SLO/Paso Robles

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SLO/Paso Robles: Entertaining

Austin Hope

California Cowboy Barbecue in Paso Robles

A Central California fixture, Austin Hope is the vintner equivalent of a local boy who’s done exceptionally well. A graduate of Cal Poly SLO, he cut his teeth under Caymus’ Chuck Wagner in the Napa Valley. Subsequently he returned home to his family’s vineyards in Paso Robles where he helped found Treana. That winery’s signature blends gave way to a variety of Hope Family Wines labels—Candor, Liberty School, Treana, Troublemaker and, of course, Austin Hope.

Habitués within Hope’s inner circle also appreciate his advanced skill sets that go beyond viniculture. He’s as enthusiastic about showing people a good time as he is about showing off his fruity wares. When entertaining, Hope loves to be outside on a beautiful Paso Robles evening, savoring wines from his vineyards and local contemporaries, and enjoying family and friends.


Recreate the Region

The Menu

For edibles, Hope makes a beeline for his trusty BBQ, grilling up a robust menu including a “Cowboy Paella” westernized with the addition of hanger steak, pork tenderloin, chorizo, jalapeños and kidney beans. He also pulls a recipe card for Troublemaker Burgers made using a custom blend of 25% each prime chuck, Wagyu short ribs, prime hanger steak and beef rib cap fat he developed as “the ultimate burger for grilling” with Bryan Flannery from Flannery Beef.

Cedar plank Chilean sea bass with saffron
Cowboy paella
Bryan Flannery’s troublemaker beef burgers
Austin’s grilled artichokes
BBQ grilled vegetables

The Décor

Earthy and modern, Hope’s style presents an interesting mixture of clean lines, sensibility and rustic Paso Robles charm. Simple and utilitarian, his house sits literally in the center of a vineyard, and is built around one grand room combining the kitchen and the living area. With bright blue accents and bold black-and-white photos that scream rock and roll, the living room is inviting and alive. It spills out onto a large patio with a barbecue grill, fire pit, pool and hot tub, making for an easily traversable indoor-outdoor celebratory segue.

The Playlist

When not traveling to promote his brands, Hope’s usually jet-setting to music festivals like Lollapalooza, Austin City Limits or Coachella, or sitting in a dark bar watching the next up-and-coming band. When choosing a soiree soundtrack, he calls on some of his favorite young-bloods: The Neighborhood, Alt-J, Miike Snow, Mumford & Sons, The Civil Wars, Florence + The Machine, The Black Keys, Rodriguez, Phoenix, Thievery Corporation, The Sheepdogs, Rihanna, Randy Rogers, Band of Heathens.

The Drinks

In selecting some for his fête, Hope sources from within along with a little help from his winemaker friends in
this incredibly fertile and versatile growing region.

Treana 2011 Marsanne-Viognier (Central Coast)
Linne Calodo 2011 Contrarian (Paso Robles)
Austin Hope NV
Treana 2010 Red (Paso Robles)
Linne Calodo 2011 Cherry Red (Paso Robles)
Austin Hope 2011 Hope Family Vineyard Syrah (Paso Robles)


Cedar Plank Chilean Sea Bass with Saffron

Soak 2 untreated cedar planks in water for 1 hour prior to cooking. Place 2 large sea bass filets on each of the planks. Season the filets with fresh lemon juice, salt, pepper and saffron. Drizzle generously with local olive oil. Place the planks on a barbecue grill over medium heat and cook approximately 20 minutes. Serve immediately. Serves 4.


Austin’s Grilled Artichokes 

Prepare a steamer. Add 4 artichokes and steam until al dente, 15 to 20 minutes. Let cool, then quarter the artichokes. Cut the tips of the leaves off and scoop out the insides of the artichoke. Put the quartered artichokes in a large zip-lock bag and add 2 tablespoons of local olive oil, 2 tablespoons of local balsamic vinegar, the juice of ½ a lemon plus salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate overnight. The next day, grill the artichokes over medium heat for approximately 5 minutes and serve. Serves 4 to 6

Brandon Hernandez

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SLO/Paso Robles

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