The Share the Bottle ethos is "shared bottles are the best bottles," which happens to be how we discover most of our wine. A friend shares a great bottle of wine with us, we end up visiting the winery to learn more, become hooked, and then tell you about it. One of our favorite wineries that we've discovered this way is Herman Story.
A few years ago, our friends Gaby and Steve shared some Herman Story wine with us. They had their own great story to share and wanted to serve the wine that went with it.
Gaby and Steve had recently made a trip to Paso Robles and went out for a day of wine tasting. There were several wineries on their itinerary, but they ended up spending their whole day drinking wine and swapping stories with Russell P. From, Herman Story's owner, winemaker, and sole employee.
Did I mention the wine was outstanding?
Of course we had to go, so we made plans to visit Herman Story when we made a trip to Paso Robles in 2011 (First Impression: Paso Robles Wine Country).
We had such a great time that managed to take just one picture:
We learned there's a lot to like about this winery beyond the outstanding wines. It starts with Russell, who makes you feel like you are drinking wine with a buddy, albeit one who knows an awful lot about winemaking. When we visited his tasting room, we spent two hours chatting with Russell and his girlfriend, trying different wines and talking about everything from the wine industry to camping.
Everything he sells is the same price (currently $42 per bottle), and he pretty much sells out of whatever he makes. You can join the wine club, but there's a wait list, so getting your hands on a bottle feels like winning a prize. Despite the exclusivity of his wine, his casual approach is refreshing. The last wine club shipment announcement we received contained an offer to have him come to your house and pour wine for your friends as long as you let him crash on your couch.
You can also pretty much guarantee that Herman Story won't be on your local restaurant's wine list. Which, of course, is another great way to start a conversation and perhaps share a bottle.