Drew Barrymore stole hearts in the ’80s when the child actress shared Reese’s Pieces candy with a friendly alien in “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.” Today, the actress-entrepreneur is known for a decidedly more sophisticated palate, channeling a love of wine into a professional pursuit with Barrymore Wines.
The same year that audiences were flocking to see his Academy Award-winning epic “Apocalypse Now,” Francis Ford Coppola was unveiling another ambitious project. Francis Ford Coppola Winery was formed in 1979 and continues a family tradition of winemaking—his grandfather used to make his own blends in the basement of his New York apartment building.
It’s a family affair for former Black Eyed Peas singer Fergie, who started Ferguson Crest with her father, Pat Ferguson, back in 2006. The 6-acre estate winery is set in Santa Barbara’s Santa Ynez Valley and even features a red blend called Fergalicious.
Chef, restaurateur, and TV personality Guy Fieri purchased a 5-acre pinot noir vineyard in the Russian River Valley region of California called Hunt & Ryde Winery, named after his sons, Hunter and Ryder.
Hockey legend Wayne Gretzky is synonymous with the number 99—his famed jersey number was officially retired from the NHL when he left the game in 2000. So it’s no surprise that when Gretzky launched his next endeavor, he made sure that his signature number was well represented. The No. 99 is proudly emblazoned on his wine bottles and his members-only group is called the No. 99 Wine and Cocktail Club.
Longtime friends Julianne Hough and Nina Dobrev collaborated with Napa Valley winemaker Jamey Whetstone to create Fresh Vine. Hough, who became a household name as a cast member on “Dancing with the Stars,” and Dobrev, who played Elena on “The Vampire Diaries,” wanted to take a health-conscious approach to their wine label.
From “Star Wars” to Skywalker Vineyards, George Lucas has, once again, tapped into his creative and entrepreneurial mind to create an empire of a different kind. It was in 1991 when Lucas first planted vineyards in Marin County, north of San Francisco.
In 2005, actor Kyle MacLachlan—a Yakima, Washington, native—sought to combine his love for his hometown with his passion for the wine industry to create Pursued by Bear Wine. The label’s name—a hat tip to the famed stage direction “Exit, pursued by a bear” from Shakespeare’s “A Winter’s Tale”— also blends in the actor’s love of theater.
In 2000, musician and lead frontman Dave Matthews established the Virginia-based Blenheim Vineyards on an 18th-century farm that he originally purchased for its local historical significance. The farm, once frequented by neighbor Thomas Jefferson, is located about 20 minutes outside of Charlottesville.
Yao Ming, a former professional basketball player for the Houston Rockets, has since retired from the sport and has ventured into the wine industry. The Napa Valley, California-based Yao Family Wines was established in 2011, but Ming developed an interest in wines well before then.
New Zealand actor Sam Neill, best known for starring in films like “Jurassic Park” and “The Piano,” launched his Two Paddocks wine brand in 1993. The organic and biodynamic pinot noir vineyard is situated on 5 acres of land in the Central Otago wine region of New Zealand.
In 2016, former San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Terrell Owens was presented with an opportunity to partner with Lasorda Family Wines, founded by the late Baseball Hall of Fame manager Tommy Lasorda.
Many may know Pink as a famous pop singer, but the Grammy Award winner has also ventured into owning her own wine business, Two Wolves, a 25-acre vineyard she purchased with her husband in Santa Ynez, California. The brand’s name, derived from a Cherokee parable, includes a cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon, and a petit verdot.
Former NFL player Charles Woodson launched Intercept Wines brand in 2019. Woodson developed an appreciation for wine during his training in Napa Valley while playing for the Oakland Raiders. Woodson’s pinot noir has aromas of strawberry, nutmeg, and pastry cream.