Most people don’t know of Paso Robles, but it is a cute city just a few hours away from LA. It really is the perfect, best kept secret, for a romantic weekend getaway. It is best known for having tons of wineries. Paso Robles is also home to a fantastic brewery: Firestone Walker. I have had the opportunity to visit Paso on two different occasions and have decided to combine my experiences into a weekend getaway itinerary.
If you are spending a regular weekend in Paso, you’ll most likely be leaving Saturday morning and will be heading back Sunday morning/afternoon. This really only leaves you about a day a half to explore.
Head to Paso sometime in the morning because you are bound to hit at least an hour worth of traffic when driving through LA. When you get to Paso, check into your hotel and UBER everywhere. I would recommend staying at The Oaks Hotel. It is a nice, quiet hotel and only 2 miles away from Downtown Paso Robles. At this point, you’ll probably just have time to visit a winery of choice and grab dinner.
Sculpterra Winery & Vineyards would be my #1 recommendation. We chose this winery because it is unique, in that, there are sculptures all over the winery. From the hotel, it was about a 20 minute UBER ride, but well worth it, since I frown against drinking and driving. At Sculpterra Winery, we were pleasantly surprised with how many of the wines tasted so good. The tastings were also super cheap…especially compared to Temecula. It was 5 tastings for only $10, what a deal! Of course, me and my boyfriend both got 5 tastings each. We also ended up buying 2 bottles and the designs on the bottles also make for cute home decoration too!
For dinner, we decided to head into Downtown Paso Robles and check it out. The downtown area consists of a span of bars and restaurants over a few streets. The main area of downtown though is where there’s a large square park in the middle. Artisan, is located right across that park and offers outdoor seating too, if you’d like. At Artisan, we decided to try out their mushroom toast and mushroom pizza. The mushroom toast was so amazing: consisting of bacon, creme fraiche, and a poached egg on top of warm brioche toast. I also ordered a spicy cocktail drink, which was really tasty and refreshing at the same time.
Before heading back, try and stop by Firestone Walker for an early lunch. All of their beer is excellent, so you can’t go wrong in anything you choose. They also have really good food and are located close to the freeway you’ll need to take back home. Something you should definitely order is their pretzel, which was served with a DBA (double barrel ale) spicy mustard. The spicy mustard is SO good and luckily you can buy a bottle at the store. Aside from pretzels, they serve up a really good BBQ chicken pizza and sandwiches as well.
Tips on When to Go:
Look into a concert at Vina Robles Amphitheatre. It is a cool outdoor concert venue with great beer, wine, and food selections. This was actually one of the reasons for my first trip here.
Another good time to try and make a trip out to Paso is in June. Hence, the reason for my second trip to Paso. The Firestone Walker Invitational is held every June and is known to be one of the best beerfests around. They fly in people from well-known breweries in the states and other countries. The price you pay not only includes an infinite amount of beer samples, but also food samples from many of the local restaurants.