Rock out with your cork out
July 30th, 2011
06:00 AM ET
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Ray Isle (@islewine on Twitter) is Food & Wine's executive wine editor. We trust his every cork pop and decant – and the man can sniff out a bargain to boot. Take it away, Ray.

Weirdly enough, it was thirty years ago this coming week that this oddball TV station called MTV appeared on the airwaves. Looking at the playlist that day, there are some mighty strange juxtapositions - Styx followed by Carly Simon followed by Iron Maiden. Really?

But the truly odd thing is that not one of the many rock stars who’ve started making wine is represented there. Good Golly, Miss Molly. Clearly, everyone’s favorite grape beverage has come a very long way. In honor of MTV Day, here are five rock star wines to check out:

Dave Matthews
You may have to be in Virginia to find Mr. Matthews’ juice (that’s where his vineyard is), but if you are, it’s worth checking out. The property he owns is called Blenheim Vineyards; a good bottle to try is the fragrant 2010 Viognier ($19). Note also that our man Matthews also makes a mean moussaka; you can get the recipe here.

Maynard James Keenan
Yep, the sometimes-shaven-headed, sometimes-mohawked Tool/Perfect Circle/Puscifer lead singer, composer of songs such as “Prison Sex” and “Ticks and Leeches,” loves wine. And he makes his own - and it’s good, truly - together with winemaking partner Eric Glomsky, at Caduceus Cellars in Arizona, using both California and Arizona fruit. Look for the dark, intense (of course) 2008 Caduceus Cellars Nagua de la Naga ($40). But be prepared to fight rabid Tool fans for it.

I’m not sure I’m ready to forgive them for “Hey, Soul Sister,” which my eight-year-old daughter wants to listen to about fourteen times a day right now. But if I ever do, I suppose I can celebrate the day with a bottle of the band’s newly released 2009 Drops of Jupiter Petite Sirah ($10) (especially since some of the proceeds from the wine support Family House, a non-profit that helps families with seriously ill children). Or, shoot, I can even join their wine club. Since when did rock bands start wine clubs?

Boz Scaggs
Boz, of Silk Degrees fame (back in the Pleistocene era, i.e. 1976), has the good fortune, in wine terms, of having been friends with notable wine importer Kermit Lynch for quite a while, who turned him on to the wines of France’s Rhône Valley. He also happens to live in Napa Valley, where he owns a two-acre organic vineyard atop Mt Veeder. That’s the source of his spicy 2008 Scaggs Vineyard Montage ($40).

Carlos Santana
OK, it’s a bit unclear to me what exactly Carlos Santana’s role is in making the Mumm Napa Valley Santana Brut ($45). Perhaps he simply ponders it onstage while reeling off those signature guitar solos, or perhaps he’s in the winery lab every day analyzing juice samples with safety goggles on - it’s a bit of a mystery. Regardless, this is a tasty sparkling wine, and a portion of its proceeds benefit Santana’s Milagro Foundation, which helps needy children around the world.

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© 2011 American Express Publishing Corporation. All rights reserved.

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Filed under: Content Partner • Food and Wine • Sip • Wine

soundoff (26 Responses)
  1. Ed Zachary

    If the author listed them all, what would we have to comment on?

    August 2, 2011 at 7:35 am |
  2. Blahblahblah

    Whitesnake is selling a wine, too.

    August 2, 2011 at 5:45 am |
  3. Porkasaurus Rex

    Who are those two freaks in that photo?

    August 2, 2011 at 12:14 am |
    • Ed Zachary@PR

      Why yes, yes they are. ~_~

      August 2, 2011 at 7:31 am |
  4. Mr. Bones

    Billy Corgan was always good at whining.

    Oh, they said WINE. Never mind.

    August 1, 2011 at 9:42 pm |
  5. Victor Vovakes

    Thanks to those who donate some proceeds.......nice gesture...shows you care and give back......

    August 1, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
  6. Annoying Yelling "Musician"


    August 1, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  7. RichardHead

    Paris Hilton and Lindsey Lohan both have their own whine,but only available in front of a judge.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
  8. Steve

    Hey CNN, lose the photo of the tool and his bimbo friend.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
    • Ed Zachary@steve

      right away sir
      KMA troll

      August 2, 2011 at 7:34 am |
  9. melissa

    Savanah sampson, the porn star has her own wine. She's naken on the front label. Peggy Flemming, the ice skater has he own wine too.

    August 1, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
  10. Larry Molmud

    Forgot Les Claypool (Primus) and his "Purple Pachyderm"

    August 1, 2011 at 2:30 pm |
  11. beadlady

    Pink Floyd has wine too.

    August 1, 2011 at 2:26 pm |
  12. MoodyBluesFan

    John Lodge of the Moody Blues just introduced his wine from Napa Valley

    August 1, 2011 at 11:21 am |
  13. ryche

    Geoff Tate of Queensryche has his own vinyard and winery... Come on cnn.. Why must you always go mainstream... I agree JustMe.. way incomplete..

    August 1, 2011 at 11:13 am |
    • Zen Monkey

      I only read this because I was hoping for a review of Tate's Insania label. I saw them last night and he's still got it.

      August 1, 2011 at 11:36 am |
    • aggieboy92

      Agreed. Geoff Tate's wine is fantastic. His music is also grossly underrated. Queensryche is a collection of some of the greatest talents in music. Geoff's vocals are simply unreal.

      August 1, 2011 at 11:19 pm |
  14. JustMe

    WHAT????? No mention of the Doobie Brothers/B.R.Cohn Winery connection. Incomplete list, to say the least!

    August 1, 2011 at 10:05 am |
    • Artie B

      I agree, Also David Nelson (NRPS), Nelson Family Wines. A Very good blend!

      August 1, 2011 at 11:40 am |
    • gbakarma

      Bruce Cohn is not a rock star. The Doobies Bros are.

      August 1, 2011 at 12:33 pm |

    Love , LOVE , LOVE Santana !!!! ;-)

    July 31, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
  16. Noxious Sunshine

    Lol Llil John has a wine too... The review i read on it was actually good... This was several yrs ago, though...

    July 30, 2011 at 2:00 pm |
    • Chris

      Yeah, but they said "musicians", not "some guy who yells a lot".

      August 1, 2011 at 9:23 am |
      • Lil John

        You meant to start that sentence with "YEAH!!"

        August 1, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
      • Annoying Yelling "Musician"


        August 1, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
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