Mike Martini is the third generation of one of the founding families of the California wine business. His grandfather, Louis M. Martini, opened one of the first wineries in Napa Valley after Prohibition, and his father, Louis P, ran the winery until 1977, when Mike became winemaker. Today, the winery, still called Louis M. Martini, is owned by Gallo but overseen by the Martini family and Mike.
We talked about growing up in the Italian-American winemaking mix in Napa Valley, who makes the best red sauce among the founding families, and we even got in a bit of wine talk. That includes solid advice on buying and drinking wine.
The Wine Curmudgeon has always enjoyed the Martini wines, which offer value and terroir. One of my first wine memories is Julia Child interviewing Louis P. on one of her TV shows, discussing how overpriced so many Napa wines were – more than 20 years ago.
I was especially impressed with Mike’s 2006 Alexander Valley Reserve cabernet sauvignon (about $35), which has the dusty tannins the region is known for and the right amount of dark berry fruit. It’s a nice treat for Mother’s or Father’s day.
To download or stream the podcast, click here. It’s about 8 minutes and 7 1/2 megabytes.