Vista Del Rey Vineyards » Profile
Open most Sundays 11 a.m.-5 p.m., special event weekends and weekdays by appointment. Experience the many styles of Zinfandel, Barbera and more, while enjoying the panoramic view of the Santa Lucia Mountains from this acclaimed dry-farmed vineyard. Gourmet food products, local wine country art items and Zinfandel educational materials available. 7340 Drake Road, Paso Robles. 805-467-2138.
Translated in Spanish, Vista Del Rey means "King's View," which is an apt description since its founder's name is Dave King. Vista Del Rey Vineyards consist of two sites: Hacienda (Home) Vineyard and Colina de Roble (Oak Knoll) Vineyard. The mainly southerly facing vineyards are located approximately six miles north of Paso Robles and four miles southwest of San Miguel, California at an elevation of 900 feet.
Winegrower Dave King chose the sites of his vineyards due to the wide diurnal temperature range which he believes promotes the outstanding, rich flavor characteristics of his three planted varietals. The soils were generally formed from the weathering of calcareous sandstone, limestone and shale. They are a moderately deep silty clay loam, well drained and have good moisture retention capability.
Hacienda Vineyard is over 8-plus acres of dry farmed, head trained, spur pruned and hand harvested Zinfandel. The majority of the vineyard was planted in 1981 in a 10 x 11 foot diamond configuration with a small interspersed, drip assisted portion added in 1989. Colina de Roble Vineyard is 18 acres with the vineyard development still in progress. In 1996, 4 acres of Barbera and 3 acres of Sangiovese were planted. Seven acres of Zinfandel were added in the spring of 1997. Vine spacing is 7 x 11 feet with vertical trellis and drip irrigation systems installed. Vista Del Rey Vineyards considers its flagship grape to be Zinfandel, considered by some the best known and revered Paso Robles varietal. The Vista Del Rey Vineyards Zinfandel grapes produce grapes with rich, wild berry-like flavors, possessing moderate, soft tannins.
Barbera is the second most widely planted red wine grape in the Vista Del Rey Vineyards. The vigorous vine is a late ripener, with the grapes having the potential to produce deep purple, high acid wines with mouth-filling plum and berry fruit flavors and a bone-dry finish.
Sangiovese, the third varietal, is the most widely planted grape in Italy and is the principal grape in the fabled Chianti. Vista Del Rey's well-drained clay calcareous soil and warm to hot growing season provide ideal conditions for this hardy varietal. It yields well-balanced wines with good structure.
Dave enjoyed a challenging, diversified career prior to acquiring Vista Del Rey Vineyards in 1994. After earning his degree in Agricultural Engineering from Oregon State University, he pursued a 22 year US Navy career which included five ship tours, teaching geology, oceanography and chemistry at the Naval Academy, and tours with two high technology Navy laboratories, specializing in state-of-the-art undersea warfare systems. Post-Navy employment was as a Systems Engineer with Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC).
Dave has written and published a successful newsletter, "King's Korner of the Wine World" and is a feature/technical writer and consultant to Central Coast vintner and grower associations, the Morro Bay Harbor Festival and the KCBX Central Coast Wine Classic. He is also on the board of directors of the Morro Bay Harbor Festival and American Red Cross, San Luis Obispo County Chapter.
To meet "Dry-Farm" Dave is to get an education on wines and the vineyards they come from.