At the completion of Pat LaFontaine’s Hall of Fame hockey career, he set out to combine his passions in a best-of-breed manner, to benefit those less fortunate. He worked with Warner Books to pen his semi-autobiographical book, “Companions in Courage.” All of the proceeds from the sale of the book were used to start a foundation of the same name to benefit children’s hospitals.
He then partnered with industry giants like ESI Design, Microsoft, the NHL and DuPont to create interactive rooms that connect pediatric patients with their family, classmates and heroes. His Lion’s Dens rooms now benefit more than 50,000 hospitalized children per year throughout North America.
The former hockey star has always had a passion for fine wine, so he looked for a way to combine his passions for wine and helping children. After an introduction to Three Monkeys Wine (www.ThreeMonkeysWine.com) based in Napa, LaFontaine had found his latest “best-of-breed”.
Frank Bellizzi of Three Monkeys helped source the finest Pinot Noir grapes and handcrafted a wine that captures the essence of the Russian River Valley with its complex aromatics, weightless elegance and unforgettable finish.
LaFontaine not only had a major hand in the selection of the grapes, he also played a key role in the design of the label. He said, “the most famous lines in hockey have been memorialized for all time. We wanted ‘Pinot Line’ (www.pinotline.com) to have that same staying power.” The bottle features the brand name handwritten in script by the former hockey star. Playing off his “P” and “L” initials, the Pinot Line takes on a most personalized look. A hockey center-ice red line and face-off circle provide the only other artwork on the front label.
The 2012 vintage was bottled in Sebastopol, CA on July 14, 2013. The harvest was truly one for the ages – bountiful yields and extremely high fruit quality that generated smiles from both growers and winemakers. All 118 cases of the 2012 Pinot Line sold out quickly at some of the finest restaurants and exclusive clubs in America. All proceeds from the sale were directed to the CiC Foundation.
The 2013 vintage is bottled and will be available for sale in the spring of 2015. Availability of the new vintage will be announced on the website, www.PinotLine.com as well as the CiC Foundation website (www.CiC16.org).