Press Release – 9/13/17

2017 Garagiste Wine Festival in Paso Robles Brings Over Sixty Micro-Wineries Together Under One Roof – November 10th – 12th

Over 30 grape varieties, 200 different wines, with 25% of winemakers pouring at the festival for the first time


– The Garagiste Wine Festival returns to Paso Robles for the seventh year in a row November 10th – 12th.  Celebrating the passion and spirit of the garagiste winemaker, the festival features over 60 of California’s best micro-wineries, pouring over 200 wines made from over 30 different grape varieties. Over a quarter of the winemakers are pouring for the very first time at the festival which was recently dubbed “tasting nirvana” by the LA Times. Tickets are on sale now at m/buy-tickets/.

“We are proud to continue to be the home of the exploding micro-winery movement in California and to bring more and more of these cutting-edge wineries from across California to Paso Robles,” said Garagiste Festival Co-founder, Doug Minnick. “Unlike other wine events that are geographically or varietal focused, The Garagiste Festival offers a wide variety of wines, styles, and regions. And because our winemakers aren’t concerned with getting their product onto supermarket shelves, they are free to explore their winemaking passions, which makes for an absolutely unparalleled and exciting range of cutting-edge wines.”

This year’s three-day festival includes its popular ‘Rare and Reserve’ event (this time with Tapas!); its epic Grand Tasting at the Paso Fairgrounds; the rollicking Keep It Rockin’After Party, with band High Voltage and local craft beers; and the return of the Garagiste Paso Passport day, which offers discounts and events to festival attendees at garagiste wineries throughout the area.  The festival’s signature tasting seminars also return to explore the remarkable diversity of the Paso Robles area, this time focusing on locally grown and vinified Rhone and Bordeaux grape varieties. Moderated by Garagiste Festival co-founder, KRUSH radio host and Golden Triangle Wines winemaker, Stewart McLennan, the seminars are part of the festival’s VIP package and also feature Rendarrio Vineyards, Vinemark Cellars, Brecon Estate and Sans Liege.

“No matter how much you know about wine already – a lot or a little – you will come away with new discoveries and expanded horizons. The festival is a fantastic place to learn, and it’s a Garagiste event, so we promise it will be fun. No snobs allowed, as always,” continued Minnick.

The nonprofit festival has raised over $100,00 for the education of future winemakers through The Garagiste Scholarship at Cal Poly and helped ignite the awareness, business and reputations of hundreds of artisan winemakers.

“At each table, a passionate winemaker (or two or three) is on hand pouring his/her wines, sharing the winery back story and wine insights,” said McLennan. “And, because the wines are handcrafted in such small quantities, The Garagiste Festival is probably your only chance to really taste and discover the essence – and the future – of this uniquely American brand of winemaking, which is helping drive innovation industrywide.”

Launched in 2011 in Paso Robles (which was named America’s Best Wine Country Town by Sunset Magazine), the Garagiste Festival was the first event to define, and shine a spotlight on, the American “garagiste*” wine movement, which has exploded over the past five years, and features commercial artisan winemakers who handcraft under 1,500 cases a year and pay close, hands-on attention to every wine they make.  Recently featured in Wine Enthusiast Magazine, the festivals have introduced over 500 outstanding artisan winemakers to thousands of passionate wine consumers, members of the trade and media, raising the profiles of many of the winemakers nationally for the first time.

For full schedule details, go to m/2017-paso-fest/

Among the over 60 winemakers already scheduled to pour are:

Alma Sol Winery, Alta Colina, Amor Fati, Artisan Uprising, Ascension Cellars, Asuncion Ridge, Bon Niche Cellars, Brophy Clark Cellars, Byron Blatty Wines*, Caldera Cuvee, Caliza Winery, Camlow Cellars, Circle B Vineyards, Cloak & Dagger Wines, Copia Vineyards, Croma Vera, Cutruzzola Vineyards, D. Volk Wines*, DENO Wines, Diablo Paso, Dubost Winery, Dunning Vineyards*, Golden Triangle, Hoi Polloi Wines, Hoyt Family Vineyards, Jacob Toft Wines, JP3 Wines, Kaleidos Wines, Kimsey Vineyards*, Kula Vineyards*, Last Light Wine Co., Lazarre Wines, Lost Blues*, Lynch Wines, Maidenstoen Wines, Marin’s Vineyard, MCV Wines, Mollie Wines, Monochrome Wines*, Montagne Russe*, Nicora Wines, Nowell-Smith Wines, On Your Left Wines, Paix Sur Terre, Pelletiere Winery*, Piedra Creek*, Powell Mountain Cellars, Pulchella Winery, Ranchero Cellars, RN Estate, Ryan Cochrane Wines, Saint K Wines*, Seven Angels Cellars, Seven Oxen Wines, Shell Creek Vineyards, Silver Wines*, Stolo Family Vineyards, Tlo Wines, Tolo Cellars*, Two Moons, Ultima Tulie*, Vinemark Cellars, Vino Vargas, Volatus Wine* and Weatherborne.

* First time pouring at the Paso Festival.

To preserve an intimate experience for consumers with one-on-one interaction with winemakers, tickets are very limited for the Garagiste Festivals and always sell out. To purchase tickets go to m/buy-tickets/. To learn more about The Garagiste Festival, and to get the latest event info, sign-up for The Dirt at m/sign-up/. Or follow us on Twitter (@GaragisteFest) or Facebook.

Sponsors include:

Adelaide Inn, Allegretto Resort, Barrelhouse Brewing, Bidwell Insurance, Clearwater Tech, Digital Dogma, Distinctive Glassware, ETS Labs, Farm Credit West, Glenn Burdette, G3 Enterprises, Laffort USA, La Quinta, mWEBB Communications, Paso Oaks, PRWCA, TRPA, WiVi Central Coast Symposium and Trade Show

For sponsorship info, email

*Garagistes (garage-east) is a term originally used in the Bordeaux region of France to denigrate renegade small-lot wine makers, sometimes working in their “garages” (anything considered not a chateau), who refused to follow the “rules,” and is now a full-fledged movement responsible for making some of the best wine in the world.  The Garagiste Festivals were the first to shine a light on the American garagiste winemaker in 2011.

About The Garagiste Wine Festivals

The Garagiste Wine Festivals (http://www.garagistefestival. com) are the first and only wine festivals dedicated to the undiscovered and under-recognized American artisan ‘garagiste’ producers who are making some of the best, most exciting, handcrafted small-lot production wines in the world. Founded by fellow garagiste winemakers Stewart McLennan and Douglas Minnick, the Garagiste Festivals are committed to discovering the best and most innovative limited-production winemakers and promoting and showcasing them to a broad audience of discerning wine consumers. In addition to its flagship annual festival in Paso Robles, CA, the Garagiste Festival line-up includes Garagiste Festival: Southern Exposure, featuring Santa Ynez Valley garagistes; the Garagiste Festival: Urban Exposure, in Los Angeles; the Garagiste Festial, Northern Exposure, in the Bay Area; winemaker dinners, a newsletter, garagiste profiles and more.

The festivals were named one of the ‘Top Nine Incredible Epicurean Vacations’ in the world by ABC News,* “one of the premier wine events of the year,” by the LA Times and “Best Festival” by Sunset Magazine’s ‘Best of the West.’ The festivals are produced by Garagiste Events, a non-profit dedicated to furthering the education of future winemakers and those training for employment within the wine industry. Garagiste Festivals Inc. is a 5013c non-profit organization and proceeds from the festivals support the Garagiste Festival Scholarship fund of the California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo Wine and Viticulture Department.

Media Contacts:

mWEBB Communications for The Garagiste Festivals
Melanie Webber, melanie(at)mwebbcom(dot)com, 424-603-4340
Crystal Hartwell, crystal(at)mwebbcom(dot)com, 949-929-4637