Cassaro Winery and Vineyard will soon need a larger case to showcase its award-winning wines, as bottles draped in colored ribbons with medals hanging proudly already line the bar in the Ovilla-based tasting room.

Though John Matthews, the owner of Cassaro Winery, has crafted wine for 30 years, he had not previously submitted his creations for judging until he had a location for wine-lovers to purchase it.

"We have people who come in the door who follow competitions," Matthews explained. "They come in and say, 'We want this wine,' and I'm like, 'You didn't even try it yet.' They are like, 'No, no, no, I don't have to try it, I follow the competitions, and if you won a medal, I want that wine.'"

"Some people only drink medal wine," he elaborated. "They will come in and buy six bottles or a case of wine without trying it."

Cassaro's Avante Rose Sangiovese was one of 12 wines recently selected as a blue ribbon champion and will be featured every day during the 2019 State Fair of Texas.

"Twelve wines in the entire state, that's huge," That was just a huge, huge honor," John expressed.

The 12 highly-rated wines will be showcased all 24 days of the State Fair in a dedicated tasting window for the Blue Ribbon Selection in the Wine Garden.

"Each year, more than 2 million visitors enjoy the State Fair of Texas," according to bigtex.com. "Approximately 12 percent of attendees stop by the State Fair Wine Garden to enjoy a glass of Texas wine."

Before Matthews elaborated on the other medals received, he noted that three more are on the way.

The Avante Rose Sangiovese has received the most awards with a silver medal in the Experienced Rose International Competition, which is the largest rose competition in the world. It also won a silver medal in the North American International Competition, "and we were against like 2,000 wineries in 24 countries."

The Reserve Tempranillo received a silver medal in the WineMaker International Wine Competition earlier this year. The Esate Sangiovese received silver and the Estate Tempranillo earned a bronze medal in the Texoma Non-Commercial Wine Competition.

For the Lone Star Wine Competition, the Avante Rose received a silver medal, the Breve White earned a bronze medal while the Terroso Tempranillo received a bronze medal.

Cassaro wines were also showcased at the Dallas International Film Festival and also served during the opening for Men and Black: International. Cassaro wines will be tasted at the Dallas Chocolate Festival as well.

FUTURE OF CASSARO

Significant advancements are also in store for the winery that opened its doors about four months ago. As the venue is booked for private events and future bridesmaids pester Matthews about setting a date, the decision to expand on the property came sooner than expected.

"We are already — maybe as soon as next week — breaking ground on expanding the winery," Matthews said. "Yeah, that quickly. We thought that we'd do it by the end of the year, we will be doing it in August."

Matthews also shared that a brand new wine will be served, Bianco, a white wine.

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Ashley Ford | @aford_news | 469-517-1450