NBA players have certain luxuries many of us do not, such as millions of dollars to throw towards creating their own wine and the brand behind it. It seems like hundreds of athletes and celebrities have dabbled with fermentation grapes before, but these are the best NBA players with their own wine brand that’s succeeding.
The former NBA big man won a championship by riding on LeBron James’s coattails, but LeBron hasn’t had a hand in Frye’s success as a wine connoisseur other than drinking it. Frye is a partner at Chosen Family Wines, dispelling the notion that athletes and celebrities only jump into the wine business for the vanity of it.
The New York Knicks guard doesn’t have a wine brand per se, but he is passionate about his grapes. Hart is a big fan of the wine business and showcases that on social media. He gave $10,000 to the victims of the Napa Valley fires in 2020, and he collaborated with Wine Access to create the Diversity in Wine Scholarship program, which provides members of underrepresented communities with a once-in-a-lifetime chance to train under the tutelage of wine industry leaders and earn certification from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust.
Hart’s former teammate in Portland, C.J. McCollum, took to the wine business after he and his wife sipped on a 2012 Walter Scott Pinot bottle. After that, he knew he wanted to follow in the footsteps of several of his peers and dip his toes in the industry.
McCollum knew the importance of a strong team, leading him to team with Adelsheim Vineyard winemaker Gina Hennen from the beginning. Hennen’s experience and McCollum’s passion led to McCollum Heritage 91.
Although his playing days of being one of the best shooting guards to play the game are over, Dwyane Wade has other ventures taking up his time. Wade and the well-known Napa Valley winemaker Jayson Pahlmeyer formed Wade Cellars in 2014. Dwyane Wade, moved by the luxurious Cabernet Sauvignons produced in this illustrious American winemaking area, launched his wine label, which has come to represent approachability and variety in the wine world.
The current Wade Cellars portfolio includes the flagship Wade Cabernet Sauvignon, which comes from some of Napa’s most renowned vineyards, and the Three by Wade wines, which provide a more accessible introduction to varietals like Rosé, Chenin Blanc, and Cabernet Sauvignon from vineyards in some of California’s most revered wine regions.
Carmelo Anthony may have never gotten his illustrious championship ring on the court, but his work has been championship-caliber. The recently retired and 10-time NBA All-Star has been working on his wine label, VII(N) — The Seventh Estate.
The 2017 Oath of Fidelity Châteauneuf-du-Pape is a product of a collaboration between the label’s creators and Stéphane Usseglio, a third-generation French winemaker. The wine underwent a natural yeast fermentation in concrete vats, then aged for two years in a combination of concrete and big oak barrels.
The best NBA players with their own wine brand prove that life doesn’t stop when that smooth jumper goes by the wayside. And what better way to spend time once it’s time to put away the sneakers than sipping on wine?