Hargrave, Louisa Thomas
Hargrave, Louisa Thomas
Office—Winewise, LLC, P.O. Box 1405, Jamesport, NY 11947. Agent—Denise Shannon Literary Agency, Inc., 20 W. 22nd St., Ste. 1603, New York, NY 10010.
Writer, businessperson, consultant, and public speaker. Hargrave Vineyard, Cutchogue, NY, co-owner, 1973-99; founder of consulting business WineWise, Jamesport, NY; Stony Brook University, Center for Wine, Food and Culture, Stony Brook, NY, interim director, 2004-05, director, 2005—. Has also served on the New York State Governor's East End Task Force, on the Blue Ribbon Commission to Preserve Agriculture in the Town of Southold, and as President of the East End Economic and Environmental Institute. Also a member of the Long Island Regional Planning Board and Les Dames d'Escoffier International; has served as trustee of Oysterponds Historical Society, the Cutchogue Library, and The Old House, Cutchogue.
Long Island Wine Council (founder and member emeritus).
Honorary Doctor of Science degree, Dowling College, 1998.
The Vineyard: The Pleasures and Perils of Creating an American Family Winery (memoir), Viking (New York, NY), 2003.
Also wine writer for the Suffolk Times and the News Review; columnist for the Wine Press; contributor to journals and periodicals, including the Long Island Historical Journal, Connoisseur, and Bon Appétit.
Louisa Thomas Hargrave is credited as being one of the cofounders of the Long Island Wine trade when she and her husband, Alex, planted wine grapes on the North Fork in 1973. For more than twenty years, she was co-owner with Alex of the Hargrave Vineyards before selling out in 1999 and turning her attention to writing about wine. In her book The Vineyard: The Pleasures and Perils of Creating an American Family Winery, Hargrave recounts the founding of her vineyard with her now former husband and the early years of struggling to make their vineyard a successful and profitable venture. She also writes about her family life, including her children and the breakup of her marriage.
Referring to The Vineyard as a "folksy but original story," a Kirkus Reviews contributor also wrote: "The story catches the pioneer feel of the venture." A Publishers Weekly reviewer also praised the book, noting that the author "presents a colorful picture of life at the vineyard." The reviewer wrote in the same article: "Her discussions of some of the historical and technical aspects of viticulture … make for engaging reading." Andrea R. Dietze, writing in the Library Journal, commented: "Louisa skillfully narrates their [her and her husband's] story, culminating in the dissolution of their marriage and … their business." Reviewers also generally praised the author's ability to write about all aspects of her life. A contributor to the Loving Long Island Web site wrote: "I love the way Louisa tells this story. There's enough detail about the mechanics of viticulture and zymurgy to satisfy my curious mind, but more importantly, as I read The Vineyard I felt like I was living it with Louisa and her family."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Hargrave, Louisa Thomas, The Vineyard: The Pleasures and Perils of Creating an American Family Winery, Viking (New York, NY), 2003.
Kirkus Reviews, April 15, 2003, review of The Vineyard, p. 585.
Library Journal, July, 2003, Andrea R. Dietze, review of The Vineyard, p. 117.
New York Times Book Review, August 10, 2003, Jillian Dunham, review of The Vineyard, section 7, p. 20.
Publishers Weekly, April 14, 2003, review of The Vineyard, p. 56.
Lendevours Blog,http://lennthompson.typepad.com/ (March 5, 2005), "10 Sips … With Louisa Thomas Hargrave," interview with author.
Louisa Thomas Hargrave Home Page,http://www.winepioneer.com/Default.asp (March 21, 2007).
Loving Long Island,http://www.loving-long-island.com/ (March 21, 2007), review of The Vineyard.
Luxury Experience,http://luxuryexperience.com/ (March 21, 2007), brief profile of author.
Suffolk Times Online,http://www.timesreview.com/ (April 24, 2003), Gwendolen Groocock, "Writing the Book on Wine."