Jim Molles, Molles Vineyard – Lodi, CA

Grows: CK Mondavi Chardonnay, CK Mondavi Cabernet Sauvignon, CK Mondavi Merlot

A third generation grape grower, Jim Molles and his family have been growing grapes for the Mondavi family for more than 16 years. Jim’s grandfather purchased the original ranch in the early 1920s and Jim’s father, Frank Molles, trained Jim to run the ranch. Today Molles Vineyard is a fourth-generation, family-run business for which Jim, his mother Mary, his wife Shelley, and their two grown children are stewards. Their 400 acres of vineyards include some of the original vines that were planted by his grandfather in 1936. Jim and his family consider the relationship with the Mondavi family to be a true partnership. Jim works closely with Marc Mondavi and John Moynier to produce “the best possible grape quality.” His favorite part of working with the Mondavi family: “I feel appreciated and I’m not just treated like a number. It’s a close relationship that both parties don’t take for granted.”

Photo: Jim and Shelley Molles
Photo Credit: Bob McClenahan