Monday, January 29, 2007

My 1/29/07 e-mail to Matthew Levy, Balzac Communications,

1/29 Balzac/CIA e-mail to me:
Good morning John-...Sorry for the confusion. I misunderstood the attachment, thinking it was the same ballot that I had already received..........Thank you for all of the feedback on the voting structure. I will forward it to the committee for future consideration........Best regards,.....Matthew Levy......Balzac Communications

My 1/29 e-mail to Balzac/CIA
Matthew: ...... Thanks for you quick response. I just rechecked my e-mail to you and confirmed that I had attached the document which contained my recommendations for the future nominating process. Just in case your copy of the e-mail did not include the attachment I have cut and pasted it below ......Again, thanks so much for including me in the process.... Best regards, John Olney

1/29 Balzac/CIA e-mail to me:
Hello there John- I’m glad to hear that you enjoyed being part of the voting process. To answer your question on how I got your name, and why you were selected, I can provide you with some information – and hopefully answer your question. A panel of people from the CIA and Balzac Communications was put together to identify the top 70 wine journalists. I believe your name was submitted by Reuben Katz – though I could be mistaken. No matter who submitted your name, you were approved as one of the voters – which I take as the committees knowledge of your background of being a student of the history of Napa Valley.......Reading through your letter below, I don’t immediately see the suggestions that you have for the future nominations. Would you mind redirecting me to the nominations you refer to? Once I have the names, I’ll forward them to the committee members for consideration for next year’s induction.....Thank you for taking the time to vote for this year’s induction......Regards, Matthew Levy, Balzac Communications, 1200 Jefferson St., Napa, CA 94559, Ph: (707) 255-7667,

My Jan 29 e-mail to Balzac Comm./CIA:
Dear Mr. Matthew Levy: My name is John Olney, owner of The Wine Country Club, and I was most pleased and honored that I was invited to participate along with the others in voting for the first inductees to the Vintner’s Hall Of Fame. How you got my name and why I was selected I have yet to figure out but I most enjoyed being a part of this program.........I provided my completed ballot by e-mail in the morning of January 29. I hope you received, if not, the attached document also contains my vote casting. Now I am writing to you to offer some suggestions for future nominations.........But before going forward here is a little bit about my background: I am a student of the history of Napa Valley wine production and I write about many of the early characters on my blog site ( ) as well as for other publications. My personal library includes over 250 book featuring Napa Valley in part or in whole. To understand NV and its history is to also familiarize oneself with all the other players in what I call “Wine World USA.”.........I am currently drafting a novel tentatively titled, “Entwined Vines.” You can read the Prelude in this book at I am also working on a draft of my non fiction book titled “The Gentlemen Winegrowers of San Francisco - The Men who truly established Napa Valley winegrowing.” Bits and pieces of this book can be read by clicking on my “Histories” subblog on the main page of my blog site. (URL above in prev. para.) .........It is within the context of the above background that I feel qualified to offer my comments and suggestions. I hope you and the CIA organization will not take offense to my boldness. I firmly believe in what you/CIA is doing and I offer my thoughts only in the hopes to contribute and improve the process.........Warm regards,John M. Olney, The Wine Country Club, 1325 Imola West, #409, Napa, CA 94559, Ph: 707-299-9548.

January 17, 2007, Dear John Olney, On Friday, March 9, 2007 The Culinary Institute of America will honor Robert Mondavi as the first Pioneer to be inducted into the Vintners Hall of Fame during the first annual induction dinner at Greystone, our Napa Valley campus..........The reception and dinner ceremony will honor Robert Mondavi’s pioneering efforts on behalf of the California wine industry. A sculpture created by artist Larry Nolan, of LJN Sculpture in Windsor, Vermont, will be unveiled as the first of many to be on display to the public in the Vintners Hall of Fame at Greystone..........In addition, fifteen wine industry Founders (vintners whose early ventures planted the roots of the present-day California wine industry), and seven Icons (those whose achievements have contributed to the establishment, nourishment and future of the California wine industry) have been nominated to be inducted in this year’s ceremonies..........I am writing to invite you to join a panel of American wine journalists to vote for six Founders and two Icons to join Robert Mondavi in the 2007 induction ceremonies......Please open the attached document and send the completed ballot via email, fax or mail by February 1, 2007 to: Balzac Communications, c/o Matthew Levy, 1200 Jefferson St. , Napa, CA 94590, 707-255-1119 (fax).........Thank you for honoring us with your time and your vote. I hope that you will consider joining me in the Napa Valley for this exciting event. Please contact Balzac Communications for more information.....Cordially,Tim Ryan, President.


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