French wine makers appear to adore Paso Robles as much as the rest of us. But they most certainly have different reasons. Anyone can tell France and Paso have similarities in climate and soil. Yet, Paso has more soil types than any other viticultural area. This allows for a diversity of grape varietals and flavors.
Sebastien Noel, a Frenchman with a California winemaking soul, is most excited about the Paso Robles growing region for its many different soil types. He is in love with his California fruit yet bound and determined to bring French techniques and styles to the Central Coast.
Where can you taste wines like this? Currently, he offers tastings of his Nobelle Wines in the private room of a beautiful spa and bar called Twist on Spring Street. Yet, he will surely soon expand and become one of those popular tasting rooms that line the square. So, catch him while he’s hot and take advantage of the opportunity to get a fab haircut, massage, or mani/pedi, while wine tasting.
Our tasting began with one of the best rose wines found in the state. A rose wine is one that is made out of red grapes but designed as a white wine. They end up with a beautiful rose color but Sebastien’s is more of a coral or salmon color and is refreshingly absent of sweetness or a sugar aftertaste. It also has the generous big body that red wine lovers seek so it could just be the best of both worlds.
France’s best kept secret is a walnut wine that Sebastien is working to craft with the same spirit and flavor that he remembers from his homeland. This may sound sweet but it is made from the tart bitter green shell of the nut so imparts little sweetness yet the rich texture and layers of a most unique libation. I imagine this makes it an ideal pairing for rich cheeses. Be on the lookout for this walnut wine to hit the market as soon as California law figures out how to classify it.