Women Pioneers in Wine

Trailblazing women and the wine they made famous

 


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Merry Edwards

Another successful female coming from California, Merry Edwards, the eponymous owner of Merry Edwards Winery in the Russian River Valley, has had her share of successes and obstacles during her career. Starting as an amateur making The Merry Vintners wines during college, she turned her love for wine into a successful career. An early-believer in clonal variation, she studied and tested different clones of Chardonnay in an effort to prove her hypothesis on the differences between clones of the same varietal. She was the founding winemaker for Matanzas Creek until 1984, and after a few career setbacks during the 1980s, she went on to found her own winery with help from her family in 1997, where she has been producing wine ever since.
 

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Comments

  • Great story, though I was surprised not to see, among these amazing women, any mention of the eminently amazing Chiara Lungarotti and Teresa Severini of Lungarotti winery, Torgiano, Umbria.

    Mar 14, 2012 at 1:11 PM


  • Snooth User: Ozrr
    184260 9

    Clarification: Zelma Long was one of the first women to study enology and viticulture at U.C. Davis when she enrolled for her Master's studies in '68, not one of the first women to attend UC Davis. UCD was a coed campus at the time Zelma enrolled.

    Mar 14, 2012 at 1:40 PM


  • Snooth User: syoung51
    176730 5

    Alessia, Albiera and Allegra Antinori might be worth mentioning - they have advanced the family name beyond all expectations!!!

    Mar 14, 2012 at 2:07 PM


  • Snooth User: dmcker
    Hand of Snooth
    125836 7,424

    You should've included Anne Gros in Burgundy and the Minervois, too. Many others could be named but she should be pretty high up the list.

    Mar 14, 2012 at 3:18 PM


  • I'm beginning to see how daunting a task Ms. Zapel was up against, reducing to a workable size the list of so many eminent women in wine. Good work, in any case.

    Mar 14, 2012 at 3:26 PM


  • I would like to add Patrizia Lamborghini's name to this list. She inherited her father, Ferruccio Lamborghini's winery in Umbria after he passed away and took it to a whole new level. She brought in Dr Riccardo Cotarella, one of Europe's top enologists and completely redid the vineyards, replacing the white varietals with Sangiovese and Merlot. She making only red wines now, some of the best in the region.

    Mar 15, 2012 at 5:44 PM


  • Seems to me that an article might be written solely on the women of Italian wine.

    Mar 15, 2012 at 7:45 PM


  • Snooth User: chiefpace
    274075 2

    I think that Colette, Catherine and Laurence Faller of Domaine Weinbach deserve a mention. Not only for producing a remarkable Reisling but for keeping the winery in the family after the death of Colette's husband Theo. They have improved the winery and produce a great line of wine. I had the Grand Cru Schlossberg at the Inn at Little Washington and fell immediately in love with it.

    Mar 16, 2012 at 6:37 PM


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