This is an interesting story…A long time ago in a kingdom far away (Paso Robles) my Grandpa Ron decided to plant grapes in an area where cattle farmers ruled and wineries were just flat out funny. He got my mother and her 5 sisters to help him plant Syrah and Zinfandel vines all high on a hill top in Paso Robles to the dismay and snickering of neighboring ranchers. My Grandpa worked hard and perservered despite all the nay-sayers he encountered. He knew the weather, the hilltop and this cow-town had something special and he knew his grapes were going to make great wine.
And so he made that wine and he called it Ranchita Ranch. It won prizes and acclaim and blue ribbons that made the nay-sayers eat their words. But the upkeep of the vineyard and the expense of the farm proved too much and he had to let it go…all before Paso Robles hit its stride as one of the most notable wine-areas of California.
|the boy and I talking to Teresa, the current owner|
|this is the same trailer and porch my family lived in on the vineyard|
On this latest trip to Paso, the boy, my parents and I found my Grandpa’s Vineyard. According to my mom it’s still so much the same and we even saw the vines that she and her sisters planted back in the 70’s. (They are crooked and lovely.) We met the new owner and she was so friendly and gracious, allowing us to taste the wine she is currently producing from my grandpa’s grapes and showing us around her thriving vineyard. Now called Ranchita Canyon.
|my mom…she planted these grapes!|
It’s amazing to think about this brief life my Grandpa had as a winemaker and though seeing the vineyard was rather bittersweet, it actually fills me with pride– knowing that Grandpa Ron was right about that area, seeing the fruit of my family’s labor (literally) and sharing in the taste of something that continues to grow and change even though our family isn’t always there to see it. It’s like tasting my grandpa’s legacy and it certainly is something to savor.