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Reputation rehab for Justin Winery after tree-clearing controversy




JUSTIN Vineyards & Winery/Landmark Vineyards on display at the Southern Divinity Dinner during the 2015 Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival.
JUSTIN Vineyards & Winery/Landmark Vineyards on display at the Southern Divinity Dinner during the 2015 Food Network & Cooking Channel South Beach Wine & Food Festival.
Sergi Alexander/Getty Images for SBWFF

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A fight local to California's central coast wine country has a large vintner attempting to repair its reputation.

Justin Winery - last year named the nation's best winery by Wine Enthusiast magazine - is in trouble after legally cutting down hundreds of old oak trees on its property to make room for more vineyards.

Concerned residents and some competitors say the oak groves are iconic for Paso Robles, which takes its name from the Spanish for oak pass. The vineyards owners say the controversy is being overblown, deters from their good record within the community, plus they are promising to plant 5,000 new oak trees.

Could a boycott initiated by a handful of local restaurants expand? What are the best ways for the company to deal with the complaints?

Guest:

Doug Elmets, President of Elmets Communications - public affairs consultants in Sacramento