This is sad. “Robert Mondavi died today”:http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/17/business/17mondavi.html?_r=1&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss&oref=slogin at 94. I just read and enjoyed his autobiography “Harvests of Joy” and another great book that tells the story of Napa Valley, “Napa: An American Eden”, in which Mondavi played a significant role. He was a great thing for the American wine industry, both technologically and in marketing. His story is an inspiring one: He was run out of his family’s wine business after a feud with his brother and, at the age of 52 when most people would have started to think about retiring, started his own winery and worked hard for many years to make great American wines that could compete at the level of French wines.
Gay and I visited Napa Valley in 1998 and rode our tandem through it, stopping at the Mondavi winery and snuck into the “Opus One”:http://www.opusonewinery.com/ winery for a memorable lunch on top of the beautiful winery. Hardly a month would go by when a bottle of Robert Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon wasn’t in our wine rack waiting to be drank. Cheers!