Culinary News from The Culinary Institute of America

Beckstoffer Encourages CIA Graduates to Preserve Agriculture

Media Contact:

Stephan Hengst

St. Helena, CA – Andy Beckstoffer, founder and owner of Beckstoffer Vineyards in the Napa Valley, encouraged students graduating last week from The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone to remember the agricultural heritage they’ve experienced in the surrounding Wine Country, and help to preserve it. Beckstoffer addressed 37 students graduating with Associate in Occupational Studies (AOS) degrees in culinary arts and baking & pastry arts.

“If you remember one thing about us as you venture out into this world beyond Napa, I hope it will be the way we care about agriculture and work to preserve it,” said Beckstoffer. “I hope you remember the passion with which we approach business, our great wines, and our winemaking families.”

Beckstoffer Vineyards owns and farms more than 3,600 acres of top-quality grape-growing properties in the Napa Valley, Mendocino County, and the Red Hills of Lake County. The company’s commitment to excellence, innovation, and its people is a benchmark for the industry.

Beckstoffer has pioneered innovations in drip irrigation, vine spacing, bench graft production, vineyard technology, and farming management that have significantly improved wine grape quality. He has also become a fixture of the California wine culture, leading a number of top Napa Valley vineyards and becoming actively involved in many of the region’s important trade organizations and initiatives.

Beckstoffer reminded the graduating students that in the 1970s, it was people their age who provided new energy and passion to the Napa Valley and created the outstanding grapes and wines that are enjoyed today.

“It’s your time to make a difference in the kitchens and the towns and cities where you will migrate,” said Beckstoffer. “You must be respectful, and cooperative and continue to learn from your elders, but you need to get on with it.”

Photo Caption and Hi-Res Image

Andy Beckstoffer, founder and owner of Beckstoffer Vineyards in the Napa Valley asks students graduating from The Culinary Institute of America at Greystone to remember the agricultural heritage in the valley, and to help preserve it. (Photo credit: Charlie Gesell/CIA)
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Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is an independent, not-for-profit college offering associate and bachelor's degrees with majors in culinary arts, baking and pastry arts, applied food studies, and culinary science, as well as certificate programs in culinary arts and wine and beverage studies. As the world's premier culinary college, the CIA provides thought leadership in the areas of health & wellness, sustainability, and world cuisines & cultures through research and conferences. The CIA has a network of 46,000 alumni that includes industry leaders such as Grant Achatz, Anthony Bourdain, Roy Choi, Cat Cora, Dan Coudreaut, Steve Ells, Charlie Palmer, and Roy Yamaguchi. The CIA also offers courses for professionals and enthusiasts, as well as consulting services in support of innovation for the foodservice and hospitality industry. The college has campuses in Hyde Park, NY; St. Helena, CA; San Antonio, TX; and Singapore.

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