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Bodegas Paso wins gold in international wine competition

Bodegas Paso Robles, which specializes in Spanish and Portuguese varietals, was one of two American producers to win gold at the seventh annual international contest of tempranillos.

Tempranillos al Mundo was founded by the Spanish Federation of Associations of Oenologists.

“It’s the first year I’ve entered it,” said Bodegas Paso Robles winemaker and co-owner Dorothy Shuler. “I normally wouldn’t have. It’s expensive.”

But as a new board member for the Tempranillo Advocates Producers and Amigos Society (TAPAS), she felt some responsibility to submit her wine for judging to the 2011 tasting, held in November.

Normally it’s in Spain. This year, it left that country for the first time.

“They moved it to New York City,” Shuler said, which made entry less expensive. “We only had to ship our wines to New York.”

More than 400 tempranillos were submitted by producers in a dozen countries. Of 54 gold medals awarded, only four went to non-Spanish producers.

Two were Argentine. The other U.S. winner was Hovey Wine in the Sierra Foothills appellation.

“They rank you,” said Shuler, whose wine ranked 27th. “You know exactly where you come in. It’s a big deal for a Paso wine to do that well.”

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