The last time we checked in on this year's NBA Finals, rapper-turned-vintner E-40 was promising an unlimited supply of his Earl Stevens Selections Mangoscato wine to the roster of his beloved Golden State Warriors if they brought an NBA championship home to Oakland, Calif. Since that time, the Cleveland Cavaliers' Lebron James briefly made us think he really could win the NBA Finals all by himself, and the Warriors proved that tired old adage that our dad loves to cite: "defense wins championships." That, and the one-two 3-pointer punch of the Splash Brothers, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.
Appropriately, the Splash Brothers could be found splashing around with some bubbly after clenching the series, celebrating with more than 150 bottles of Mumm Napa Brut Prestige, just like their fellow champions across the Bay, the San Francisco Giants. “We are proud to be the sparkling wine of choice for the 2015 World Champion Golden State Warriors," Mumm Napa brand director Julie Galbraith told Unfiltered. "What better way to celebrate a world-class team than with our Mumm Napa Brut Prestige Napa Valley sparkling wine?" And what better way to spend an offseason than with an unlimited supply of Mangoscato? (Unless you were planning to defend that championship …)
Below the glitzy French Riviera resort town of St.-Tropez lie the caves of the local wine cooperative. And deep in the bowels of the cellars, there were the rumblings of a new wine being made, a rosé for the new vintage of Provence’s harvest of grapes and beachgoers. Mist, it would be called, a seemingly squeaky-clean acronym for Made in St.-Tropez. But plumb the German dictionary and you’ll find the Deutsch meaning of the word a little harder to digest: “dung,” “manure,” “crap.”
Germans were uncharacteristically dyspeptic about the choice of name, with one German-speaking former cooperative member taking to local papers to call it “an insult and a blasphemous name that will shock all Germans … This name works directly against the image of St.-Tropez that we all defend, namely a village welcoming all Europeans.” What makes this even more execrable is that the name appears alongside the visage of Saint Torpes of Pisa, the namesake of the town and patron saint of sailors. The coop member decided to wash his hands of the whole thing and resign, while Le Parisien also quoted a Briton, who quibbled that the English word “mist” for a pink wine just stinks in general.
If walls could talk, the winery at William Cole Vineyards would have some fascinating stories to tell, and the U.S. Department of the Interior has decided they want to listen. The government bureau has placed the 142-year-old stone winery on the National Register of Historic Places in recognition of its historical and architectural significance and California has followed suit by placing it on the California Register of Historical Resources. Other than being one of the first stone wineries in Napa Valley’s St. Helena and an early participant in California’s fledgling wine industry, the property also touts an intriguing narrative befitting a Hollywood movie.
Its tumultuous story began when John and Hannah Weinberger purchased land from Napa wine pioneers Charles and Carolina Krug in 1868. Within five years, they completed construction of a stone cellar and three-story building and lived for nine more years in marital, winemaking bliss … until John was murdered by a disgruntled employee.
By default, Hannah became the region’s first female vintner, and she kept the winery in operation until Prohibition closed its doors in 1920. For the next eight decades, the estate cycled through various families as a summer home until William and Jane Ballentine purchased it in 1999. The Ballentines took it upon themselves to become “stewards of the land” and immediately began restoring the property to the form the Weinbergers had originally intended. In 2004, they brought the ghost winery back to life and now produce Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. “It is an honor to be recognized by both the National and State Historic Registers," said William, whose name contributes half the winery's name, the other half of which comes from his son, Cole. "It has been our goal to preserve this true Napa Valley jewel.”
Walter Scheib, former White House chef and champion of healthy American cuisine, was found dead near a hiking trail in Taos, N.M. June 21. He was 61. In 1994, then–First Lady Hillary Clinton plucked the then–relatively unknown Scheib from Greenbrier Resort in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va., to serve as White House chef. Scheib ushered in a new culinary era at the president’s residence by focusing on light, low-fat fare made with high-quality ingredients. He spotlighted American wines by serving them to dignitaries from around the world at state dinners.
Outside of his official duties, he forged a strong relationship with the Clintons, giving Chelsea cooking lessons before she left for college. When Pres. George W. Bush took office, Scheib found it difficult to adhere to the simpler tastes of his new employers and was replaced in 2005. His relationship with the Clintons endured; he published a memoir in 2007 entitled White House Chef: Eleven Years, Two Presidents, One Kitchen, and dedicated it to Mrs. Clinton. In his post-White House years, he also started his own catering company, the American Chef, and contributed to various charities. He is survived by his two sons, Walter and Jim, and his father, Walter Scheib Jr.