Business

Paso Pinot & Paella Festival adds new seminar, tasting event

Doug Kruse,owner of Jack Creek Cellars, pours a glass of pinot at the 2013 Pinot & Paella Festival.
Doug Kruse,owner of Jack Creek Cellars, pours a glass of pinot at the 2013 Pinot & Paella Festival. The Tribune

The Paso Pinot & Paella Festival, started 13 years ago to bring recognition to Paso Robles pinot noir, is getting back to its roots with a new educational component.

A seminar and tasting on June 4 will explore pinots from five of Paso Robles’ sub-American Viticultural Areas, with the winemakers discussing the characteristics, advantages and challenges of each district.

While the festival, with local chefs cooking up huge pans of paella over open barbecues, is a crowd-pleaser, “We wanted to bring the focus back to pinot noir with a more educational opportunity for people to enjoy,” said Heather Goodman, tasting room and wine club manager at Windward Vineyard, which pioneered the event.

Tickets for the seminar are $40 and separate from the nearly sold-out festival that follows on June 5 at Templeton Community Park, with 15 local chefs, 20 pinot producers and the Spanish beats of guitar group Incendio.

Since its start, the festival has raised more than $300,000 for the Paso Robles Youth Arts Foundation and other local youth arts groups.

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