Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars founder Warren Winiarski has pledged US$3.3m to help maintain and improve the world-leading collection of wine writing at the library of UC Davis in California.
Winiarski, a long-time supporter of the university’s library and a member of California’s hall of fame, made the pledge through the Winiarski Family Foundation, enabling the library to expand its collection and make it accessible around the world.
The library already has more than 30,000 wine books and collections of rare manuscripts, maps and other materials on wine, dating back to 1287.
It covers wine writers such as Hugh Johnson and Jancis Robinson MW OBE, authors, editors, journalists, critics and bloggers, as well as papers and books from the likes of Robert Mondavi.
Winiarski said: ‘My hope for this gift is that it will create a powerful resource for people who want to see how writers helped develop the wine industry itself, and how they influenced the aesthetics of wine.
‘Wine writers didn’t write just about the regions or types of wine. They gave winemakers the tools they needed to make wines better.’
Winiarski, who was the first winemaker at Robert Mondavi in 1966 and founded Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in Napa Valley, was a UC Davis student under viticulture and enology professor Maynard Amerine.