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Sorelle Paradiso, a California olive oil producer, was awarded Best In Show at the recent Las Vegas International Restaurant Show's Extra Virgin Olive Oil Competition. The competition, sponsored by the California Olive Oil Council (COOC), received a total of 48 entries, from the 2007 harvest and produced by COOC members. Sorelle Paradiso won top honors for its Extra Virgin Olive Oil which is made solely from Sevillano olives grown on their ranch in California's Central Valley.
The Las Vegas competition was judged in two sessions. Members of the COOC Taste Panel judged the preliminary session on January 24th and awarded Gold, Silver and Bronze medals to the entries. Then all 19 Gold Medal oils competed for 7 Double Gold Medals and the top prize of Best in Show which was awarded on stage at the Las Vegas Show. The final round was judged by 3 prestigious Las Vegas chefs: George Bargisen, Executive Chef of the Rio Hotel; Eric Damidot, Executive Chef of Caesars Palace; and Wolfgang Von Weiser, Executive Chef of the Bellagio Hotel.
Sorelle Paradiso Also Wins a Gold Medal for their Mission Blend Extra Virgin Olive Oil
In addition to winning Best in Show for their Sevillano Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Sorelle Paradiso also won a Gold Medal for their Mission Blend Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Abbie Scianamblo of Sorelle Paradiso also gave credit for both of these honors to Roberto Zecca, owner of Frantoio Ristorante & Olive Oil Company in Mill Valley where the oil was pressed.
"We look at our olive oil venture as a celebration of families," said Ms. Scianamblo. "My father Michael became interested in growing olives after visiting his family's village in the Italian region of Puglia, and Roberto honors his Tuscan roots by making wonderful olive oil here in the U.S. Even the company name, Sorelle Paradiso (meaning the Paradiso Sisters) refers to my father's aunts who brought their Italian traditions to the U.S. in the early 1900s."
The Scianamblo Family has a 30-year history of farming olives in California but just recently began to produce oil in addition to selling table olives. The olive ranch consists of over 6,000 trees, most of which are the Sevillano variety; the olive ranch transitioned to organic 8 years ago. The mill at Frantoio Ristorante is also certified for organic production, making Sorelle Paradiso one of just a handful of California oils that is certified organic.
Frantoio Ristorante, in addition to being honored for its menu, has made award-winning olive oil since 1995 for its own label as well as other producers in northern California. The state-of-the-art mill, with its giant granite wheels, is visible from the restaurant's dining room, and the proprietor's oil is poured for all diners to enjoy.
Sorelle Paradiso's award-winning extra virgin olive oils are available at select retail stores or via their website www.sorelleparadiso.com. Further information about Frantoio Ristorante & Olive Oil Company can be found at its website www.frantoio.com.
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