By Donna Polizzi
Evoking a magical Tuscany vacation, award-winning winery remains true to its roots under Hall family’s deliberate stewardship.
Discovering Robert Hall Winery in Paso Robles was a fascinating experience. When I first saw the winery and vineyard, it made me feel as if I were far away from home on vacation in Tuscany.
Robert Hall and his family went on a trip to southern France in the 1970s and their passion for wine began.
This world-class winery, at 3443 Mill Road, boasts a state-of-the-art hospitality and wine-tasting room on 150 acres of beautiful rolling terrain, where 50 percent of the acres are planted with cabernet grapes, along with 19 other varietals. All of the reds have won gold medals.
I could have stayed all day and basked in the elegance of this intimate place. The view is magnificent from the garden terrace. Floral gardens, fountains and magnificent water-scaped reflecting pools are the perfect places to enjoy excellent wine in a peaceful setting.
The tasting room is a one-of-a-kind, warm and friendly place. There are 90-degree views of the wine country through windows that are 13 feet tall.
The ornate, arched wrought-iron doorways and massive one-ton chandelier were handmade in the tasting room before the vineyard manager, Richard Raper, completed construction on the premises. The tasting room’s bar is an inviting place, made of cherry and mahogany wood.
Don Brady has been the winemaker for 14 years. According to results of the 2015 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, he has the knack for consistently creating award winners. The 2014 Rosé de Robles was a Sweepstakes Winner and the best rosé in the competition.
My favorite was the 2013 Cuvée de Robles, which won a double gold award as a result of a unanimous vote by a five-member judging panel. The 2014 Sauvignon Blanc took the gold, and it’s no wonder as the pear dry finish is something to savor.
I could go on and on. An impressive 12 wines received medals at the San Francisco Chronicle wine competition, the world’s largest competition of American wines.
Hall died Oct. 4, 2014, at age 85, and his widow, Margaret Burrell Hall, owns the winery today.
I had the pleasure of meeting and talking with Burrell Hall, and her passion still remains. Her eyes lit up when she told me about the day she and her husband purchased the land and how there was nothing there but dirt. The Halls were hands-on building their dream, designing the production facilities and winery.
Twenty-six feet below ground are 19,000 square feet of beautiful caves that look like distressed granite. This cool sanctuary is where 4,000 premium French oak barrels have matured Robert Hall wines to award-winning status. I cannot adequately describe the uniqueness and stillness of these caves.
After the tour, Burrell Hall had to twist my arm to try the Orange Muscat from her vineyard. It was a sweet way to end my afternoon and, of course, I had to take a bottle home. So much about Robert Hall Winery will lure me back again and again.
Robert Hall Winery is located at 3443 Mill Road off Highway 46 East, three miles east of Paso Robles. The Open Daily for tasting room is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. most days. Click here for more information, or call 805.239.1616.