News and Accolades
Dolphin Bay Resort and Spa: A Gem on California’s Central Coast
April 13, 2017
Pismo Beach is the perfect place for an overnight stay on the epic drive along the Pacific Coast Highway. California’s central coast is filled with boutique wineries, Hearst Castle, world-class golf, wildlife sanctuaries, historic missions and antique shops. Located between San Francisco and Los Angeles in San Luis Obispo County, the Dolphin Bay Resort & Spa is an ideal home base for day touring, and a wonderful place to retreat to each night. The hotel sits on a 40-foot-high bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean and is surrounded by expansive lawns, never ending views and wonderful surf spots. READ MORE
Getting to Know California's Best Unsung Wine Regions
April 11, 2017
Although it only takes about a half hour to drive from end to end, the 15-mile span of the Arroyo Grande and Edna Valleys reveals all that should be championed and much of what remains challenging for California’s lesser-known wine regions.
The valleys, just miles from the chilly Pacific Ocean in southern San Luis Obispo County, are dramatically pockmarked with steep volcanic peaks of jaw-dropping beauty. They’re full of wildly varying soils, and are home to pioneering and iconoclastic vintners. READ MORE
San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition Winner
The San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition (SFCWC) is the largest wine contest of solely American wines in the world.
Sixty experts from the media, education, trade, and hospitality industries come together each year to judge the best wine this country has to offer.
Submissions streamed in from across the country. Everything from small boutique wineries to large-scale suppliers are represented in this year's selection.
The Top Ten Tasting Wines of 2016
December 26, 2016
This past year was a fascinating one for a wine industry that has never been one to rest on its past successes. Great chefs have flocked to San Diego and brought with them menu formats that include great wines.
The urban winery format has multiplied in our large communities where one brand is served, made from grapes brought in from the best vineyards in the state. The wines of Baja Mexico are finally showing what they are made of (I have one in my Top 10).
The list also includes two from Italy, one from Washington and six from California. An amazing six blends make up the majority of flavors, with two Pinot Noirs, one Chardonnay and one Sangiovese.
Frank Mangio is a renowned wine connoisseur certified by Wine Spectator. He is one of the leading wine commentators on the web. View his columns at tasteofwinetv.com and reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Facebook.
The Wine and Food of San Luis Obispo
December 11, 2016
A winery to discover is Tolosa , a large, sweeping vista vineyard just south of San Luis Obispo’s airport in the Edna Valley. Tolosa is named after the Franciscan Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa, that grew wine grapes in the 18th century, and still stands today. Those Pacific coastal winds make this the coldest appellation in California and reminiscent of Burgundy in France. It is a prime environment for Pinot Noir. The Tolosa Pinot to search for is “1772,”($60.) the year the mission was built.
This 2014 release is a blend of 4 different blocks, aged 11 months in French Oak barrels. It has a rich, black cherry mouthfeel, with refined tannins.
Frank Mangio is a renowned wine connoisseur certified by Wine Spectator. He is one of the leading wine commentators on the web. VIEW HIS COLUMNS
Central Coast Wineries
December 5, 2016
California wines are abundant and world renown. Most people think of Napa as the “wine country” of this great state. Or maybe folks are more familiar with Paso Robles, because of the quirky film Sideways (2004). But there are a few areas of the state that have old vines, old world charm and churn out exceptional wines. One of these areas is on the Central Coast, and a stones through away from our premiere grand prize sponsor’s (Dolphin Bay Resort & Spa) coastal establishment. We are talking about San Luis Obispo. This area has lots of warm sunshine, rich growing soil, and coastal fog, which allow for a long growing season, making the wineries in this area some of the most productive in the state.
Here are a couple notable wineries that you will have to try.
Tolosa Winery – Also in the Edna Valley area. Rich and wonderful Pinot Noirs. They put out an exclusive Pinot Noir called Primera, which is made and sold in small batches. Very rare indeed! For Tolosa tasting, or tours, it’s best to contact them and make a reservation.
Taste of Wine: The natural beauty of California is along the Central Coast
December 5, 2016
I’ve tasted wines of the Central Coast for some time without much knowledge of the place where they came from and why the Pinot Noirs and Chardonnays were so good from this part of California.
This part seemed an obscure treasure and I hadn’t yet put all the pieces together with any clarity. It turns out that San Luis Obispo County is systemically the heart of the Central Coast, situated between Monterey and Santa Barbara Counties.
Tolosa’s Renaissance Elevates Edna Valley Pinot Noir to Rival World’s Finest
Tolosa, a boutique winery in Edna Valley, unveiled its multi-million dollar renovation and celebrated the elevation of its brand during its “Discover Tolosa” weekend, which drew more than 400 guests to its estate Nov. 4-6, 2016. The festivities were highlighted by a ribbon-cutting ceremony, the release of Tolosa’s new, single vineyard wines and the unveiling of its new production facilities and hospitality spaces. With its overhaul and latest offerings, Tolosa, once again, positions itself as a pioneer in the Central Coast wine community and moves forward with a renewed commitment to spare no effort in handcrafting the finest Pinot Noir and Chardonnay possible.
Explore SLO Wine Country, Central California’s Hidden Gem
Since San Luis Obispo was established in 1772, with the founding of Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa, winemaking has been part of the fabric of life in this coastal paradise. Most vineyards are within five miles from the ocean, channeling the marine influence into the grapes, from the soils to the climate, a Goldilocks moment where the clusters enjoy a long growing season. Not subjected to wild temperature swings, the grapes slowly develop, reaching a balance between acidity and concentrated aromas and flavors. This cradle gives rise to aromatic white wines and distinctive reds. Just under 5000 acres of vines populate the region, yet bring life to the economy, being the top crop, responsible for lots of jobs and visitors to SLO Wine Country.
With just under 30 wineries interpreting their plots of paradise, the region is getting noticed. Cool climate varietals, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, reign here, but many diverse microclimates nourish almost two dozen wine varietals,