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Central Coast Wines: Part 2

Hello, and welcome to Part 2 of our tasting journey into Central Coast Wines.

Now it's time for the big boys, the Reds.


I'm sure you will all like the wines I have selected. They are some popular wines in their respective categories and price points.

Let's start with the Wild Horse Merlot.

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Being from the Central Coast, this is not your typical, dainty Merlot. This wine has character on the nose, bursting with plums, blackberries and a touch of spice. On the palate, you will experience mouth filling fruits; blackberry, plum, cherry and a bit of clove. The tannins are big, round, and soft. This is a big, bold wine for a merlot, and its flavors delight your palate by sticking around for a long time. Pair this wine with grilled lamb, roasted pork loin or smoked brisket. It will accompany all of them nicely.

Price range: $13-$18

Our second red is a Paso Robles all star: a big, jammy Zinfandel from Crooked Path.

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On the nose this wine smells like a freshly opened jar of blackberry jam. Notes of blackberry, black cherry, dark plums and a hint of vanilla fill your nostrils. The palate is smooth, big and flavorful. Flavors of cherry, blackberry, vanilla with a hint of black pepper on the finish delight your tastebuds. It has a long finish and leaves you smiling, anticipating the next sip. This wine begs to be paired with another Central Coast all star: slow smoked Santa Maria style Tri Tip, a big, fluffy baked potato with butter and chives, seasoned with some sea salt and cracked black pepper, and grilled corn on the cob rolled in butter and lightly salted.

Bon appétit!

Price range: $12-18

And lastly we come to one of my "Diamond in the Rough" wines. This is a wine which, once you've tasted it, you'll wonder why you've never heard of the winery before now. I'm talking about another great Paso Robles wine, the Robert Hall Cabernet.

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From the time you uncork this wine, until the last drop, you will be smiling. The nose exudes aromas of deep, rich cherry tobacco, currants and clove spice. It has an almost port-like quality to it. On the palate, flavors of dark cherries, stewed plums, vanilla and baking spices wash your tastebuds in a bold flavorful fruit bath. The long finish of dark fruit, cocoa powder and spice will leave you grinning from ear to ear because you just found your new "go to" barbecue Cabernet. Like the Crooked Path Zin, the Robert Hall Cab also begs to be paired with a slow smoked Santa Maria style Tri Tip, with all the fixins.

Price range: $14-$18 (You read that right! $14-$18, and this WILL BE your "go to" barbecue Cabernet this summer. I promise.)

Well, I hope you have enjoyed this installment of wines from the Central Coast of California.

Next week I will have some delicious treats for you from the acclaimed Sonoma Coast. Stay tuned, and keep your wine glasses ready!

Cheers everyone!
Enjoy your weekend.