Paso Robles- Swiss Former Farmers Thriving in the Central Coast

6/17/2009

One of this month's Gold Series selections comes to us from Paso Robles Winery, a venture owned and operated by two Swiss expatriates Hans Nef and Hans Michel (pronounced Mikel) that developed as a result of the pair's long-term association in agricultural-related business endeavors. Both grew up in Swiss farming families. "I learned at an early age to appreciate the role of agr iculture in our family's lives, and of its importance to everyone's existence." says Michel. Upon meeting, they immediately formed Paso Robles as a grape producing company. Over the course of several years, they planted more vineyards and decided to develop Paso Robles into a major winery entity. "I want Vina Robels to express a unique blend of European heritage and American opportunity," remarked Nef. "As individuals, the principles of Vina Robles are rooted in the Old World. As winemakers, we are inspired by the New World. But both worlds bring value to what we do, and we endeavor to capture this distinction in our wines." The growth rate for Vina Robles started slowly, and has remained steady in recent years. The new 14,000 square foot state-of-the-art tasting room and hospitality center recently opened on Highway 46 East in Paso Robles. It sits nearby Vina Robles' three existing vineyards and boasts a unique balance of modern luxury and old world charm. Nef and Michel both credit their success  to a number of key factors, including their Swiss winemaker, Matthias Gubler, who has carefully orchestrated all of the growth associated with Vina Robles. Brought aboard in 1999, Gubler brought an incredible winemaking resume that included stints in Switzerland, France and Italy, as well as an earlier role as harvest worker with Brutocao Cellars in Northern California's Mendocino County. Vina Robles 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon was produced from Paso Robles' Huerhuero Vineyard on the east side of the expansive Central Coast appellation. Awarded 4 Stars by Restaurant Wine Online and named a Best Buy with 88 Points by Robert Whitely of Wine Talk at San Diego Union Tribune, this Cabernet Sauvignon is very characteristic of Paso Robles, showing lovely soft red fruit and an alluring floral characteristic with impressive potential to age well. Vina Robles' 2005 Cabernet is also Recommended with 3 Stars from Decanter magazine. Please enjoy this month's Gold Series shipment and let us know what you think of the Vina Robles 2005 Cabernet.