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Leading the family’s portfolio time line is the Treana Winery, which the family established in 1996. “Treana” symbolizes a trinity of natural elements—sun, soil, and ocean—all elements of Paso Robles, where these wines are sourced and made. Treana White 2007 ($25) is a white Rhone blend of Marsanne and Viognier with notes of jasmine, pineapple, honey and pear. Treana Red 2006 ($50)—my favorite of the Hope Family portfolio—is a proprietary blend of 70 percent Cabernet Sauvignon and 30 percent Syrah. This vibrant and well-balanced wine is ruby in color, offers aromas and flavors of dark cherry and spice.

The Hope family helped build Liberty School’s reputation for fruit driven, barrel aged wines of true varietal at a good value, by first sourcing the fruit for Caymus’ Chuck Wagner. Later the family took over the label, adding a Central Coast Chardonnay and Syrah to the Liberty School portfolio. Liberty School Cabernet Sauvignon 2007 ($12) is well structured with notes of aromas of ripe red fruit, followed by similar vibrant and rich dark cherry flavors. Liberty School Syrah 2007 ($12) is a well-integrated wine with pleasant minerality and notes of plum, spice and cola and exotic spice. Liberty School Chardonnay 2007 ($12) offers bright aromas and flavors of apple, pineapple, pear, honey and a subtle hint of toasted oak. And Wine DJ, the Liberty School iPhone application builds playlists of “music to match your spirits” based on mood, setting and the type of Liberty School wine being consumed.

Grapes from various growing regions synthesize in the cellar to make Candor varietal wines at an affordable price point. Candor Merlot Lot One ($18) is sourced from vineyards in Paso Robles and Santa Barbara and has notes of black cherry, plum, spice and smoke. Candor Zinfandel Lot One ($18) is sourced from Paso Robles and Lodi, both old and new vines and displays blackberry jam, black pepper, and clove aromas and flavors.  

In 2000 Austin Hope opened Austin Hope Winery to produce high end, hand crafted wines inspired by the wines of France’s northern Rhone Valley. “When I first tasted Cote Rotie, I fell in love,” Hope says. He traveled to France to study these Rhone vineyards and style of winemaking. Today Austin Hope Winery's flagship wine is the Austin Hope Syrah that is similar to these Northern Rhone wines. Austin Hope Syrah 2005 ($42) presents aromas and flavors of blueberry, cassis, smoked meat and spice. The wine is elegant yet structured with a nice acidity and rich mouth feel. Cheers to 2010!


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