What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

Tasting notes, varietals, grapes - anything related to wine
Message
Author
User avatar
Anton D
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 30226
Joined: October 17th, 2013, 11:25 am
Location: Chico, CA

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#51 Post by Anton D » May 23rd, 2016, 9:58 am

My sister's husband's father.

He was a wonderful old Italian guy, from the "old country."

He lived with my sis and bro in law in a big old farmhouse in Reno, and they had a fully underground cellar beneath the basement that he used to make wine. He'd go to Napa to search for grapes, then come home and make his magic. I used to help punch the caps and do things a 5 or 6 year old could do. I loved the smell so much, it still lingers in my memory.

I would get tiny tastes at different parts of the process, but I was too young to like it.

He made grappa, too. Yuck to a little palate! It tasted like fire.

I remember when he made his 1966, because all the grown ups went ape for it. They still talk about his '66.

He was nice, which is what really made the imprint about wine and pleasantness.

Then, I'd follow him around the place and he showed me about irrigating fields via ditches and where to block the canal with water to send water down different rows, etc. They lived along the Truckee River, so lots of time fishing, making bike trails in the land fill areas, exploring caves (storm drains,) all sorts of fun stuff.

He even trained their Irish Setter to flip up the hems of womens' dresses. I only mention it because it was funny at the time to a 6 year old watching a bunch of 80 year old guys chuckle and shoot ouzo. I do not condone this type of sexist behavior.

He was just a funny mischievous old guy. I pour wine on the floor of my cellar every once in a while because it reminds me of the rock and wine smell from his great liile hidden winery.
Anton Dotson

What is man, when you come to think upon him, but a minutely set, ingenious machine for turning, with infinite artfulness, the fine red wine of Shiraz into urine?

Sean Devaney
Posts: 3301
Joined: June 25th, 2009, 5:11 pm

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#52 Post by Sean Devaney » May 23rd, 2016, 10:17 am

The figure who started me on my wine journey and my first mentor was John Corzoa. While going to college I got a holiday season job at a chain liquor store. I was hired early in the season so when others came aboard they had me stocking the shelves, usually beer and spirits but sometimes wine. one day while stocking some German wines I noticed that three of a producers wines were priced the same but the labels were subtly different and asked John if they should be priced the same? Sure enough the Kabinett, Auslese & TBA should have different prices. John asked the manager that when I was off the cash register that I work the wine section. After the season I was kept on and John invited me to the stores weekly Wednesday evening tasting were various wholesalers would pour their samples and started to educate me on wine. He is the one who started me down my vinous path and I am forever grateful. I still remember the first bottle I ever bought on his recommendation: 1976 Christian Brothers Chateau Mont La Salle Napa Cabernet Sauvignon in 1983. [cheers.gif] John.

Mike DiSalvo
Posts: 1896
Joined: August 2nd, 2011, 12:03 pm
Location: Columbus, OH

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#53 Post by Mike DiSalvo » May 23rd, 2016, 10:48 am

Robert Mondavi (surprised he hasn't been mentioned previously) and would add Piero Antinori.

And, The Wine Spectator message boards in the last 1990's was a great resource and opened my knowledge base to what people were drinking, collecting and the prices of acquisition.

User avatar
Anton D
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 30226
Joined: October 17th, 2013, 11:25 am
Location: Chico, CA

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#54 Post by Anton D » May 23rd, 2016, 10:52 am

I will add whoever the person was in charge of the blind tasting articles in the SF Chron. in the late 70's and early '80s.

We used to go to the store to replicate their line ups and compare.
Anton Dotson

What is man, when you come to think upon him, but a minutely set, ingenious machine for turning, with infinite artfulness, the fine red wine of Shiraz into urine?

User avatar
Kevin Porter
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 2065
Joined: April 29th, 2009, 11:17 am
Location: Near Philadelphia

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#55 Post by Kevin Porter » May 23rd, 2016, 11:07 am

Mark Squires, as conversations on the eBob board taught me a great deal, including that I no longer trusted Parker's palate. Todd French and Doghead as well, as most of my education is from the boreds (tip of the hat to another influence).

User avatar
Nick Ellis
Posts: 199
Joined: January 6th, 2016, 6:43 am

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#56 Post by Nick Ellis » May 23rd, 2016, 11:07 am

First, Kermit Lynch, who in addition to importing some amazing stuff, romanticized the world of wine in his "Adventures" book.

Second, Rick from Rick's Wine & Beverage in Alexandria, VA. He held free tastings every weekend, often with wines way above my pay grade. He also encouraged exploration of esoteric and little known regions and producers.

User avatar
John S
Posts: 747
Joined: May 29th, 2009, 11:45 am
Location: Chapel Hill, NC

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#57 Post by John S » May 23rd, 2016, 12:00 pm

I will admit it was Parker back in the early 90s for me. Plus many internet wino chat boards of the past including alt.food.wine and WLDG back in their haydays.

The internet wino community has really been at the forefront probably since the 90s. Maybe before if you include Prodigy/AOL which were before my time. The main go to site for sharing wine info has changed hands many times but it is always always pretty similar in terms of characters, new information, and even some of the same old dudes.
John Sprow

User avatar
H Wallace Jr
BerserkerBusiness
BerserkerBusiness
Posts: 1882
Joined: January 29th, 2009, 7:19 pm
Location: Napa, CA

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#58 Post by H Wallace Jr » May 27th, 2016, 7:38 am

There are a number of people- importers, winemakers, writers, somms, etc. but before figuring out any of that, the people that really got me going on this journey were board members Bob Fleming, Don Cornutt, and the whole ATL crew. Their willingness to share knowledge, passion, bottles, time, etc., changed everything for me.

Thank you Don, Bob, and ATL!
Hardy Wallace itb
Dirty and Rowdy Family Winery: Mourvèdre and Semillon Together at Last

k s h i n
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 3795
Joined: August 17th, 2009, 1:23 pm

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#59 Post by k s h i n » May 27th, 2016, 11:58 am

Robert Parker.
Kevin
ITB - I may be offering some of the wines that I drink and post TNs on.

Heath Richardson
Posts: 131
Joined: October 2nd, 2015, 5:06 pm
Location: Houston

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#60 Post by Heath Richardson » May 27th, 2016, 12:15 pm

I always liked and respected Parker , but I'm going to say my old boss Joe. Before meeting him and going to work for him , higher end Cali cab was the pinnacle of my wine experience as it was mostly what I had been exposed to. He introduced me to 1961 and 1982 Bordeaux , and Grand cru Burgs from '61 , and '59. I'd say that easily had a larger impact on me than reading someone elses words.

Barry P
Posts: 466
Joined: June 18th, 2009, 9:00 am

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#61 Post by Barry P » May 27th, 2016, 12:24 pm

My friend's Dad, who kindly opened his cellar to me on more than one occasion and turned me on to Rhone with a 78 La Chappelle and a 78 Rayas. I really hadn't had anything like that before (or after).
--B@rry Per$hkØw

User avatar
Matt Mauldin
GCC Member
GCC Member
Posts: 1160
Joined: May 26th, 2010, 3:32 pm
Location: Goleta, CA

What wine figure has had the biggest impact on you?

#62 Post by Matt Mauldin » May 27th, 2016, 1:37 pm

For me, it was the late Frank Doherty, who was the sales education/trainer at Empire Distributors in Atlanta. I started my career there as a retail spirits salesperson, left the business for a couple of years, and then returned as a bar/restaurant salesperson. I had to take Frank's training class when I was rehired- it was just him and I all week, and he awakened my interest in wine. Michael Bryant at Atlanta Wine School after that.

Of more widely-known people, definitely Karen MacNeil. George Taber's Judgement of Paris book. Kevin Zraly- Windows on the World.

The wineries and wine regions I've been fortunate enough to visit. I've also been turned on to a tremendous amount of wine information here at WB.

Industry folks and colleagues since moving to California. I spent time with Joe Davis, Chris Bratcher and Larry Schaffer working part-time. And definitely the winemaking team at Zaca Mesa- Eric Mohseni and Kristin Bryden.
ITB

Post Reply

Return to “Wine Talk”