Page 103 - San Luis Obispo Visitors Guide • Summer 2022
P. 103

Wine Tasting
Sip wine and enjoy live music this summer at Midnight Cellars
Family-owned, multi-generational winery produces estate-grown wines with attention to detail
     Midnight Cellars is a multi-gen- erational winery that began in 1995. Back then, Robert and Mary Jane Hartenberger along with their sons and daughter in-law, left everything behind in Chicago and migrated to Paso Robles to fulfill their dad’s dream of owning a win- ey. It has since been passed down to their son Richard Hartenberger, now second-generation owner and winemaker.
The Hartenberger family planted the 30-acre estate vineyard in the spring of 1995. The vineyard, now part of the esteemed Willow Creek District AVA, is comprised of five different, trellis trained varietals: eight acres of chardonnay, eight acres of cabernet sauvignon, eight acres of merlot, eight acres of zinfandel, and a half-acre of petit verdot. Two acres of head-trained malbec was later planted on the tasting room property, which is located off the Highway 46 West.
The established vineyards now
yield one to two tons of prime fruit per acre. The grapes are hand- harvested when ripe, requiring a bit more time on the vine to assure the acidity necessary to produce wines with more strength and age ability. Midnight Cellars strives to grow concentrated, bold fruit each year. Their estate-grown fruit is not sold to other producers; it remains solely in the Midnight wine portfolio.
Midnight’s production facility is located on their Anderson Road property, adjacent to the tasting room. During harvest, fruit is brought in and is two-table sorted, fermented, and barrel stored in French oak.
The Midnight Cellars Tast- ing Garden is their newest feature not to be missed. Their beautiful garden is now the site of outdoor tastings, picnics and live music events.
“In regards to the future of Midnight Cellars and Paso Robles as a whole, I am hopeful that we
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