—1,500 people celebrated in Paso Robles Wine Country for a good cause on Saturday, Aug. 12, 2017 at the Paso Robles Event Center. The Paso Robles Rotary Club rolled out the red carpet for 35 local wineries and breweries who went “head to head” in a wine tasting-beer tasting-barbeque competition.
“It was amazing!” said attendee Tim Wassam. “I wait all year for this.”
Event founder Gary Eberle says he was extremely pleased with the turnout.“This is the best wine event in our area. Everyone is having a great time, drinking local wines and beers and feasting on this gourmet food.”
In its 19th year, the Paso Robles Rotary Winemakers’ Cookoff has raised more than $600,000 for local high school scholarships. In 2017, the club offered $55,000 to Paso Robles high school seniors, making the Paso Robles Rotary the largest donor to the Paso Robles High School.
Participants of the event are asked to create an appetizer on the grill to be judged by professional food and wine judges as well as attendees of the event. The result is the Judges’ Choice Award, the People’s Choice Award, the Spirit Award and a Professional Chef Award. This year’s judges were Robert Whitley, Mike Cervin, William Bloxsom-Carter, Sarah Schneider and Mira Honeycutt. This year, many of the winners were first-time participants. “The food this year was outstanding,” says Judge Robert Whitley. “I think it was the best year ever for this event.”
The other winners of the cookoff are:
Honorable Mention- Derby
1-Derby – Lefondusac w/ BoccaBella Farms (tie)
2-Diablo Paso w/Mistura
Honorable Mention – Justin w/Scotty’s BBQ
3-Earth & Fire Brewery
Honorable Mention- Tap It Brewery
1. Diablo Paso
Honorable Mention- Halter Ranch