A portrait of the Gallos uncovers the existence of the family's black sheep, Joseph jr.--Ernest and Julio's younger brother--and probes into why he was denied his third of the winery
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A fast-paced, gossipy rundown on the House of Gallo, whose octogenarian patriarchs helped make wine a mass-market commodity in the US while concealing a past replete with personal and business scandal. Although Ernest and Julio remain the most familiar Gallos, they have a younger brother, Joseph, Jr., who has no stake in the family firm. When the two elders, who built the immensely profitable E & J Gallo Winery, sued Joseph during the mid-1980's to prevent him from putting his own name on the cheese he made for sale, they opened a Pandora's box. Drawing on the vast troves of documentary material released by the protracted litigation, and on his access to many Gallo principals, relatives, and ex-employees, Hawkes (Feminism on Trial, 1986) offers a revelatory, generation- spanning chronicle. In addition to piercing the corporate veil, the author discloses that Joseph, Sr., an Italian immigrant who became a successful grape grower in northern California, murdered his wife and then killed himself in 1933. His estate gave Ernest and Julio the means to get into the wine business in a big way--with an unacknowledged assist from a bootlegging uncle. Hawkes leaves little doubt that the ruthlessly autocratic Ernest euchred a trusting Joseph, Jr., out of a potentially sizable legacy. Moreover, she points out, for all its oenological pretensions, Gallo's most profitable products are so-called street wines (Thunderbird, Night Train Express, Gypsy Rose). Covered as well are: the strong-arm tactics used to gain distribution for Gallo wares; frequent run-ins with federal authorities; the peace of mind attained by Joseph, Jr., despite primal betrayals; and a host of familial fancies long accepted as facts. While Hawkes gives Joseph, Jr., the benefit of almost every doubt, she provides a slick reckoning on the Gallos, a would-be dynasty that, by her account, may be nearing the end of the line. (Eight pages of b&w photographs--not seen.) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Publishers Weekly:
Re-arguing a trademark infringement case already settled by the courts, Hawkes ( Feminism on Trial ) presents so much immaterial evidence that the book becomes tedious. At issue: the legality of California rancher Joseph Gallo to label his consumer cheese product with his full name, as he does on his bulk shipments. Filing their successful injunction suit in 1988 were his brothers, E. and J. Gallo Winery owners Ernest (b. 1909) and Julio (b. 1910). In a defeated counterclaim, the then 70-year-old Joseph sued for a third share of the wine company as inheritance from their parents' estate. Yet the youngest son, who had been raised by his brothers after their father murdered their mother and then committed suicide when Joseph was 13, had never been a partner in the firm and had left his brothers' employ in 1967. To show Ernest as an aggressive, sleazy commander-in-chief and Julio as biddable, Hawkes dredges up corporate history (inadvertently the most interesting aspect of the book) and family relationships (only Joseph is depicted as likable) through three generations. The case, which severed the elderly siblings' friendship, is poignant, but Hawkes's blatant advocacy journalism leaves the reader curious to hear the other side's story. Photos. First serial to the Los Angeles Times Magazine.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Book Condition: Brand New. New. Bookseller Inventory # A5624
Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # mon0000171078
Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110671649868
Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. New Condition. Clean crisp tight copy, no marks or tears. Email Notification. Satisfaction Guaranteed. Bookseller Inventory # ppl17062110660
Book Description Simon & Schuster, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0671649868