Certificate of Membership, American Society of Enologists, 1963

Presented to Napa Valley winemaker Mike Grgich, this document certifies that he was elected a Professional Member of the American Society of Enologists, the Scientific Society of Enologists and Viticulturists, in 1963. Founded in 1950 by University of California researchers and several California winemakers, the society was established to upgrade the field’s technical and scientific approaches to winemaking and to enhance the professional status of enologists and viticulturists within the industry. The society publishes a journal, organizes conferences, supports scholarships, and circulates technical information to its members.
Born in Croatia in 1923, Mike Grgich began his studies in viticulture and enology at the University of Zagreb in 1949. Fearful of political unrest, he left Croatia in 1954 by accepting a United Nations fellowship to continue his studies in West Germany. Months after completing the fellowship he received a visa to Canada, where he lived for two years before landing a job in the place of his dreams, California’s Napa Valley.
Grgich worked briefly for Lee Stewart of Napa’s Chateau Souverain, and for Brother Timothy at Christian Brothers. In 1959 he began working in the laboratory at Beaulieu Vineyards, under the supervision of André Tchelistcheff, a Russian enologist and fellow immigrant. In 1968, Grgich was hired by Robert Mondavi to be part of his new winery in Oakville, and in 1972 he became the winemaker at Chateau Montelena.
Grgich made the 1973 Chardonnay for Chateau Montelena that placed first in the 1976 Paris Tasting, an event that brought international attention to the wines being produced by a new generation of California winemakers. Grgich’s success allowed him to establish his own winery with Austin Hills in 1977.
Currently not on view
Physical Description
wood (frame material)
paper (certificate material)
overall: 14 1/2 in x 12 1/2 in x 3/4 in; 36.83 cm x 31.75 cm x 1.905 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Miljenko Grgich
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Work and Industry: Food Technology
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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