Thursday, July 20, 2017

Thomas Hill Organics in Paso Robles

I recently had the opportunity to dine at Thomas Hill Organics Bistro and Wine Lounge in Paso Robles, a farm-to-table restaurant dedicated to showcasing the bounty of California's Central Coast. Thomas Hill Organics opened in 2009 and quickly became the must-do restaurant when visiting in the region. Eight years later, they are still at the top of the hip dining scene that they helped to create in the small friendly town.

I highly recommend that you add it to your itinerary if you are traveling to Paso Robles or San Luis Obispo. The menu changes regularly as new ingredients come in and go out of season, you can check out the current menus on-line to have an idea of what to expect. I was there for a four course dinner that was paired with local wines, here are some highlights from that meal.

The Rosé de Pomar 2016 from Pomar Junction Vineyards made from 100% Syrah provided a refreshing start and was a perfect complement to the strawberry gazpacho.

The Niner Marsanne Reserve 2014 was a worthy salad companion in the second course. Fresh tropical fruit flavors and a light honeyed note contrasted beautifully against the beets, macerated onions and goat cheese while the citrus dressing and citrus finish of the wine sang in unison.

The third course began with the Wheelhouse Zinfandel from Sextant Wines, smooth and spicy with ripe red berries and a light earthy note, this red wine was delicious with the duck confit served with spinach, lentils and orange gastrique, a rustic yet rich pairing.

Our final course was a delicious grilled ribeye with rainbow swiss chard and potato confit. I, unfortunately, did not take a photo, I dived right into that plate.

I did get a photo of two local winemakers who poured two big reds to accompany this dish. On the left, Geoff Barr showing off his Barr Estate Malbec 2011 and on the right, Matt Merrill with his Pomar Junction Winery Cab Forward 2014, both were excellent with the beef and are wines worth seeking for your next steak night at home.

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