Uvaggio was founded by Jim Moore in 1997. Jim's creation and development of his own wine label is a gratifying personal achievement; a venture born from the passion, knowledge and experience Jim had developed throughout his wine career.
After graduating from UCLA, Jim's exposure to the "vast spectrum of the world of wine" inspired this career in winemaking. In 1979, Jim joined Robert Mondavi Winery in Oakville, where he spent two decades at what was then perhaps California’s most renowned, if not iconic, winery. In conjunction with course work in winemaking and wine business at UC Davis, his efforts resulted in several career milestones. His efforts earned many accolades, including three Wine Spectator Top 100 Wines of the Year, as well as a coveted “tre bicchiere” from Gambero Rosso. After being promoted to Assistant Winemaker, he was tasked with helping to elevate the quality of Mondavi’s entire Napa Valley portfolio and planned cellar renovations.
In 1998, Jim left Mondavi to develop l’Uvaggio di Giacomo, which translates as “the Blends of James” (or in other words, “Jim’s Wine”), a project he had begun with the 1997 vintage. After consulting for several Napa Valley wineries & working a stint as Director of Winemaking for Bonny Doon Vineyard/Ca’ del Solo, Jim devoted himself to Uvaggio full time in 2003.
Today the Uvaggio label is a "vinous statement four decades in the making":
"Our theory is that if California has a climate which is great for growing Mediterranean varietals, why not take advantage of it? Since we have been on this path for a couple of decades now, we think we have found the right places for growing these cultivar, primarily in Lodi. Our expressions are steeped in California's traditions, with a nod towards Europe’s restraint, so you will find our wines to be a contemporary synthesis of these two approaches"
Emphasizing attributes like vibrant flavors, moderate pricing, lower levels of alcohol, and balanced expressions, these are wines crafted for food affinity and daily enjoyment, bringing an Italian sensibility to the American table.
Jim owns Uvaggio with Mel Knox. Mel’s insight, knowledge, curiosity, and connections were ultimately parlayed into a successful business importing and selling wine barrels (Taransaud and François Frères are among the French cooperages he helped establish as the go-to barrel manufacturers for winemakers in the USA). He has subsequently had wine cuvées (and children) named after him, and although presently immersed in a state of semi-retirement, he staves off senescence with his involvement in Uvaggio.