Hi Paso! We ♥ Sunset Magazine. We are both subscribers and have attended almost all the annual Celebration Weekends in Menlo Park. And of course we love Paso! So it is no secret or surprise that we have been looking forward to this event since we [accidentally] found out about it in May. We come down on Friday to make a weekend of it. As always, Paso is beautiful. It is a gorgeous warm night. Not wanting to be indoors we decide to eat at Panolivo where we can always count on outdoor seating. To our surprise the menu has been changed, and for the better. Unlike last time when we had problems ordering because of lack of choices, this time we have problems ordering because of too many good choices. Beautiful weather, yummy dinner, and a great bottle of 07' Linne Calodo Slacker wraps up our evening.
9:15 The event is at Santa Margarita Ranch, about 20 miles from Paso. We decide to take the shuttle so we can drink and not worry about driving back. The shuttle is scheduled to leave at 9:45 from Paso Robles Inn. We are done with breakfast early so we slowly and lazily dilly dally our way across the square.
D&A: Where does the shuttle stop?
The gal: The shuttle just left.
D&A: What do you mean the shuttle left! It is too early!
The gal: The shuttle left at 9:15.
D&A: According to the schedule, the shuttle should leave at 9:45! It is only 9:19!
The gal: The shuttle left at 9:15.
When's Your Birthday? We end up driving ourselves. We park at the first lot we see and catch the shuttle up to the entrance, only find out that the visitor parking lot is actually next to the entrance. Woops! Next, we get carded! (with our drivers licenses way back in the car): the gal takes a look at both of us, turns to Dan and declares, "I'm not worried about you; I'm worried about her!" Assana is happy to look younger! Fortunately we do find another guy who has no problem seeing the grey in our hair! Don't know if we should be happy we are in, or sad that we look our ages!
Farmers There is a good selection of Paso wineries and restaurants. Ironically, in this massive ranch, they are all clumped together, each with a teeny counter. We are a bit surprised that after having paid a substantial sum for entry, every workshop has its own fee, which we haven't already paid, and thus we can't get into. Meeting and greeting the farmers is fun. They are all happy to tell you all about their crop, anywhere from all kinds of asian apple pear, to super fragrant cantaloups, to fabulous dry-farmed watermelons. Happy Acres Farm has a good seminar about cheese making; we last for most of it.
There are chickens, food vendors, of course wineries, and a silly train. But over all the event underwhelms us... and in retrospect we are kind'a glad that we drove ourselves so we can get out when we want.
Paso Glow By the time we get back to Paso there is a big hubbub of activity on the main square: dozens of people are running around setting up for the evening's dinner on the square, Paso Glow. Our table is hosted by Wild Horse Winery. The other five guests at our table are no-shows, so we enjoy having our hostess, Christi, all to ourselves… at least for a bit.
Late To The Party Halfway thru appetizers a couple is dropped off at our table. Turns out someone sat in their seats at a different table and wouldn't get up! Strange, but they are quite nice and fun, and just as we start having a great evening there comes this odd and, well, kind'a slutty woman. She is either high, or drunk, or has lost a lot of brain cells in life being high and drunk, or all of the above! She plops herself down - thank goodness not right next to us - and starts talking about herself. And, believe me, there's really nothing there to talk about! We feel sorry for Christi who is stuck next to her, but thank our blessings that it is not us! Sorry Christi! Hope you forgive us.
Eggs'n Saussage Our fabulous neighbors, Dawn & Greg, have invited us over for brunch. Their daughter, Lauren, is also visiting. We get a tour of their house, which is lovely and beautifully decorated (we are so going to steal some of their decorating ideas!). Dawn makes a wonderfully yummy breakfast (Eggs with fresh herbs from the garden, saussage, pastries, etc.). We all have a great time catching up and gossiping about the rest of the [crazy] neighbors.
Day Dream Once again, we love everything about Paso. It is harvest time, which means all the vines are full of plump big fat juicy grapes (which of course we sample!). Opolo lets us watch them transfer a fresh-off-the-vine crate of grapes into their stemmer. It was fun!
We spend the drive home daydreaming about building our dream home. Especially now that we have gotten to know some of our neighbors better.