America’s favorite pastime, baseball, has teamed up with American’s passion for wine, all for a good cause. Inspired by personal tragedies involving friends and family with cancer, the owners of VinLozano Imports have teamed up with Charity Hop to create wine labels featuring names and likenesses of Boston Red Sox players. This has culminated in Longball Vineyards with wines based on Manny Ramirez, Curt Shilling and Tim Wakefield. Each have lent their name to a label, with about 75% of the profits going to a charity of their choosing. The wines are all certified organic, and boast a fair wage certification for the vineyard workers.
Manny being Merlot 2005 Lontue Valley, Chile
Manny Ramirez has chosen the local Miami charity CHARLEE (Children Have All Rights, Legal, Educational an Emotional) to benefit from his wine. CHARLEE provides “therapeutic, residential, and supportive services to abused, abandoned, and neglected children within a safe environment in a community-based continuum of care.” www.charleeprogram.org
Schilling Schardonnay 2006 Chardonnay Lontue Valley, Chile
Curt Schilling wine supports his Curt’s Pitch for ALS, which he founded along with his wife, Shonda. Curt’s Pitch benefits The ALS Association Massachusetts Chapter, whose mission is to improve the quality of life for those living with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) and to support their families while aggressively funding research for a cure. www.curtspitch.org
Tim Wakefield’s Caberknuckle 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon Lontue Valley, Chile
Tim Wakefield’s charity of choice is Pitching in for Kids, a program dedicated to improving the lives of children across the New England region through sports-related events. www.pitchinginforkids.org
VinLozano Imports and Charity Hop plans to continue the program as a not-for-profit with other MLB and NFL players as well. As a Wine Enthusiast and Red Sox fan, this writer is looking forward to the “Timlin Tempranillo” for relief pitcher Mike Timlin, “Varitek Viognier” for catcher Jason Varitek and for David (Big Papi) Ortiz… “Big Papi Pinot Noir.”