Winemaker, Continuum Estate
Tim has been active in the California wine industry for decades and a leader in developing, defining and promoting the AVA system in Napa Valley. Having an appreciation of local history as well as an understanding of the great wine appellations of the world, Tim helped guide the formation of the Napa Valley appellation, with a vision of embracing the further recognition of sub-appellations within it. A firm believer that great wine is a reflection of its origin, Tim is convinced that clear and logical definitions of appellations within the Napa Valley are critical to long-term education and understanding of this great region and its diverse and distinct wines.
Tim pioneered the concept of "natural winegrowing," developing significant environmental programs in the vineyards that go beyond organic. Many of his innovations in the winery promoted gentle handling and natural elevation of the winemaking process. The great research conducted and the many wine makers who Tim mentored through the years is how the winery came to be affectionately known as the "Mondavi University."
From 1974 until 2004, Tim Mondavi was winemaker and director of winemaking for his father's eponymous winery in Oakville, Robert Mondavi Winery. In addition he oversaw and improved production with associated wineries in other parts of the state: Byron in Santa Barbara, Arrowood in Sonoma and Woodbridge in Lodi.
His firsthand experience in the art of winegrowing extend to Italy, Chile, France and Australia, where Tim established and guided winemaking teams in the creation of world-class wines. In Napa Valley, he planned and developed the wine, vineyards and winery for Opus One. Overseas, he initiated and developed the joint ventures Luce in Italy and Sena in Chile. Tim also initiated and developed improvements in the vineyards and winery for Tenuta dell' Ornellaia.
Country born: United States
Education: Bachelor's degree U.C. Davis Viticulture and Enology
Years in the wine industry: 30+ years
Honors / Awards:
Tim is a former member of the board of directors for the Carneros Quality Alliance and the Napa Valley Vintners. He was also a founding member of the Oakville Winegrowers Organization and the Stags Leap District Winegrowers. He is a member of the Campaign Cabinet of the St. Helena Hospital Foundation, and former Chairman of the Foundation Board.
Tim has always felt that a strong emphasis on viticultural research programs, new developments in rootstocks, clones, and vine density is key to making great wine. The personality of great wine is a manifestation of the soil, climate and the people involved.