Ford Coppola has been making movies for more than 30 years, and wines at his Niebaum-Coppola
Estate Winery in the Napa Valley for almost 20. In February 1995 he purchased
the massive stone lnglenook Chateau and its adjacent vineyards. This purchase
reunited the original Napa Valley estate founded in 1879 by Gustave Niebaum and
preserves his legacy for future generations.
"We want to invite both wine lovers and people who appreciate our creative heritage
here in California. The lnglenook Chateau will house a Centennial Museum which
will chronicle the history the wine making at the estate, and my own history in
film making, in a sense, wine making and film making are two great art forms very
important in the development of California. The Centennial Museum is also the
story of two immigrant families. Gustave Niebaum, a Finnish immigrant who made
his fortune in the Alaska fur trade and then pursued his dream of establishing
a great wine estate to rival those of France, and the Coppola family, Italian-Americans,
who pursued another American dream in the arts--primarily music and film. As we've
researched this exhibit," continued Coppola, "we've discovered
some interesting parallels and intersections between the two families--the two
Visitors to the Centennial Museum will see documents and artifacts from Inglenook's
early beginnings and glory days, and memorabilia from many of Coppola's films.
Vito Corleone's desk and chair from The Godfather, a Tucker car from movie of
the same name, and props and costumes from Bram Stoker's Dracula will be displayed.
Five of Mr. Coppola's Oscars and numerous movie stills will also be on view. An
artifact of particular interest to movie buffs is the riverboat from Apocalypse
Now. The boat has rested in the vineyard above the chateau for many years. Coppola
re-shot a few final scenes at the estate to complete the film. in fact Coppola's
movie career and the winery have been intertwined since the beginning. Rubicon,
the estate's highly-acclaimed proprietary red wine made primarily from Cabernet
Sauvignon, has appeared in several Coppola films and can always be found wherever
Coppola is on location.
"There's so much in a glass of wine--in its color, its aroma and its taste--that
tells of its heritage, of the land that it comes from, of the weather that year,
and of the philosophy of the family making it," says Coppola. "Our family is extremely
concerned with the conservation of this properly, the purity of the water, the
way we farm, the fact that the grapes grown here are certified organic. Our goal
has always been to make one of the great American wines. We are committed to that
goal and to preserving this unique heritage, and look forward to sharing if with
the thousands of wine lovers who visit the Napa Valley each year."
Niebaum-Coppola Winery / 1991 St. Helena Highway / Rutherford CA 94573 707-963-9099