ASWA Visit with Margrit Mondavi
California, January 2012
Following a family tradition that dates back to the mid-1960s, on the afternoon of January 24th, 2012, Gordon Murchie, President Emeritus of the Atlantic Seaboard Wine Association (ASWA), and Anita Murchie, ASWA Board of Directors member, renewed their friendship with Margrit Mondavi in the private tasting room of the Mondavi Winery in Oakville (Napa), California. After tasting a 2006 Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon with Margrit Mondavi, Murchie presented two Virginia wines to her, a Barboursville 2006 Octagon and a 2008 Barrel Oak Petit Verdot. Left to right in the photo are Margrit Mondavi, Gordon & Anita Murchie.
It was in the latter half of the 1960s, shortly after Robert Mondavi inaugurated the now famous Oakville winery, that Gordon Murchie, then a U.S. Foreign Service Officer on home leave form Asia, had the opportunity of meeting Robert Mondavi. Even though Gordon, at that time, had no wine experience beyond that of an appreciative consumer, Mondavi, according to Gordon, strongly recommended, “Young man, you should become involved in the American wine industry.”
Who would have guessed, but following his retirement from the State Department in 1993, Gordon, who had already become active in the wine industry, immediately jumped in the industry full time, first as the Executive Director of the National Wine Coalition.
The Murchies started meeting with the Mondavis on an annual basis at wine events both on the east and west coasts. Good memories were shared at those meetings over mutual experiences in the wine industry, a passion held by both the Mondavis and the Murchies.
The ASWA ,known previously as the Vinifera Wine Growers Association (VWGA), presented Robert Mondavi a Distinguished Lifetime Achievement plaque in April of 2002 at “The Rise of American Wine Symposium,” held at the University of Virginia.