Central California is not where most people think the best wines in California hail from but Rabbit Ridge in Paso Robles is quite smooth and a good value. Produced from grapes grown in three different vineyards, the Paso Robles Allure de Robles comes from three vineyards on the property; Cristalla Ranch, grown from a Syrah clone grafted for Rabbit Ridge, Estrella Ranch and Tablas Creek Ranch also clone grafted vineyards. The fruit ripens at different times from these three vineyards as the elevations vary and the soil is a bit different giving it a complex and fruity taste.
Medium bodied and barrel aged with notes of raspberries, blackberries, black currents and pepper Allure de Robles makes for a wonderful brunch accompaniment with ham and breakfast foods, as I sergved it. It seems the limestone in the soil impart the earthy characteristics of this Rhone-style wine. Let this one breathe a bit before enjoying, the air enhances the fruity flavors making them come alive. Also wonderful after dinner for sipping with a piece of dark chocolate or a little cheese, it goes wonderfully with brie.
Allure de Robles won the Bronze Metal in the San Francisco Wine Competition January 2008 for its 2005 vintage. It’s 2004 vintage won a variety of awards ranging from Silver to Bronze. I picked up a few bottles at Trader Joe’s and I am considering grabbing a case before it’s all gone. 2008 was a very good year for Allure de Robles, I wouldn’t be surprised to see it winning a few awards of its own.