Lone Madrone Winery
Paso Robles AVA
Neil is one of the most adventurous, audacious, and able winemakers in California, producing highly acclaimed wines
Lone Madrone was founded in 1996 by the brother and sister duo, Neil Collins and Jackie Meisinger. Since the beginning, it has been their premier goal to produce distinctive wines exclusively from vineyards in the rugged hillsides of westside Paso Robles on California's Central Coast. Although very boutique in size, Lone Madrone has been able to showcase many diverse offerings throughout the years, including a range of rare single varietal wines and extraordinarily different blends of Rhône, Bordeaux and Italian varieties. This winery may fly under the radar, but it is certainly one worthy of your attention in the booming Paso Robles wine growing appellation.
Born and raised in Bristol, England, Neil Collins was trained as a chef and originally came to the United States for a six week vacation to visit his sister in Santa Barbara, California - and he never really left. He started work in the Santa Barbara restaurant business and over time, became intrigued by wine and its production. Neil decided to work a year in a wine cellar to better understand the winemaking process, but he became so enamoured with it that he decided to keep going. After stints at Wild Horse Winery and Adelaida Cellars, Neil went on to Châteauneuf-du-Pape where he spent a year learning the cellars and vineyards of the famed Chateau de Beaucastel, one of the oldest and most highly regarded estates in France. Upon his return to the Central Coast in 1998, he became the winemaker and vineyard manager at Tablas Creek Vineyard, now one of the most respected wineries in Paso Robles, and it is a position he still holds to this day.
Neil Collins founded Lone Madrone Winery in 1996 alongside his sister Jackie, and together, they have built the entity into a wonderful family winery on the westside of Paso Robles. Neil utilizes Old World growing methods and winemaking techniques when crafting his exciting blends and obscure varietals, and result is distinctive, characteristically balanced wines with nice structure and finesse. He doesn't make the big, typical Paso Robles wines that have become very popular in recent years - instead, he offers a more graceful European style that certainly stands out in the crowd.
Tastings of Lone Madrone wines are available at the winery's ranch-style property which includes a restored barn that has been completely transformed into a rustic yet elegant modern tasting room. The winery sits on a hillside between the mountains and the sea in westside Paso Robles, surrounded by beautiful, meticulously cared for vineyards. It is worth a visit if you ever find yourself in the area. Cheers!