Charity begins at home. Just ask Francis Ford Coppola, who is co-hosting this year’s Auction Napa Valley and providing one of the star lots – a chance to stay at his Italian palazzo, complete with transfers on his Falcon 7X jet.
Taking place at wineries across Napa Valley on June 1-4 (online bidding opens on May 28), the auction will include other knockout offerings such as rare and vintage local bottlings, while Coppola – who owns Inglenook in Napa Valley and two other wineries in Geyserville – will roll the gnocchi and grill the bistecca alla Fiorentina for an Italian feast on the evening of June 3, which will be co-hosted by triple-Michelin-starred restaurant Meadowood.
The headline sale will be the Live Auction (4.30am-7.30pm on June 3) at Meadowood Napa Valley, where lots will include a never-before-released wine from Promontory, vintages from Colgin Cellars and sought-after 1974s and mini-verticals from Freemark Abbey and Raymond Vineyards. A 12-litre bottle of the Screaming Eagle 2014 will attract much attention, with similarly rare offerings having raised $500,000 in previous years, while other notable locally made lots will include 33 Oakville magnums.
A range of once-in-a-lifetime taste and travel experiences (from around $25,000) will go under the hammer on June 3, including that stay at Coppola’s Palazzo Margherita, as well as a break at his Napa Valley estate. Among other lots will be couples’ escapes to California’s Kenzo Estate, trips to Tahiti, sailing experiences in the Sea of Cortez, vino-cultural tours of South America, a batch of prized Rubicon Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignons from 2009 to 2015, curator-led tours of the V&A and Centre Court seats at Wimbledon.
Coppola’s wife Eleanor and their children Sofia and Roman and granddaughter Gia will also take on co-hosting duties for the event, where this year’s takings – which will go to Californian nonprofit organisations that support community health and children’s education – are expected to exceed the $14.3m taken in 2016.