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Southern Rhone Style

California winery, Halter Ranch Vineyard specializes in Rhone varietals.

By Jan Walsh

Photography by Beau Gustafson

Halter Ranch Vineyard is a new California winery producing 100 percent estate grown wines—with a focus on quality and sustainability. The winery is located in the west side of Paso Robles in California’s Central Coast. Halter Ranch specializes in Southern Rhone varietals, which is one of my favorites. And winemaker Kevin Sass produces both a red and a white.

Châteauneuf-du-Pape fans will enjoy Halter Ranch Vineyard Cotes De Paso 2008 ($29). This Southern Rhone Valley style blend of Grenache, Mourvèdre, Syrah, Counoise and Cinsault. This luscious wine is dark ruby in color with notes of sage, spice, coffee, blackberry and blackcurrant. Pair this wine with grilled lamb, steak, rib roast, or beef stew. Drink now or cellar for up to five years. And those who favor a white Rhone will also enjoy Côtes de Paso Blanc 2010 ($24). This wine is made of Roussanne, Grenache Blanc, Marsanne, and Picpoul Blanc. It is very light gold in color, boasts nice minerality, and offers notes of white flowers, peach, lemon, lime and hazelnut. It also makes a lovely spring and summer sipper with or without food. Pair with pâté, seafood, poultry, and creamy cheeses.

Halter Ranch also specializes in Bordeaux style wines, which will be reviewed in next month’s column.

Published, B-Metro magazine, April 2012

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