19 Mar Please The Palate Pick of the Week: Paso Robles Wine Merchant
After a day of wine tasting in Paso Robles, downtown Paso Robles is usually the place to go. The charming square is filled with restaurants and bars and it is enjoyable to walk around the square. But a few blocks off the square is the new Paso Market Walk and one of the businesses located there is the Paso Robles Wine Merchant, the Please The Palate Pick of the Week.
The new Paso Market Walk is located on Spring Street, near 18th Street. The Paso Market Walk is a newly restored Victorian home that was first built in 1890 and then converted into a community nursery before being vacated.
Today Paso Market Walk is a mixed-use development that includes an outdoor picnic area, lofts for short-term stays, two restaurants, and a marketplace with local purveyors including a brewery, a vegan creamery, a bakery, and Paso Robles Wine Merchant.
Paso Robles Wine Merchant is owned by Justin and Julie Fischer who moved from Los Angeles to Paso Robles in 2018. Justin had been working in finance for 10 years before quitting to attend culinary school, followed by working in restaurants in Los Angeles. Julie was a retail buyer for Macy’s and Ross Stores. They got married in 2016 in Paso Robles and knew that was where they wanted to end up.
The Paso Robles Wine Merchant offers 40 wines, all locally sourced with a focus on sustainability. More than 10 wines are available by the glass, the rest are available by the bottle. The food menu features a seasonal menu sourced from local and organic farms. The menu is pescatarian but is also vegetarian, gluten-free, and vegan friendly.
We started with fresh Morro Bay oysters paired with the Giornata Orangotango 2021, an orange wine made from 41% Falanghina, 18% Pinot Grigio, 7% Fiano, and 29% Arneis. I loved this wine, with its aromas of jasmine, tropic fruit, and tea. The texture of the wine is soft with a subtle tannic structure that made it a great wine to not only pair with the oysters but also with the rest of lunch.
While kale salads can be found on the majority of menus in Los Angeles, the Paso Wine Merchant’s Rustic Kale Salad, with spiced Marcona almonds, roasted kabocha squash, cow/sheep cheese, and lemon dressing, is the first kale salad in Paso Robles.
The Mighty Cap Mushroom Toast with garlic confit, thyme, crème fraiche, olive oil, Maldon salt will satisfy any mushroom lover. The creme fraiche and olive oil were absorbed by the crisply toasted bread and the mushrooms were meaty yet tender.
For the pasta dishes at Paso Robles Wine Merchant, they use locally produced ETTO pasta, made by Brian and Stephy Terrizzi who also produce Giornata Wines. This week they were offering an At Her Table Food & Wine Special, a 7-day countywide annual event that brings awareness to women-owned and co-owned food and beverage businesses on the central coast! Their special menu item was ETTO James Berry Vineyard Meyer Lemon Ravioli. Stuffed with ricotta, the ravioli were delicate with a lovely citrus finish.
Do not miss the Grilled Cheese at Paso Robles Wine Merchant! Luckily I was not alone so I was able to share both sandwiches.
The Artisanal Grilled Cheese is made with 5 year aged cheddar and swiss cheese and served with a side of tomato jam and cornichons
The Brie, Fig, and Apple Grilled Cheese is made with with Fuji apple, brie, and fig jam.