This photo has to be one of my all time favorites; on the left is Robert Mondavi and that is me on the right. The photo was taken in 2004 at COPIA: The American Center for Food Wine and the Arts in Napa Valley. At the time I was working in my first career as a professional cook and I was volunteering at the center a few weekends a month as means of professional development and networking. For a food geek like me COPIA was the ultimate playground. I had the opportunity to taste fine wines, learn more about food and meet food and wine celebrities. This photo is me talking to Robert Mondavi at the volunteer Christmas party. Mondavi and his wife were founders and benefactors of COPIA. Robert Mondavi was a pioneer of the wine industry in California who is credited with bringing worldwide recognition to wines from the Napa Valley. Just about anybody who drinks wine will have sampled a bottle with this man’s name on the label. Cheers!