Winemaker, proprietor, salesman, cellar rat.
photo by John Burgess/The Press Democrat
Born and raised in northern Bulgaria, a region with many millennia of winemaking history, Miro (Miroslav) Tcholakov was exposed to wine and winemaking at a very early age. His grandfather had long made the family supply of wine. As a boy, Miro was at his side during all phases of the process.
After completing his mandatory military service, he attended the Higher Institute of Agriculture in Plovdiv where he studied viticulture and enology. Soon after graduation, in the summer of 1990, he was chosen from hundreds of candidates to participate in an international exchange program in agriculture set up by The Future Farmers of America. After a few months in Napa, he was taken on as harvest intern at Sonoma County’s Dry Creek Vineyard. What was supposed to be a temporary harvest job turned into a nine-year position moving through the ranks from Cellar Master to Assistant Winemaker in 1997.
In 1998 Miro went to work as Winemaker for Trentadue Winery, which is still his “day job.” In addition to bringing more acclaim to the winery by creating world class award-winning wines, Miro’s duties include overseeing many custom crush operations for some renowned winemaker clients. In 2001, Miro became his own customer with his inaugural bottling of his Petite Sirah. Within a few weeks of its release, it received a fat 90 points and a “well-endowed” write-up from Robert Parker, Jr. in the Wine Advocate.