Now you can drink to a good cause in San Luis Obispo County.
Paso Robles winery Hayseed and Housdon just opened its first tasting room at 1122 Railroad St. — and half of the profits will go to local nonprofit groups.
Owner and vintner Ted Ross plans to add more wines, and with them more nonprofit beneficiaries, in the future.
“I think giving back is a good way for me and the winery to become an active participant in the community,” said Ross, who moved to Paso Robles 10 years ago and started making wine in 2016.
Ross said the “Hayseed” part of the winery’s name references his “country roots” growing up in the Central Valley. And Housdon is his grandmother’s maiden name.
“I’ve always been kind of a hayseed, and I want the winery to represent that, be very local and approachable,” Ross said. “A lot of wineries come here after selling a software firm and drive a billion dollars into Paso. My approach is different, more humble.”
Ross said his style of winemaking involves picking grapes early, resulting in a lower alcohol content — below 14 percent. He said that makes the wines easy to drink and food-friendly.
Hayseed and Housdon’s wines are poured in a 700-square-foot former garage on Railroad Street. Ross said a roll-up glass door will allow the space to be open air on nice days.
Ross describes the style of the so-called “tasting garage” as “modern western.” There are portraits hanging up of working people, who Ross dubs his “hayseed heroes.”
“These are ordinary people from small towns, but they did extraordinary things for other folks,” Ross said.
Hayseed and Housdon’s tasting room had a soft opening Aug. 11 and will officially open Saturday.
A tasting is $10, which is waived if a bottle of wine is purchased. Bottles range in price from $26 to $38.
The tasting room will be open noon to 9 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, noon to 6 p.m. Sunday through Monday and by appointment only Tuesday and Wednesday. For more information, call 805-674-4700 or visit hayseedandhousdon.com.