Talking Gallo, Talking American Wine History
Reason Magazine, a bastion of….reason….has released a video interview with Jerome Tuccille, the author of "Gallo Be Thy Name: The Inside Story of How One Family Rose to Dominate the U.S. Wine Market".
It's pretty interesting. I've not read the book, but it sounds as though what we have here is a social history of the rise of American wine and the evolution of American culture told from the perspective of the rise of the Gallo via the Ernest and Julio Gallo.
"Gallo Be Thy Name", is the second book written on the Gallo empire and Gallo brothers. The first, released in 1993, was entitled "Blood and Wine". It had a salacious book cover that placed drips of blood next to a corkscrew and focused on Ernest's use of the legal system to stop his younger brother, Joseph, from using the "Gallo" name on cheese he was producing. This new book appears on the surface to be more of a comprehensive rendering. The author has a history of profiling powerful men, including books on Alan Greenspan, Barry Diller, Donald Trump and the Hunt Family.
The interview in the video above is interesting and well done.
I've had issues with Gallo in the past. Early in the direct wine shipping debate they opposed direct shipment of wine. It was not part of their business plan. Their early opposition did not go unnoticed by policy makers.
On the other hand, if you aren't impressed with the accomplishments of the Gallo Family and their contributions to the world of wine, then you just haven't been watching or understanding the history of the American wine industry.