2010 Red Sox Charity Wines Launch Party

Picture I took of Jacoby at the Charity Wines Launch Party

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to be invited to the launch party of Zinfandellsbury (a Red Zinfandel from Ellsbury) and Chardon-K (a Chardonnay from Beckett) which are charity wines from Longball Cellars. If you are not familiar with the Red Sox charity wines the players do not profit a single dime; rather, 100% of their proceeds will raise money for local charities.

About the Players & their Charities

  • Jacoby Ellsbury: ZinfandEllsbury – benefiting the Navajo Relief Fund,
    Project Bread and the Ellsbury-Read Project.
  • Josh Beckett: Chardon-K – benefiting The Josh Beckett Foundation and Children’s Hospital Boston.

The luanch party was held across from legendary Fenway Park behind the Green Monster (not Wally) at the House of Blues in their VIP Foundation Room. It was my first time in the House of Blues and the last time I was there at a club it was still called Mama Kins (formerly owned by Boston’s own Aerosmith), Axis and Avalon (The House of Blues has taken over all three clubs).

To give you a taste (pun was intentional) of what it was like to be there I have added a few videos from the event. This first one is the opening monologue from the event’s emcee, NESN field reporter Heidi Watney (of the Olympia Sports commercial). I apologize in advance of the less than HD quality of the video, but I used only what I had, in this case, my 5 year old camera.

Shortly thereafter, we were given a little history lesson on Charity Wines from founder Andrew Graff. Again, I apologize for the poor video quality.

Last, here is the exchange between Heidi Watney and Jacoby Ellsbury as they talk about his wine, Zinfandellsbury, his number change from 46 to 2 and more…

Unfortunately, Josh Beckett couldn’t attend due to his back injury which was caused by batting practice the day before in preparation for inter-league play next week (starting on Friday, May 21st in Philadelphia). We were notified of this via a personal statement from Josh which basically said he was with the training staff that day in attempt to get him back into game shape for his next start. This statement was read by the director of the Josh Beckett Foundation, Jason Oberle.

A still shot I took of Jacoby & Heidi at the launch party

As far as which wine was better, after tasting a glass of each and being a biased red wine drinker, I’d have to say that prefer Zinfandellsbury, but for a white wine, Chardon-K is top notch, just like Josh Beckett himself.

For those of you reading this who are not local New Englanders, but would love to purchase one or both of these wines, please visit the Charity Wines website at www.charitywines.com.

Furthermore, the people from the charities in attendance that I spoke with were all very kind & most of them promised to send me pictures & other information to share with you all in the near future so be on the lookout!

Below is the official press release from yesterday announcing the launch of these two great charity wines.

BOSTON BASEBALL CHARITY WINES LAUNCHED:

JACOBY ELLSBURY & JOSH BECKETT A HIT


Jacoby Ellsbury & Josh Beckett Charity Wines
Artwork by Jonathan Banchick of Banchick Illustration

CHARITY WINES LAUNCH


Today, May 11, 2010, Charity Wines from Jacoby Ellsbury and Josh Beckett became available throughout New England wherever wine is sold at retailers, restaurants, and online at www.charitywines.com.

100% of athlete proceeds from Zinfandellsbury (a Red Zinfandel from Ellsbury) and Chardon-K (a Chardonnay from Beckett) are donated to their charities. To date, Charity Wines funds raised from 30+ professional athletes with their own wine labels across more than a dozen markets have raised $1.7 million.

WINE TASTING & LAUNCH PARTY


Before the Red Sox played the Blue Jays today, Jacoby Ellsbury and Josh Beckett hosted a Wine Tasting and Launch Party today in the Foundation Room at House of Blues behind Fenway Park. NESN field reporter Heidi Watney was emcee. Josh Beckett was unable to attend do to his receiving medical examination for a tweaked back, though his father, John Beckett was present at the Check Presentation at Fenway Park later in the day.

Those in attendance tasted the wines for the first time, heard from Jacoby Ellsbury and Josh Beckett Foundation director, Jason Oberle, and met representatives from Jacoby’s charities.

OVERVIEW


Debuting from Longball Cellars are charity wines for Boston baseball stars
Jacoby Ellsbury and Josh Beckett. The players do not profit a single dime. Instead, 100% of their proceeds will raise big league dollars for local charities:

  • Jacoby Ellsbury: ZinfandEllsbury – benefiting the Navajo Relief Fund,
    Project Bread and the Ellsbury-Read Project.
  • Josh Beckett: Chardon-K – benefiting The Josh Beckett Foundation and Children’s Hospital Boston.

The names ZinfandEllsbury and Chardon-K are word plays of the wine varietals in the bottles: Red Zinfandel and Chardonnay. The 2010 wines are produced by acclaimed winery Clos LaChance out of San Martin, California.

Both wines are expected to retail for about $14 a bottle, and are available across New England, wherever wine is sold. For non-local members of “The Nation,” wines can be purchased online at www.charitywines.com.

Baseball enthusiasts and wine aficionados may recall that in 2007, Charity Wines debuted in Boston with wines from Manny Ramirez (Manny Being Merlot),  Curt Schilling (Schilling Schardonnay) and Tim Wakefield (CaberKnuckle). The effort sold more than a quarter-million bottles. Charity Wines returned in 2008 with releases from David Ortiz (Vintage Papi), Jason Varitek (Captain’s Cabernet) and Kevin Youkilis (SauvignYoouuk Blanc). To date, more than $1,400,000 has been raised overall as a result of athlete wines and their contributions.

ABOUT CHARITY WINES

After personal tragedies involving friends and family with cancer and heart disease, Andrew Graff started Charity Wines, a philanthropic division of his Massachusetts based company, VinLozano Imports Inc. With the goal of pairing fine wine with great charities, the Longball Cellars brand was born. Nationwide, more than 30 professional athletes across baseball, football and hockey have teamed up with Charity Wines to raise funds for great causes. Visit www.CharityWines.com.

CONTACTS

Media Inquiries:

Brett Rudy

Charity Hop Sports Marketing

617-840-7981

brett.rudy@charityhop.com

Sales Inquiries:

Andrew Graff

Charity Wines / VinLozano Imports

978-297-5477

andrewgraff@vinlozanoimports.com

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5 Comments

  1. Ed Mckeel

    May 12, 2010 at 9:28 pm

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