Paso Robles red – 2020 Daou Pessimist


If wine was simple, it wouldn’t be wine.

Perfect example…the red blend.


The typical red blend is…well, the typical red blend is no such thing.

For example, a Bordeaux red is typically a blend

of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot.

But it could also include Cabernet Franc.

Rioja is typically a blend of Tempranillio and Garnacha. 

But it could also include Graciano and/or Mazuelo.

Chianti is typically a blend of Sangiovese and Canaiolo. 

But it could also include Colorino, Cabernet Sauvignon

and even Merlot.


We’ll stop geeking out.  You get the idea.

The makeup of a red blend varies from region to region

and from winemaker to winemaker. 

That’s what make red blends so interesting…and popular.

There’s a red blend for every palate and

every price range.


Basic RGB

It’s Wine Thursday!  

Every Thursday, we check out a good wine

that sells at a good price and is easy to find

at retail and online.  


This week’s wine comes to us from a

hot region that has become a hot wine area.






Where it’s from  

Paso Robles, or Paso as the locals call it,

is about 100 miles northwest of Bakersfield, California.

Speaking of 100, summer time temps in Paso

consistently top the 100 degree mark.

The fastest-growing wine region in the state,  Paso Robles

is a hotbed (pun intended) of winemaking innovation.

Daou Vineyards, one of Paso’s anchors, has been

producing Bordeaux-type reds, such as Cabernet Sauvignon

and Merlot, and unique red blends for over 20 years.


What it is  

Daou’s 2020 Pessimist is a typically atypical red blend.  

The backbone of this wine is the somewhat-obscure

Petit Sirah with Zinfandel and Syrah rounding out the mix.  


Put those three together and you wind up

with an inky/intense/bold offering.  

Dark fruit flavors…plum and black cherry…shine through.  

There’s some oak…a bit of spice…and a touch of vanilla.

The tannins are present but not overpowering.  

For such a broad and complex wine,

it’s quite quaffable on its own.  

But it would pair well with rich sauces

and bleu cheese.   


Where to buy it

Daou’s Pessimist is at Total Wine for $17.97.

The price at Safeway is $19.99.  

Fred Meyer and QFC sell it for $21.99.

Vons has it for $21.10.  The price at Bevmo is $23.99.  

It’s on the shelf at Jewell Osco for $24.99.

Target has it for $25.99.

You can order it from Woods Wholesale for $19.91 

It’s at Stirling Fine Wine for $19.99 

All-Star Wines has it for $20.99 

Same price at Marketview Liquor…$20.99