rustic tannins. Gary Eberle calls this the perfect bistro wine as it pairs so well with home-style French cooking or slow-cooked foods and stews. Perfect pairings include lamb meatballs simmered in a spiced tomato sauce, charcuterie, or deliciously rich duck cassoulet.
Opolo 2016 Grande Rouge – $22
A playful blend of Counoise, Syrah and Grenache, the Grand Rouge has a burst of bountiful berries, red raspberry, bing cherry and a touch of sandalwood. Leading into a lively acidity framed by dried cranberry, this crowd-pleaser will leave your taste buds with smooth elderberry and limestone minerality.
Pomar Junction 2013 Syrah – $40
This 100-percent syrah is an exciting representation of Rhone wines grown in Paso Robles. Spice, fruit, and smokiness make this wine varietally characteristic and noteworthy. This wine’s intense flavors and supple tannins pair naturally with rich meats such as rosemary garlic rack of lamb, roasted duck with grilled vegetables or a hearty beef stew.
Riverstar Vineyard 2016 Syrah – $32
This wine starts off with a hint of tobacco then subtly turns to full-bodied dark berry flavors. Interestingly, tobacco remains in the nose with each sip. The Riverstar 2016 Syrah is an intriguing wine that stands on its own while enjoying a glass in front of a winter fire or with grilled vegetables or thick stew and crusty bread.
Robert Hall 2016 Cavern Select Syrah – $45
This vintage has aromas of blackberry preserves, fresh pastry, and sweet tobacco. It offers flavors of camphor, cardamom, and cured meats on the mid-palate. It has a balanced acidity with tannins on the finish.
Vina Robles 2015 Terra Bella Syrah – $54
The grapes for this wine were hand-picked from the Terra Bella Vineyard in the Adelaida District AVA. The deep garnet syrah offers aromas of black berries and dried fig. The full-bodied wine delivers dark red berry fruits with a smooth and structured finish.
Paso Robles wine recommendations
• Best local sparkling wines for the holidays
• Best local rosé wines for the holidays
• Best local white wines for the holidays
• Best local Spanish-style wines for the holidays
• Best local pinot noir wines for the holidays
• Best local zinfandel and Italian-style wines for the holidays
• Best local cabernet sauvignon and Bordeaux-style wines for the holidays
• Best local Rhone-style red wines for the holidays
• Best local dessert wines for the holidays
Publisher’s note: For the fifth year in a row we thought it would be a great idea to recommend local wines for upcoming holiday parties and dinners. Once again, we received an amazing amount of participation from our local wineries. Over the last few weeks, we received more than 100 entries. After tasting and tasting and tasting, there were many solid, well-made wines to recommend. We have created several lists of top local wines into categories. The recommended wines above are in alphabetical order.