The latest entrants into the Vintners Hall of Fame have been announced, and this esteemed bunch includes a local connection. Dr. Carole Meredith, a former professor at UC Davis' department of viticulture and enology, is among the honorees for her work in grape genetics. She utilized DNA methods to discover the origins of some of our most favorite wine grapes: cabernet sauvignon, syrah, chardonnay and zinfandel. Dr. Meredith is also the co-owner of Lagier-Meredith, a Napa winery that specializes in an especially spicy version of syrah.
The other honorees include: Gerald Asher (Gourmet magazine), Warren Winiarski (Stag's Leap Wine Cellars), Jess Jackson (Kendall-Jackson Estates), Justin Meyer (co-founder of Silver Oak), and Jack and Jamie Davies (founders of Schramsberg Vineyards). Frederick and Jacob Beringer - founders of Beringer Winery - received this year's Vintners Hall of Fame "Pioneer" award. Inductions, coupled with some very swanky food and wine events, will be held on March 13th and 14th at St. Helena's Culinary Institute of America at Greystone.
The nominating committee included two local notables: Mike Dunne, the Bee's recently departed food and wine editor; and grocer/gourmand Darrell Corti, who was a 2008 inductee of the Vintners Hall of Fame.