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Justin Vineyards & Winery named American Winery of the Year

Justin Vineyards & Winery in Paso Robles was named the American Winery of the Year by Wine Enthusiast magazine for its passion for winemaking and commitment to growth and quality.
Justin Vineyards & Winery in Paso Robles was named the American Winery of the Year by Wine Enthusiast magazine for its passion for winemaking and commitment to growth and quality. Courtesy Photo

Citing its passion for winemaking and commitment to growth and quality, Wine Enthusiast magazine has named Justin Vineyards & Winery in Paso Robles the American Winery of the Year.

Wine Enthusiast praised the prescience and hard work of both Justin Baldwin, who founded Justin Vineyards & Winery, for his visionary groundwork, and the Resnick family for its progressive changes since purchasing the winery five years ago. The Resnicks own The Wonderful Company, owner of FIJI Water.

Baldwin remains active at the winery, participating in the blending process and traveling to promote the brand.

Wine Enthusiast called the winery “as robust and relevant as ever,” commending the new owners on their expansion — growing the estate vineyard program from 70 acres to 960 acres and expanding the winemaking facility by 100,000 square feet. Justin produces around 150,000 cases of wine annually.

“I think it (the award) will really help Paso Robles gain recognition within the wine industry and have a further reach in terms of consumers, that they should really check out Paso Robles,” said winemaker Scott Shirley, who joined Justin in 2012 after 13 years in Napa Valley. “It does compare with the best wines in the world ... this is a great place to make wine.”

Located at 11680 Chimney Rock Road off Highway 46 West, the winery has an inn, tasting room and restaurant.

Justin is known for its luxury Bordeaux variety wines such as its Isosceles, Justification and cabernet sauvignon. Its cabernet sauvignon is the top-selling cabernet sauvignon priced more than $20 a bottle in California.

Justin, selected from five nominees for the award, will be featured in Wine Enthusiast Magazine’s annual “Best of Year” issue and honored at the annual Wine Star Awards gala in New York City on Jan. 25. Wine Enthusiast has been running the Wine Star Awards since 2000.

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