Warren Winiarski featured in Judgment of Paris 40th Anniversary Celebrations

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Paul Wagner
Balzac Communications
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Email: pwagner@balzac.com
Warren Winiarski featured in Judgment of Paris 40th Anniversary Celebrations

National and regional events highlight the occasion

 Napa, CA (May 24, 2016) –  Napa Valley winemaker Warren Winiarski, who made the Cabernet Sauvignon that won the great Paris Tasting in 1976, helped commemorate that historic event by sponsoring the Smithsonian’s Judgment of Paris Fortieth Anniversary Dinner on May 17, 2016 in Washington, D.C., at the National Museum of American History. The dinner was the first time that all of the key participants were at the same commemorative event: wine expert Steven Spurrier, author George Taber, winemaker Warren Winiarski and representatives from Chateau Montelena, Grgich Hills Estate and Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars.

Congressman Mike Thompson from Napa Valley attended the Winemakers’ Dinner May 17 at the Smithsonian’s National American History Museum, and along with Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi, presented a Congressional Record and Resolution on Wednesday, May 18 at the Cannon Hall Building in Washington, D.C. On Friday, May 13, Governor Brown issued a Proclamation declaring May 24, 2016 as “Judgment of Paris Day” in the state of California.

A commemorative celebration will be held at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars Tuesday, May 24 with Mr. Winiarski and invited guests from around the country.

“As the grandson of immigrants, I am honored to be a part of these celebrations,” says Winiarski. “The National Museum of American History captures what it is to be American, from history and science to artifact and culture. That a bottle of wine I made is part of the museum’s collection is the highest of honors. I am delighted to support their work in preserving and celebrating American history.”

In May of 1976, Steven Spurrier invited journalist George Taber to observe as some of the top wine experts in France tasted through some of the best red wines of Bordeaux and California at the InterContinental Hotel in Paris. When Warren Winiarski’s Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon came out on top, Taber wrote an article that was published in Time magazine, first to national and then international attention.

A bottle of Winiarski’s award-winning 1973 S.L.V. Cabernet Sauvignon wine is now on display in the museum’s “FOOD: Transforming the American Table 1950-2000” exhibition. In its November 2013 issue, Smithsonian magazine included this bottle as one of the “101 Objects That Made America.” Other items chosen for this historic list included Neil Armstrong’s space suit, Abraham Lincoln’s top hat, Charles Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis, and Lewis and Clark’s compass. History-making, indeed.

The Judgment of Paris, as it came to be known, forever established the Napa Valley on the world stage, and inspired the hopes and dreams of an entire generation of California winemakers.

With a bottle of his wine in the permanent collections of the National Museum of American History, and his name and face among the legendary leaders in the Culinary Institute of America’s Vintners Hall of Fame, Winiarski has every right to be proud of his accomplishments. But that idea brings a smile to Winiarski. “You know, I don’t think any of us in that Hall of Fame were ever motivated by the thought that we were going to win some kind of honor or recognition. We were just passionate about wine on its own terms. We were trying to make beautiful and great wine, and in love with that idea, we gave it our lives.”

About Warren Winiarski

Warren Winiarski played an integral role in the creation of the 1968 Agricultural Preserve Act in Napa County. He was inducted into the California Vintners Hall of Fame at The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in 2009. Winiarski sold Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in 2007 and continues his passion for greatness in grapes and wine at his Arcadia Vineyard in Napa Valley. He oversees the Winiarski Family Foundation, and as part of the history of California winemaking, he communicates his philosophy in speaking engagements and his writing. For the past fourteen years Winiarski has shared his love of literature and the classics at his alma mater, with participants from around the world, by leading courses in the St. John’s College Summer Classics program.

If you’d like to interview Warren Winiarski please contact: Joanne Lee, Arcadia Vineyards, 707-224-8822 or joanne@wminapa.com. Photos available upon request.