Gary Miller
August 29, 2012 | Gary Miller

The story of the Backward L

The story of the Miller Wine Works logo:


The wonderful story of the backward L.

Ted Miller, my Grandfather, was born in Olean, NY in 1900.  He was a jack-of-all-trades from gunsmith to tool and die maker, with a keen interest in steam engines and family history.  While digging around his family roots, he made the pleasant discovery of learning that some of his distant relatives had worked the Narrow Gauge Trestle in Rock City; a project which began in 1877.  Steam engines were part of his blood and his passion grew more profound with travels on-board these very trains to visit railroad museums in the Northeast.

Sharing his love of trains with his grandsons, Ted crafted train tracks and a surrounding town in his basement.  This town of “Millerville” had it all; houses, hotels, stores, farms, animals and ponds. Incorporating the name “Miller” into the landscape, he cleverly turned the first L backward to formulate opposing railroad rails, making the name part of the track.

Listening to stories of trains and travels, I would sit on my Grandfather’s knee.  This was where I first tasted Port.  Grandpa's jug was kept under the kitchen sink.  Each evening, he would pour himself a glass, rest in his favorite chair and smoke his pipe.  It was there on my Grandfather’s lap that from time to time, I would be allowed a small sip.

Many years later, I was delighted to discover three Portuguese grape varietals growing in the Napa Valley – Touriga National, Souzau and Tinta Cao.  In tribute to my grandfather, this handcrafted cuvee was christened Teodoro Port.

To date there have been three releases of our Teodoro Port as a tribute to Grandpa Ted. Ted Miller lives today in our love of Port and that backward L!


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