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The Wine History Project

We collect and present two centuries of local viticulture history through research, interviews, exhibitions, films, and publications and work with local vintners and growers to bring to life the wine history of San Luis Obispo County.

Together We Can Preserve the Story of Central Coast Winemaking

Explore the stories of the men and women who made viticultural history in our county in People. Learn about the historical tools and equipment used in cultivating grapevines and making wine in Objects. Delve deep into the chronology of wine history in the county in Wine.

Reach out to us and help contribute to our continually expanding wine history timeline and archival collection. Contact Us

  • Legends

Art Norman (1933-2006)

Art initiated a movement of small growers focusing on premium grapes for local winemakers crafting small production fine wines when, in 1972, he planted the first vineyards of Zinfandel and Barbera on Vineyard Drive in the Adelaida region in west Paso Robles.

From the Collection

Handmade Balloon Bottles

Wine bottles with a balloon-shaped body are known as balloon bottles. Fragile and often covered with a weaving of straw or raffia, they also became known as wicker bottles.

Wine - 18th Century History

Wine History: 1500 to 1800

The art of winemaking and the rootstock that we call the Mission Grape, belonging to the famed Vitis vinifera species of grapes, were brought to California by the Spaniards. The grape, first known as Listan Prieto, arrived in Mexico around 1540 and was planted in what is now New Mexico in the 1620s.

Wine - 19th Century History

The Wine House – Paso Robles 1887

1144 Pine Street, located on the southeast corner of Pine at 12th Street, has been many things over the years. It is currently an Italian restaurant and formerly home to Villa Creek. Further back in time, to the year 1887 to be exact, the property housed The Wine House and Billiard Hall, owned and operated by E.J. Carpeaux.