Uncorkings 5/17/10

Top industry stories of the week.

Filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola's vision of a family-friendly winery is coming into focus in northern Sonoma County, where construction workers are racing to meet a July 4 opening deadline and a hiring blitz is set to begin next week. For more information, click here

Fine wine hits record as luxury auctions boom. More here.

Japanese video game CEO Kenzo Tsujimoto opened a new Napa Valley winery, Kenzo Estate, after 20 years of preparation and $100 million of investment. The venue, designed by prominent winery architect Howard Backen, offers wines created by Screaming Eagle’s Heidi Barrett and vineyard manager David Abreu, and food created by the French Laundry's Thomas Keller.

The market for fine wine appears particularly robust in America, according to statistics released at the Fine Wine 2010 conference in Ribera del Duero, Spain. The U.S. market is one of the few in the world where the drinking population and per capita drinking are increasing.

Owens-Illinois, the world’s largest manufacturer of glass containers, is launching its lightest-ever North American wine bottle, which at 11.6 ounces is up to 27% lighter than similar wine bottles, the company says.

Rogue Spirits’ Oregon Single Malt Whiskey was selected by a Panel of Judges from the American Distilling Institute as the Gold Medal Winner in the Single Malt category.

Collavini Winery announced that it will continue to donate 50 cents for every bottle of Collavini wine sold in 2010 to Operation Heroes & Hounds.

Diageo confirmed it is restructuring its U.S. wine operations, complete with job cuts and other "fundamental changes," to make it a more nimble company.

The California Wine Institute awarded Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi its annual leadership award during a week of lobbying in Washington DC.

Rick Tigner, president of Jackson Family Wines sales and distribution, was promoted to president of Jackson Family Enterprises.

Wine expert Bobby Lee Lawrence, 72, also known as the Southwest Wine Guy, was killed Sunday in an auto accident in Arizona.


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