Sunday, March 3, 2013
Grgich Birthday Cause to Open Some 1972 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay!
There's a $295 a plate dinner, parties around the country, and best of all, as far as I'm concerned, a trade tasting and luncheon at the winery where a bottle of his pivotal Chardonnay will be tasted. I've got my invite!
In the meantime, Chateau Montelena made headlines last week by being named to the National Register of Historic Places. It's made history twice - once under the leadership of Alfred Tubbs (1888-1920) who brought high standards to the winemaking operations there, and again in the 1970s when Grgich was the winemaker there and Jim Barrett owned the winery.
Grgich later left to start his own winery.
Bo Barrett's father Jim Barrett bought the Montelena winery in 1972 and it has remained in the family, after a 2008 deal with potential French buyers soured. (At about the same time, the other Paris Tasting winery Stag's Leap Wine Cellars was sold to American-Italian winery partners in 2007 for $185 million when its owner Warren Winiarski retired).
If you want to see some of the Tasting of Paris history first hand in Napa, I have launched a Vayable.com Organic Wine Adventures tour of Napa Valley that visits the wineries of the major players and vineyards where the grapes come from. You can find details here.
Both Grgich and Winiarski have been honored as members of the Vintners Hall of Fame.