Vivant Fine Cheese: A must-visit shop in downtown Paso

Wednesday, April 13th, 2022


Something for everyone from the gourmet cheese novice to the connoisseur

Vivant Fine Cheese in Paso Robles is a gourmet cheese tasting room featuring premium local and imported handcrafted artisan cheeses paired with the finest Central Coast wine and beer. “We are located right in the heart of historic Downtown Paso Robles and easily accessed for those wishing to take our exceptional cheeses along with their wine tasting,” says owner Danika Gordon.

Vivant Fine Cheese is a retail cheese shop and a wholesale cheese supplier to over 150 wineries, restaurants and finer stores. The company offers over 200 different cheeses. The friendly staff offers in-house wine and cheese pairings with varietals from J Dusi, Hearst Ranch and more.

Vivant also offers a delicious lunch menu including soups, salads, sandwiches, and grab-and-go lunches. A selection of cheese boards, charcuterie platters, picnic baskets and boxed lunch sandwiches are available; dine in or take on a wine tasting trip or hike along the Central Coast.

“I frequent there to expand my pairing knowledge of cheese and wine,” says Betsy Canter, local food blogger, “I was impressed at the depth of knowledge and amazing choices Danika offered.”

The local go-to cheese source since 2006

Vivant Fine Cheese has been a Paso Robles fixture since 2006. Gordon took her lifelong interest in cheese through the Cal Poly Dairy Science program where she also worked in the creamery. Four years in the creamery taught her to make cheese, butter, ice cream and bottled milk. The last two years focused on sales marketing, which launched her 10-year career as a cheese broker.

Gordon bought and sold “truckloads of cheese” on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and sold cheese to large manufacturers such as Kraft and Sargento. After working in the cheese brokerage industry for ten years. She decided to open her own business in June 2006.

“The last two years before I opened the shop, I was commuting to Wisconsin two weeks a month and living on the Central Coast two weeks a month. I was ready to come home,” says Gordon. “I saw a need for a cheese shop in Paso Robles to service the wineries, and Robert Gilson, owner of Hotel Cheval, was willing to invest in the shop to help get me started.” At first, Vivant Fine Cheese was a wholesale-only business operating out of the “big cheese truck.” The truck, equipped with a real-time computer system with scales, refrigeration, and hot and cold running water, was a regular sight at local wineries. Within a few months, the need for a retail shop became apparent and Vivant Fine Cheese as we know it today opened.

Vivant Fine Cheese is located at 821 Pine Street, Suite B. Open daily, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information call (805) 226-5530 or visit


About the Author