Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



Quick Take: Thanks, Ernest and Julio

Today, Americans say that wine is their favorite alcoholic beverage. The last of the two brothers we should thank for that, Ernest Gallo, died on Tuesday. He was 97.

Ernest Gallo died in the same town where he was born: Modesto, California, which today is within spitting distance of some of the world's finest wineries. But, again, much of that is thanks to him and his brother Julio. Together, they transformed $5,900 and a recipe found at a public library into the world's largest winemaker.

Yet there's irony in eulogizing the Gallos at a site dedicated to stocks. Their winery is still privately held. Ernest, in particular, found that to be a source of pride. "I am glad we do not have to divert energy to what public stockholders think of our management, our future, or the value of our stock," Ernest wrote in the autobiographical Our Story, which he co-authored with Julio in 1994.

Nevertheless, investors owe much to the Gallos. Without them, great stocks like Brown-Forman (NYSE: BF-B  ) , which produces the popular Fetzer California wines and Bolla Italian wines, and Willamette Valley Vineyards (Nasdaq: WVVI  ) would probably be little more than liquor distributors, if they existed at all.

Instead, they're thriving, and wine as a whole is a $125 billion business here in the U.S. If growth persists, experts say that America will surpass France and Italy as the world's largest wine-consuming culture by the end of the decade.

And none of that would have been possible without Ernest and Julio. A toast to you both. Rest well.

Do you agree? Disagree? Let me know.

Wine and spirits have become such a big industry that a few of our newsletters have even recommended stocks that could benefit from these trends. One such pick is Diageo (NYSE: DEO  ) , which has been recommended as a winning pick by the market-beating Motley Fool Income Investor newsletter. If you want to see what other great dividend-paying stocks in growing industries the newsletter has selected, take a free 30-day trial today. Bottom's up!

Fool contributor Tim Beyers thinks a crisp Moscato D'Asti is almost as good as it gets. Tim didn't own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article at the time of publication. The Motley Fool's disclosure policy will drink to your portfolio's health.

Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (9)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 523486, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/20/2016 5:36:19 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated Moments ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,162.35 -40.27 -0.22%
S&P 500 2,141.34 -2.95 -0.14%
NASD 5,241.83 -4.58 -0.09%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

10/20/2016 4:02 PM
DEO $108.25 Down -0.14 -0.13%
Diageo CAPS Rating: *****