Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Walk #292: A Scab Visit to Charles Krug...

Aching from four days of hard work, I walked to Charles Krug Winery.

This Winery was the first one in California. Started in 1861, it became quite famous when the Mondavi Family took over in the 1890's. The eldest Mondavi bought the place after moving from Minnesota. Family feuds and intrigue plague this family enterprise. It became a battle of two sons: Peter, who retained the Charles Krug Winery (and at 95 years of age still lives on the property); and Robert, who split with his brother and founded the billion dollar enterprise of Charles Mondavi Wineries. Word has it they didn't talk to each other very much.

Blood is thinner than Wine.

I hesitated to visit Charles Krug due to its shameful breaking of a contract with the United Farm Workers a few years ago. Still, I wanted to see some history and the historic buildings.

I flash my hospital badge and get a free tasting. A couple from Minnesota share the tasting bar with me. They are from Duluth (a city that I lived in for a couple of tortured years). We talk about Duluth. They get the premium tasting; I get the non-premium (albeit free) tasting.

The wine is good. The person pouring the wine is knowledgeable and friendly. As is my custom, I buy a bottle in exchange for the free tasting. Then, I ask THE QUESTION:

"How are your labor problems?"

The Server mumbles: "Oh they were done eight or nine years ago; things are good now". (Actually, it was in 2006 that the Union was fired from the grounds, and36 loyal employees--some with thirty years of experience--were put out to pasture. )

The Server walks away quickly. This is not question that is welcome at this Winery. The Minnesota couple had not heard of the firing of the UFW. Nor did they care.

Back in my room, the Zinfandel didn't taste as good as it did in the winery. I wish I hadn't purchased it. It tasted like shameful greed in a bottle.


Ian Woofenden said...

Two days riding on one odometer. Mostly from yesterday.

13.42 miles
8.94 mph average
30.75 mph max


Woodswalker said...

Glad you're back at your blog, Allan, and up to your old troublemaking ways. I'm also glad to hear your house survived the storm. Be well and don't drink too much scabby wine.

Allan Stellar said...


Maybe it is time to rest a bit? I know I'm tired too... :)


Once a trouble maker, always a trouble maker... :)