Sunday, September 20, 2009

Michael Mondavi at DRC: a short anecdote

This is heresay, so I'll never be able to use it in a print story. Hence, a blog tidbit.

Michael Mondavi was visiting Domaine Romanee-Conti a few years ago during harvest season. He happened to be carrying a thermometer -- don't you always have one? -- and he stuck it into a vat of fermenting Pinot Noir grapes.

The temperature was high, and Michael immediately sought out the winemaker, because cold fermentation is what everybody was taught in enology school to do with Pinot Noir. You've got a problem with this vat, Michael said. These grapes are so valuable, I'd hate to see them screwed up.

The winemaker disappeared into the cellar and reappeared a few minutes later with a 20-year-old bottle. Tell me, he said, as they sampled it: Did I screw this one up too?

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