RUTHERFORD, Calif., Aug. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Paying tribute to the Russian
emigre whose delicate palate and technical expertise are credited for putting
California on the map of the world's best wine-producing regions, Beaulieu
Vineyard today unveiled a statue of Andre Tchelistcheff at a ceremony held at
the Culinary Institute of America, Greystone, in St. Helena.
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20020806/NYTU053 )
Presiding at the unveiling was Joel Aiken, vice president of winemaking at
Beaulieu Vineyard. Among the speakers were Dorothy Tchelistcheff, Andre's
widow, John DeLuca, President of the California Wine Institute and spokesman
for the state's wine industry, its wineries and winegrowers, as well as Napa
Valley Congressman Mike Thompson, member of the House Agriculture Committee
and co-founder and co-chair of the Congressional Wine Caucus. Additional
remarks were offered by a number of Andre's former students.
The Napa Valley Symphony provided musical entertainment, with special
performances by members of the Russian National Orchestra and the San
Beaulieu Vineyard (BV) also released the new 2000 "Maestro" Pinot Noir, a
limited edition wine, made in honor of Tchelistcheff, the "father of
California winemaking." Tchelistcheff's experience as an enologist, his
ability to communicate and his happiness among the vines of his adopted home,
the Napa Valley, gained him the affectionate title of "Maestro."
"As winemakers, we are all indebted to Andre Tchelistcheff for his passion
for creating world-class wine, for his great sensitivity and for his
willingness to chart a new course that many of America's most talented
winemakers are still on right here in California," said Joel Aiken, who side
by side with Tchelistcheff created new BV wines and the future of the winery.
"The wines he produced at Beaulieu Vineyard became the stuff of legends and
the wines of Presidents."
As a highlight of the unveiling event, BV presented its prestigious
Maestro Award, named in honor of Andre, to Dorothy Tchelistcheff. The Maestro
Award is given by BV "for distinguished service and outstanding contributions
to the American wine industry," and in the case of this year's recipient, for
her "love and devotion to the Maestro."
From 1938 to 1973, while at BV, Tchelistcheff revolutionized winemaking in
the Napa Valley and the world by demonstrating that sound hygiene affected the
final quality of wine, something unrecognized by vintners at the time. He
became a friend and mentor to many of Napa Valley's farmers and winemakers,
offering technical services and guidance to struggling wine producers.
At the event, Dorothy Tchelistcheff unveiled a bronze statue of her
husband, created by world-renowned sculptor William Behrends, whose work
includes the monumental-scale bronze statue of baseball legend Willie Mays
that stands at the entrance to Pacific Bell Park in downtown San Francisco.
The statue of Andre will stand on the main floor of the Culinary Institute for
12-18 months before it is moved to its permanent home at BV.
The unveiling took place at an early evening reception at the Culinary
Institute of America. The debut of the 2000 "Maestro" Pinot Noir took place
at a dinner at the CIA immediately after the unveiling ceremony. BV released
just 300 cases of this commemorative wine, all in magnums (1.5L). Each bottle
will sell for $100, one dollar for every year since the birth of Andre
Players from the Russian National Orchestra performed with the Napa Valley
Symphony in honor of a fellow countryman. Tchelistcheff was born to a noble
family in Moscow on December 7, 1901. He studied zoology, physiology,
chemistry and other subjects in Czechoslovakia and at both the Pasteur
Institute and the Institut National Agronomique in Paris. He emigrated to the
U.S. in 1938 and died in 1994.
Just an hour's drive from San Francisco, Beaulieu Vineyard is located in
the town of Rutherford in the heart of the Napa Valley. Beaulieu Vineyard is
one of California's oldest and most prestigious wine producers. Founded in
1900 by French immigrant Georges de Latour, BV has earned its place of
distinction among the finest wines in the world.
Diageo Chateau & Estate Wines, a division of Diageo North America, with
principal offices in Napa, California, and New York City, produces and markets
the wines of Beaulieu Vineyard, Sterling Vineyards, Sterling Vintner's
Collection, Blossom Hill and The Monterey Vineyard. The company is the
exclusive US importer of Barton & Guestier wines and is the largest importer
of classified Bordeaux in the US. The selection is completed by F.E. Trimbach
wines from Alsace, a collection of Burgundy estate-bottled wines and several
other European wines. Dedicated craftsmanship is the guiding principal for
all our wineries which lies at the center of our commitment to producing and
selling wines of exceptional quality.
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SOURCE Beaulieu Vineyard