The multi Oscar nominee and star of ‘The Big Lebowski’ and ‘Tron’ has always managed his career skilfully, so much so that he has become an icon on the Hollywood scene. The day he tried to make his own wine, however, he was not quite so successful.
“I have always been a wine enthusiast. That doesn’t make me an expert. Let’s say, I’m someone who knows how to appreciate the good things in life. The wine scene is fascinating because it allows you to meet some marvellous people, like the day I met Steve Ledson who owns vines in Sonoma. It just so happens that Steve also heads up a children’s charity, the Harmony Foundation for Children. One morning he contacted me and asked me if my new album – called ‘Be Here Soon’ – could become the name of one of his wines. The aim was for the proceeds to go to a good cause.
I had known Steve since ‘Tucker’ was filmed because it was shot on his property. As you know, Francis Ford Coppola directed it. During filming, Francis and Steve would host tastings for us. I started to get a taste for it and vowed to create my own wine one day in Santa Barbara [Ed. Jeff has since then sold his company]. Quite honestly, the result was not great. At best, the wine tasted like grape juice, at worst, it was like vinegar! It’s at times like these that you realise you don’t become a wine grower overnight!”