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Wine and grape groups honor New York's John Martini.

Penn Yan, NY. -- The Richard Smith Distinguished Service Award for research and major contributions to the American grape and wine industry was presented to John Martini, owner of Martini Vineyards and Anthony Road Winery in the Finger Lakes region of New York. Smith's family--his wife Claudia, son Jason and daughter Kacy--presented the award to Martini at the Winegrape Growers of America's annual leadership luncheon. That organization co-sponsored the award along with Wine-America and the National Grape and Wine Initiative. The luncheon was held Jan. 25, during the Unified Wine & Grape Symposium.

The late Richard Smith, founder and co-owner of Smith Family Wines and Paraiso Vineyards in the Monterey region of California, was an active member of the three sponsoring organizations, as was his close friend, John Martini. Both families planted grapes in the 1970s; in 1989 the Smiths produced their first wines from Paraiso Vineyards, and the Martinis opened their winery in New York.

Paraiso Vineyards now has 289 acres of grapes, and Smith Family Wines produces 20,000 cases of wine. Martini Vineyards has 80 acres of vineyard and Anthony Road Winery produces 15,000 cases of wine. At both Anthony Road Winery and Smith Family Wines, the second generation is actively involved in running the business.

Smith's son Jason Smith said, "Our family is honored to have my dad's commitment to this industry represented by this perpetual award. John Martini is the East Coast version of my Dad ... true dedication, passion and love for the industry, the community and, most importantly, his family. His tireless work and ability to put others before himself made this selection easy for the Richard Smith Distinguished Service Award."

Caption: Jason, Claudia and Kacy Smith (from left) present the Richard Smith Distinguished Service Award to John Martini.

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Title Annotation:Wine East: Covering Eastern North America
Comment:Wine and grape groups honor New York's John Martini.(Wine East: Covering Eastern North America)
Author:McKee, Linda Jones
Publication:Wines & Vines
Geographic Code:1U2NY
Date:Mar 1, 2017
Words:305
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