Carmelo Anthony Is Teaming Up with a Rhone Winemaker for His Own Label

VII(N) The Seventh Estate will launch with a 2017 Chateauneuf-du-Pape this fall.

Carmelo Anthony
Photo: Rae Vaughn Lucas

From Busch Stadium to Coors Field, baseball and beer have a long established history. But with basketball, though you'll certainly see fans drinking beers, as far as the players are concerned, the NBA has become a league of wine enthusiasts.

LeBron James — arguably the NBA's biggest star — has been outspoken about his love of fine wine for quite some time, with Kevin Love comparing James' wine knowledge to that of a "supercomputer." But that's just the tip of the iceberg: Plenty of NBA players, both current and former, own their own wine brands, including the likes of Dwyane Wade, Yao Ming, Channing Frye, and CJ McCollum, who even owns his own vineyard.

Now, you can add Carmelo Anthony to that list. The ten-time NBA All-Star and current Los Angeles Laker revealed he's launching his own wine brand, VII(N) — The Seventh Estate — a project over three years in the making.

Carmelo Anthony
Andreas Branch

Created in partnership with Stéphane Usseglio, a third-generation French winemaker, the label will launch this fall with Oath of Fidelity, a 2017 Châteauneuf-du-Pape made from a blend of 90 percent Grenache and 10 percent Mourvèdre sourced primarily from 80-year-old vines at the Le Mourre du Gaud vineyard in the Southern Rhône region. The wine was fermented in concrete vats with indigenous yeast before being aged for two years in a mix of concrete and large oak barrels.

The resulting 14.5 percent ABV full-bodied red "with firm tannins" is described as offering "subtle notes of cherries, lavender, sage and peppercorns, combined with blonde tobacco and dried tea leaves" alongside the "flavors of smoked meats, dried fruits and river stones."

With celebrity wines, drinkers often wonder just how much the big name behind the brand was involved. And for VII(N), the brand says that "Carmelo fully immersed himself in the creation of this blend, making a concentrated effort to educate himself on all things wine, it's production and distribution, and more," and he entered into the project "with the utmost sincerity and respect for wine both as an art form and as an industry."

A mere 200 cases of Oath of Fidelity — a name inspired by the Haitian revolutionary François-Dominique Toussaint Louverture who helped lead his country to independence from France — were produced… so expect potential NBA salary-like prices once the wine is released. The brand says more details will be shared on the @viin7estate social platforms in the future.

Meanwhile, Anthony — who already spends plenty of time talking about wine through his series What's in Your Glass? — will also be joining CJ McCollum and Dwyane Wade at a sold-out panel moderated by Lobos tequila CEO Dia Simms during the 2022 Food & Wine Classic in Aspen. The wine-loving NBA trio is slated to discuss life beyond basketball and building legacy wine brands.

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