Reflecting a lifetime devoted to the joy of wine, the David and Judy Breitstein Wine Book Collection was dedicated Monday at its new home, the St. Helena headquarters of the Napa Valley Vintners trade organization.
The Breitsteins started the collection in the late 1960s, during the early days of California’s wine renaissance. It captures stories of local wine icons and the unique attributes that helped place Napa Valley and California on the world stage of fine winemaking.
Judy and David Breitstein were key contributors to this movement as early supporters of California wines for their Los Angeles store, the Duke of Bourbon (the Breitsteins are now retired). They began traveling regularly to Napa Valley in 1969, often inspired by reading a chapter or two in one of their books about a certain wine or winemaker that piqued their curiosity.
“Before the Internet, before Robert Parker or the Wine Spectator, we used books to educate ourselves and pass thoughtful information to our customers,” noted David Breitstein. “Judy and I have deep affection for these books and, looking to the future, trust they will be opened and treasured in their new home at the NVV.”
Michael Honig, chairman of the NVV Board of Directors and president of Honig Vineyard & Winery, accepted the collection on behalf of the 550 members of the NVV. “We are grateful to David and Judy, not only for their donation of this special collection, but for their longtime support of our industry and especially the Napa Valley,” said Honig.
The David and Judy Breitstein Wine Book Collection consists of nearly 350 volumes that are available as a resource for NVV members and the wine trade. For information or to schedule an appointment to view books from the collection, contact the NVV at 707-963-3388.