New wine brands are released just about every week, it seems, but one brand that made its debut last weekend is quite different from others. It’s made by a company that has four generations involved. And they’re all women.
Leo Joseph Estate Cellars in St. Helena produced the wine from the Lawrence Harrison Vineyard, a partnership of 100-year-old Lillian Harrison and her 63-year-old daughter, Carolyn Harrison Lawrence.
Carolyn’s daughter, Donna Lee Lawrence Costa, 38, helps with the accounting and business side of the organization, and the youngest member, Lillian’s great-granddaughter, Erika Lawrence, 19, is being groomed to help in sales — she’s currently a sophomore at UC Davis.
Lillian’s official role is an investor, but she also serves as a taster, Carolyn said. “When we tried the wine for the first time, we brought it to her (Lillian) and she liked it.” She explained that her mother knows wine — she comes from an Italian family that always had wine on the table at their home in San Francisco’s North Beach. “She was raised with it — it was always red wine. My dad was raised in St. Helena, so he was always around wine, too,” she said.