Wine & Travel

Snooth User: oceank8

Pismo Beach

Posted by oceank8, Jan 6, 2009.

Tomorrow morning I am off for my annual camping trip to Pismo Beach. The plan is to save money by camping on the beach, so I can spend more on wine :) I will be hitting Paso Robles area on Thursday and Santa Rita Hills (and surrounding) on Friday; with Saturday reserved for off roading in the dunes. I don't know of anyone around this area on the board, but if anyone is and wants to meet up, let me know. I will also take pics and post about the trip later.


Reply by Philip James, Jan 7, 2009.

Ocean - soungs great, looking forward to seeing the report. Have fun - its 33 degress and windy and rainy here at the moment, so only a tiny bit jealous...

Reply by oceank8, Jan 15, 2009.

Well, it was a beautiful time in Pismo Beach with excellent weather (mid 70's during the day and low 40's at night). Such a rough trip!

We went to 20 wineries between Buelton and Paso Robles. The first place we hit, in Paso, was one of my all time favorites, Castoro Cellars. I love them because they have a ton of wines (about 20), all of them good, and very well priced. I left there with my first case of wine.

Then we headed over to Four VInes. I love their wines, really some great stuff. Only downside is their heads are sometimes a bit big for their shoulders and occasionally we aren't treated really well. We also had our picnic lunch there.

Both of these wineries are on the West 46 (which is usually my preferred destination) so we decided to mix it up and head over to the East side. While there we hit Tobin James which is another favorite of mine for good, affordable wine with nice people.

We went to many more places that day but not much else worth mentioning. The next day we started in Santa Rita Hills at Mosby. They are a small place with all Italian varietals. They make nice wines that you can't find many other places in the area.

We also went to Huber Cellars while in Santa Rita Hills. Their tasting room is in their house and by appointment only. Our familiarity with this wine comes from a very emotional background and we were very happy to go to their tasting room for the first time. After a few tears, we tasted some AMAZING wines! They use the Dornfelder grape to make wine, which is something not many people do. It has such beautiful color to it. They also use the grape to make a preserve that was pretty good as well. Here we all are with the owners:

Overall, it was a great trip with wonderful friends, awesome food, great wine, and some off roading to boot! I came home with 6 cases of wine and my new fridge is starting to not look quite so bare.

Reply by Philip James, Jan 20, 2009.

Ocean - you visited 20 wineries? Over how many days?

anyway, great pics - thanks for sharing.

Reply by oceank8, Jan 20, 2009.

Yes, 20 wineries, in 3 days.

Reply by Rodolphe Boulanger, Jan 21, 2009.

How many wines do you think that was? 5 to 10 per winery so ~150 overall?

You are almost in shape to hit some of the large trade tastings!

Reply by Gregory Dal Piaz, Jan 21, 2009.

Awesome pics and write up. Trying a Four Vines Syrah in todays blind PTP.

We'll let you know how it goes and you can follow me on twitter as I taste them if you like. Beginning after 6 pm.

Reply by oceank8, Jan 21, 2009.

Yeah, probably close to 10 at each winery, bring on the trade shows!

I am interested to see how the four vines syrah does. My favorite of theirs is the freakshow series: Heretic, Peasant, Anarchy, and Loco.

Reply by qutins, Jan 22, 2009.

Wow, that's a lot of wineries in 3 days!! I saw Pismo beach and had to come say hi :) I live in Lompoc. The pics all look great!

Reply by MReff, Feb 6, 2009.

wow what a line up. Last time I was in Pismo Beach was in 2004 and I stayed at the Spyglass inn, a must for all vacationers. Post some notes on that vino you tried.



Reply by HS Law, Jun 10, 2009.

The sunset at Pismo Beach looks beautiful. Thanks for sharing the pictures!

Reply by dmcker, Jun 10, 2009.

Ocean, ever visit Maison Deutz when you're in that vicinity? Haven't had any of their sparkling for a long time, and am wondering how they're doing these days.

Reply by oceank8, Jun 11, 2009.

@HS Law, glad you like the pics. We have such a great time!
@dmcker, no, I haven't ever been there, didn't even realize they were in the area. I haven't ever seen them on any maps, I wonder if they actually have a tasting room?

Reply by dmcker, Jun 11, 2009.

My memory is that they used to have a showroom and vineyards that you could see from 101 which I'd visit at the end of the '80s whenever I had business with some ranches near Cayucos and Cambria, or north of Santa Maria. Stopovers there (and at Jocko's in Nipomo for some of the best steaks you'll find anywhere) became a kind of ritual, as I'd always share bottles on visits with my friends in Santa Barbara and family down in Ojai and Ventura. I thought at the time that Deutz was making some of the best transplanted French sparkling wine in California, certainly better than Domaine Chandon. That was in the days before Santa Barbara County was widely recognized for the quality of its pinot noir grapes.

After a hiatus of several years I kept looking for the winery as I drove through, earlier this decade. I didn't see them from the road. but soon got distracted on those busy trips, forgot about the place, and never bothered to search for them online or elsewhere. The other day I ran across a reference to them and did a quick and dirty search. This is where they apparently are:
but I don't see a lot of reference to them in the press.

Was wondering how their wine was these days. If they're still making wine like they used to, they're well worth a visit.

Reply by dmcker, Jun 11, 2009.

Hmmm, searching further it appears the '90s were a turbulent period for Maison Deutz:
yet that their wines are still valued by collectors:
unless those are just from the parent operation in Champagne.

And here are some better directions to the place:

Reply by maui55, Jun 19, 2009.

To dmcker,

Maison Deutz is now Laetitia Winery. Check out

Reply by dmcker, Jun 19, 2009.

Yeah, maui, thanks. I figured that out when I was doing that websearch above. Bummer. The California Maison Deutz bubbly was very good, back in the day.

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