Celebrity Winemakers: Movie Stars, Musicians, and Athletes Who Do Wine on the Side
For the non-famous among us, the link between celebrities and wine usually involves a bottle of red, a girl’s night, a copy of Us Weekly, and the latest chick flick on DVD. But as more and more celebrities are turning to grapes and becoming their own winemakers, the degree of separation between our favorite stars and the wine we drink is getting smaller.
Some celebrities have become institutions in the winemaking world; take Francis Ford Coppola, for example. After buying a property in 1975 in Napa Valley, he has been in the business more than 40 years. Now, the director owns a Sonoma vineyard as well as the original Napa Valley property, named Inglenook after the original estate. (And the wines are nothing to scoff at; his Napa Valley wines recently swept several categories at the 2012 Decanter World Wine Awards.) Olivia Newton-John began her own wine label back in 1983, before Australian wines were getting their deserved recognition. And rocker Dave Matthews has brought his sustainable vision to his own vineyard, Blenheim Vineyards.
The winemakers of Hollywood include well-known ventures such as Drew Barrymore (who served her own wine at her engagement party), and Sting (who reportedly likes to sing to his grapes… we’ll let you sit with that one for a bit). And others are a bit more under the radar. Who knew that Brad Pitt was such a winemaker — with enough chops to plan to serve his own vintage at his upcoming wedding? And then there’s Lil Jon, who classed up his act with Little Jonathan Winery, but his wine endeavors have since disappeared from the headlines. Luckily, we think the world will be just fine without Lil Jon’s grapes.
But we should note that not all of these celebrities are getting down and dirty in the vineyards: Antonio Banderas, who made headlines with his line of Spanish wines, actually partnered with the family winery who produces it. Still, it’s nice to imagine a little Banderas wine-making action…
Find out which of your favorite celebrities have become bona fide winemakers — after all, we can dream of a Napa Valley getaway with Josh Groban, right?