As in Santa Barbara County, the 2007 vintage in Paso Robles was influenced heavily by its cold, dry winter. January temperatures plummeted to close to 0 degrees Fahrenheit and rainfall levels were just 40% of average. Both of these delayed flowering, reduced vigor, and resulted in tiny berry sizes and lighter cluster weights. This was followed by a long, moderate, even growing season with little in the way significant weather events. Small heat spikes in August were largely inconsequential and growers harvested tiny, concentrated grapes.

The favored style in Paso Robles at that time was one of opulence and power, and the 2007s were incredibly ripe, sexy wines on release. However, many wines lacked the required tannins, mid-palate depth, and balance for any extended aging. Today, those wines are tired and best drunk up. Nevertheless, there are a bevy of brilliant wines from this vintage, with a handful of true superstars. In fact, I’d wager some of the greatest wines ever made in Paso Robles come from this vintage. The top wines are concentrated,  layered and certainly powerful wines that have aged gracefully.  At this point, none of the wines need any additional cellaring and to a wine, all are showing signs of maturity. nevertheless, the top wines will drink nicely for another decade.

In short, this was a great vintage for Paso Robles and it’s time to start opening bottles and evaluating what’s in your cellar.

Happy drinking,

Jeb Dunnuck