These are the six counties:
Some of the more famous areas within the counties are: Ventura County Wine Trail, Santa Ynez Valley, Edna Valley, and the Monterey and Santa Clara Valleys. One place plan to visit is Laetitia Vineyard and Winery in Arroyo Grande. They were originally known for their Methode Champenoise sparkling wines. They have added chardonnay and pinot noir to their stable, matching many of the area’s best wineries. Their first vineyards were planted in 1982, when French viticulturists found ideal growing conditions, similar in character to their homeland in Epernay, France (where I visited last April).
What else does the region offer? Along Highway 101 are the twin wine regions of Arroyo Grande and the Edna Valley, on the southern edge of San Luis Obispo. They are some of California’s most bucolic viticultural areas, with little more than wineries, homes and unspoiled country. Some driveways have cattle guards, and row crops such as bell peppers and cabbage rival vines in acreage. The older producers are mostly located east of the highway on flat terrain. Many wines come from vineyards in the oak-covered western hills, rugged country accessible by scenic, twisting roads occupied by as many deer, it seems, as cars.
Most importantly, Central Coast wineries fared quite well in recent California State Fair competition:
With a gold award and a score of 94, Robert Hall Winery 2014 orange muscat, Margaret’s Vineyard, won both Best of South-Central Coast White and Best Muscat.
Best Syrah was awarded to Cinquain Cellars with a double gold award and a score of 98 for their 2011 syrah. The winery also won Best of South-Central Coast Red with a gold award and a score of 94 for its 2011 malbec, Nagengast Estate Vineyard.
Robert Hall Winery won Best Viognier and a double gold with a score of 98 for its 2014 viognier.
Best Rhone Red Varietal Blend was awarded to Hearst Ranch Winery for its 2012 Three Sisters Cuvée with a gold award and a score of 94.
Further proof of the region’s place in the wine world, Wine Enthusiast has name two SLO County restaurants best for wine lovers. Ember in Arroyo Grande, and Foremost Wine Company in San Luis Obispo were included in their 100 Best Wine Restaurants of 2015. If you want to hang out with the area’s winemakers, go to Villa Creek in Paso Robles. We plan to try both Ember and Foremost. Ember might be the best place we have dined in many years. It is located in nearby Arroyo Grande. Not only is the food excellent and creative, their staff is outstanding!!!