Vineyard owner, entrepreneur
Jun 06, 2019
Jon Malinski
Vineyard owner, entrepreneur

Serial entrepreneur Jon Malinski, a part-time Excelsior resident, finds solace in the words of one of the most celebrated vintners of all time, the legendary Philippine de Rothschild, once famously commented that for anyone entering the wine business, the first 200 years are the most difficult. After that, growing grapes and making fine wines becomes easier, she said. In 2002, Malinski and his wife Arlene were looking for a new challenge when they bought a struggling winery called Piattelli Vineyards in Mendoza, Argentina.

Jon has owned a number of successful businesses over the years, starting with Richfield-based Copy Duplicating Products, which he sold to IKON Office Solutions 20 years ago. Other ventures have included a cattle ranch and housing subdivision in Wyoming, raising bison in Lakeville, and a Russian telecom business. But he was a newcomer to the wine business.

Piattelli Vineyards has received a number of industry awards since releasing its first vintage about 10 years ago. It has also been given top ratings from a number of industry publications including Wine Spectator—which chose one of Piattelli’s offerings among its 100 top wines for 2015—and others. Piattelli’s line includes a special run of 3,000 cases of artisanal wine made from hand-picked and hand-pressed grapes (rather than processed using machinery), fermented in French oak barrels and stored in bottles for 18 months before release.

Come listen to Jon's stories of business success and the great challenges and rewards associated with embracing risk.