By Robert Farmer
I admit to some hesitancy in coming around to buying and actually admitting to buying Newman’s Own-brand salad dressing. I just had this thing against celebrity self-promotion and, in the competitive salad-dressing market, there were a number of other brands out there that suited me just fine without having a movie star staring out at me from the label. But it turned out that Newman’s dressing is actually quite good. So though it’s certainly not the only kind I buy, I’ve totally overcome my ill-placed reservation. It’s with that same lack of misconception that I look forward to pulling the cork on Newman’s Own wines—yes, wines! He’s into the vino biz now, adding a branded chardonnay and cabernet to his list growing product line. Both vintages are 2006 and made with coastal California-grown grapes. The wines were produced in conjunction with St. Helena-based Rebel Wine Co., which is a collaboration of Three Thieves and Trinchero Family Estates. The wines are being marketed as high-end—retailing for $16 a bottle. And, as with all Newman’s Own products, all profits and royalties after taxes are donated to educational and charitable purposes. For that reason alone, it’s worth giving the guy a try.