Ex-Porn Star turned Winemaker- That’s what he said.

3 years ago

Wine ReviewIn Los Angeles where the majority of the creatively inclined population has to stitch together an income from a variety of sources, one can meet the dancer/school teacher, or the freelance writer/barista, but the ex-porn star turned winemaker is a definite first for me.

Disclaimer: I am a blogger, not an investigative journalist, so while I did try to fact check some of the following post, I really did not try that hard. Because really, who wants to spend the morning scouring the web for an ex-porn star? Can you imagine? I did, and that’s why I decided to just go with it, which is another fun idiosyncrasy of living in L.A. You are what you say you are, no proof necessary.

We met Victor Abascal at Silverlake Wine during their weekly Thursday night tasting event. Abascal is the owner/winemaker at Vines on the Marycrest in Paso Robles where he specializes in Zinfandel and Rhone Blends. As soon as we approached the bar and even before talking to him, I knew that he was the winemaker. He was exuberant, friendly, informative and poured generously. His excitement for the wine was contagious.

We tasted 4 different wines, a 2012 Viognier and Granache Blanc blend which was lovely on a hot summer afternoon. This wine was cold, crisp and light bodied with faint fruity notes. Next, Abascal poured us his 2011 GSM “Heart of Glass,” named after the 1978 Blondie song. He said that this song was the musical embodiment of the wine because like the song, his wine had a haunting first note. I’m not sure if this was an accurate description of the wine but I’m a sucker for a good story. Besides, just thinking of Paso Robles and GSMs makes me smile. GSM (Grenache, Syrah and Mourvèdre) wines, otherwise knows as The Côtes du Rhône Blend, are extremely popular in Paso Robles and to me, they taste like love and new beginnings. GSM wines were how my husband got the courage to propose, and what we celebrated our engagement with.

Winemaker in Paso RoblesBy our third tasting, our group was adequately socially lubed and our conversation somehow got to ex-porn star, jokes about the San Fernando Valley, vacation homes in the Russian River and oh yeah, “This is my favorite wine I’ve ever made, the 2011 Syrah.” It was full-bodied, slightly smoky and even though no self-respecting wine connoisseur would ever say this publicly, just plain good. I liked the Syrah. Our last pour was a Zin from a 57 year old vine. I thought that 57 year old vine would be considered old vine Zin, but apparently it was middle aged vine Zin. (Who knew this was even a thing?) This wine had lots of dark cherry flavors, but was not overwhelming to the palette.

We finished our last wine pour slowly, enjoying the conversation and planning our next trip up to Paso Robles. Cheers!

By: W. Castellanos-Wolf

 

 

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