rock’n’rollers are the new terroirists

Forget clothing lines, restaurants, perfumes… wine is the new celebrity trend.

The trend started becoming apparent to me while browsing through Tool’s press kit for 10000 Days. Part of the literature included a link to – a vineyard belonging to frontman, Maynard James Keenan.

It struck me as fairly odd that a member of Tool (or any band) would run a vineyard but a visit to the site corrected that notion. Informed by sacred geometry and ancient symbolism (caduceus is the winged staff with two snakes wrapped around it – yes, like on the Snakes on a Plane poster, I’m trying to be serious here – visit the wiki for more details) , the venture conveys a spiritual depth and is shrouded in that feeling of “I’ll never get it” – exactly what one expects from a member of Tool. BTW – you can only access the wine at the vineyard in Arizona – nothing is available via mail order. Warning: there are pictures of Maynard smiling at this site.

So Maynard’s terroirism was a bit off-putting indeed. BUT the most shocking celebrity terroirist I know of is Vince Neil. Yes, that Vince Neil! Motely Crue’s Vince Neil. Now, how fucking bizarre is that? A vineyard from a rock legend who at one time, regularly & drunkenly, slathered his dick in egg burrito to hide the scent of other women. And I’m supposed to believe this same man is now a wine afficionado? – I guess it would be fair to say I’m skeptical but I’d sure love to meet the investors – they’re either cracked or in possession of the greatest senses of humor ever.

The liner notes from Pink’s latest CD reference wine so I’m guessing it won’t be long until she’s growing her own grapes.

Francis Ford Coppola has been involved with wine-making forever and a couple years ago he started making wine for George Lucas – a Lucas Skywalker Ranch chardonnay and a merlot.

Coppola’s adventures in wine inspired Dan Ackroyd to invest in vineyards in the Niagara region and he’ll soon be promoting his juice in the US and through the HOB restaurant chain.

Then there’s Sting – Mr. Spiritman himself has some land in Tuscany (probably close to one of his many ‘humble’ estates) and makes a private label chianti called I Serrestori.

So of course, his pally pal Madge follows suit – “the Madonna Wine Collection will feature photos of the singer from her recently released CD Confessions on a Dance Floor. The line-up will include Californian cabernet sauvignon, pinot grigio and a de-alcoholized tipple called UnWine.”

I’m just hoping her wine can help me with my yoga practise.

Then we have Olivia Newton-John who runs the Koala Blue label of Down Under wines (incidentally, the name was originally applied to her since-failed clothing line). Tsk. tsk.

How about Bob Dylan? Yup, him too.

Seventies icon Bob Dylan has lent his image and the name of his 1974 album Planet Waves to an Italian red wine, since the singer has a passion for premium Italian vino. The winemaker, Antonio Terni from Le Marche, says he tried to make a wine that reflects both sides of Dylan’s character: “Angular, difficult and unpredictable like montepulciano, yet generous and friendly like merlot.” The back label reads: “You may call it destiny, you may call it coincidence, you may call it a simple twist of fate. What pushed two guys from opposite corners of the world to put their names on a bottle of Italian red wine? Destiny? Fate? Coincidence?” (Another possible answer: marketing. It sells for about $75.) There’s also an even more expensive wine called Visions of J, after Dylan’s song “Visions of Johanna.”

Well at least he’s off the banks…

Much of the info above is sourced from the Nat Decants newsletter which you can subscribe to at:

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