April 14, 1994 |
The eyes beneath those formidable brows were deep-set, intense--and, at the moment, angry. It was 1981 and I was judging Pinot Noirs at the Sonoma County Harvest Fair wine competition. Beside me was the man with the deep-set eyes, legendary winemaker Andre Tchelistcheff, who died April 5 at age 92. We were part of a five-person panel. Voting on wine No. 8, Andre firmly said: "Gold medal!" I concurred. The other panelists voted no award, so the wine was discarded.
November 16, 1986 |
Andre Tchelistcheff is one of the world's most revered and respected wine makers; he's received virtually every award the wine world has to offer. In September, he was honored at a dinner commemorating his 20 years as enological consultant to Washington state's Chateau Ste. Michelle--the most outstanding winery of the Pacific Northwest--and the 10th anniversary of the opening of the winery's handsome facilities in Woodinville, near Seattle. And though he'll turn 85 on Dec.
October 31, 1991 |
Andre Tchelistcheff once got a call from tire fortune heir Brooks Firestone, who said he wanted to start a winery. "Good," said Tchelistcheff. "How much money have you got to lose?" It wasn't the first time he'd tried to dissuade a would-be winemaker. In the '40s, the late Fred McCrea, a retired advertising man, asked Tchelistcheff to help him plant a property.
October 23, 1986
The 1986 wine-grape harvest and crush, completed this week, weighed in at 2.7 million tons, about 4% less than last year. But what the crop lacked in numbers it apparently made up for in quality, said the Wine Institute, a trade group. The growing season got off to a mid-winter start, thanks to an unseasonal warm spell, then cooled off to stretch out the growth and finally ended in August--the earliest finish that many old-timers could recall.
July 16, 1995 |
DREAMS OF THE VALLEY: A Portrait of the Napa Valley by Cheryll Aimee Barron (Scribner: $25; 317 pp.). If you take travel books on faith--especially literary works that profess to illuminate the soul of another culture--consider picking up this volume as a necessary corrective. "Dreams of the Valley" is probably as accurate as the typical travel book, but reading it is like getting a tour of one's back yard by someone who's just moved to town.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 13, 1998 |
Maynard A. Amerine, a virtual textbook on winemaking and a powerful force in guiding the California wine industry's recovery from Prohibition, has died. He was 86. Amerine, who suffered from Alzheimer's disease, died Wednesday night at his home in St. Helena in the Napa Valley. He was a founder and later chairman of the department of viticulture and oenology at UC Davis, which became known worldwide as a wine research center.