In the ultimate example of following your market, Fess Parker moved on to making wine. And his low-priced Rhone style wine even has his face on it. It’s the ultimate Baby Boomer gift. You had the cap. Your parents bought you the lunchbox. Now get the wine.
Not that Fess Parker was a dilettante. His wines are winning awards and getting great notices, even from that ultimate wine arbiter, Robert Parker (who is not related, but probably secretly wishes he was cool enough to be!). Fess Parker’s son, Eli, the chief winemaker, was named 2006’s Andre Tchelistcheff Winemaker of the Year at the San Francisco International Wine Competition. It should be noted that, in this age of fallen heroes, Fess Parker never did anything to tarnish his hero image, staying happily married to the same woman for over 50 years and producing a close and loving family that included eleven grandchildren and one great-grandchild who, according to CNN, spent as much of Fess’s last days with him as they could.
Eli, incidentally, is more formally Fess Elisha Parker III. Every generation, I reckon, ought to have a Fess.