Boutique wine, beer, and spirits makers’ passion and iconoclasm set the tone at welcoming Paso Robles light-industrial hangout.
To experience the creativity and fervor of Paso Robles’ indie beer, wine, and spirits scene, plan a stop at Tin City, a light-industrial complex 4 or so miles south of downtown. The passion and iconoclasm of the artisanal entrepreneurs here set the tone at this welcoming hangout.
Boutique Winery Tasting Rooms
A dozen-plus small wineries make and sell wine at Tin City, among them Field Recordings, Levo, Desparada, and Nicora. Aaron, named for owner-winemaker Aaron Jackson, who makes age-worthy Petite Sirah, is worth investigating. For wines from Italian grapes, check out Giornata (“A foot in Paso, the other in Italy”). ONX Wines near the back of the complex is known for sturdy yet polished blends from mostly Rhône grape varieties. Wine Shine, Tin City’s resident distillery, makes artisanal brandies from high-quality local grapes plus small-batch spirits.
The tasting experiences these enthusiastic pioneers provide tend to be more informal than ones at wineries or in downtown tasting rooms, and you’re very likely to meet the people who hand-crafted your beverages. Chat more than a minute or two with any of them, and it’s easy to understand why they’d chuck sensible careers to pursue their dreams. You may even find yourself hankering to follow suit.
BarrelHouse presents live music in its beer garden.
BarrelHouse Brewing Co., the anchor tenant, is by far the most popular of the beverage makers. The brewery has made a name for itself with its BarrelHouse Blonde, IPA, Rye IPA, Stout, and other beers. Its bar and beer garden attract crowds, the latter particularly so on days it presents live music.
Tin City Tips
BarrelHouse is open daily from 11 am to 9 pm. The wineries’ days and hours vary. ONX and a few others pour wines daily, but many tasting rooms close on Tuesday and Wednesday (some also on Monday). Two good stops for food are McPhee’s Canteen (pizzas, salads, burgers, tacos, sandwiches) and, next door, Etto Pastificio (grab-and-go cheese, charcuterie, and the like).
Tin City appears in 8 Reasons to Visit Paso Robles Now.
This story first appeared online in 2017; it was updated in 2022.