A Perfect Score ~ The Art, Soul and Business of a 21st Century Winery is an interesting read for wine aficionados everywhere. Written and narrated by Craig and Kathryn Hall of Napa Valley’s Hall Wines, the book takes readers on an arduous journey from the vine to the glass.
Kathryn was rooted in the family wine business in Mendocino County long before meeting Craig in 1991. Circumstances drew Kathryn away from her beloved vineyards and into a political career in Dallas, Texas where she met Craig by happenstance.
While Kathryn had winemaking in her ancestral blood, Craig had the business acumen to financially launch their dream of making world-class Cabernet Sauvignon in the then-sleepy Napa Valley.
Together they forged ahead and purchased a neglected vineyard with a fixer-upper house and began custom crushing wine. The rest, per se, was history. And what a great history it was!
The Perfect Score narratives between Craig and Kathryn painted the colorful, yet often heart-wrenching tale of building a wine business from the vineyard to the bottle. Intimate details of the toil in the fields, marketing snafus and disappointing crop failures resonated throughout the book, yet the will to succeed was tantamount. Emotions ran raw as the losses mounted Yet, the Halls prevailed.
Raising a young family while trying to develop a burgeoning wine business proved even more challenging. Remembering her own magical childhood days in the vineyards chasing rabbits, Kathryn commissioned a whimsical 35-foot long metal sculpture of Little Bunny Foo Foo.
The gigantic object d’arte was hoisted 27 feet in the air, appearing to leap over the vines next to the iconic Highway 29.
While much to the children’s delight, not everyone in the small farming community was amused. These moments were priceless and illustrated the pioneering spirit, sense of humor and optimism held by Craig and Kathryn during their trials and tribulations.
The story progressed as the Hall’s etched out a piece of notoriety in Napa Valley. Bounding back from the recession of 2007-2008, they turned to fellow industry giants, and neighbors, Robert and Margrit Mondavi for guidance.
All events lead up to Wine Advocate’s Robert Parker’s unexpected “Perfect Score” and the Hall’s synonymous rise to fame.
Wine lovers, pour a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon and be prepared to engage in the wild, unpredictable world of winemaking! www.hallwines.com
(Available September 13, 2016 $26.00 ISBN:9781455535767)