Robert Mondavi: 1913-2008

Big news in the wine world – Robert Mondavi died today at 94. Say waht you want about Mondavi wines, he helped put Napa on the map. And helped slowly (ever so slowly) turn wine drinking in the US from elite and expensive activity to simple populist pleasure. From the Wine Spectator:

“To promote the marriage of food and wine, Mondavi and his wife,
Margrit Biever Mondavi, created the “Great Chefs” programs at their
Oakville winery in the 1970s. Each year, they hosted influential
culinary masters, such as Julia Child and Paul Bocuse, to cook and
experiment with different food and wine pairings.

But rather than limit wine to fine dining, Mondavi championed making
it a part of everyday life and of a healthy lifestyle. When wine came
under attack in the 1980s, Mondavi was a vocal critic of anti-alcohol
campaigns and advocated research into the benefits of moderate
consumption of wine.”

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