Who hasn’t ever accompanied a glass of wine with his favorite CD? Without a doubt, music and wine have often gone hand in hand. However, this goes even further in the case of Jean Leon. Would you like to discover the relationship between Jean Leon and the world of music? We’ll tell you below!
Ceferino Carrión, known as Jean Leon and founder of these wineries, led a special life. He was born in Santander in 1928, son of a merchant seaman and with a family persecuted during the Civil War. At the age of 19, he ventured with three other friends and they went to France, crossing the Pyrenees on foot.
After living for some time in Paris, he managed to stow away on a ship bound for the United States. It was upon arriving in America when he changed his name to Jean Leon. It was at this point that his American dream began.
In New York, Jean Leon found work as a dishwasher in the executive dining rooms of Rockefeller Center while also working as a cab driver. This was his first contact with executives, politicians and famous artists of the time. A job he loved. A year later, Jean Leon decided to try his luck in Los Angeles, the city where he met Frank Sinatra and which linked him to the world of music.
The friendship between Jean Leon and Frank Sinatra
Jean Leon always kept the uncertainty about how he met Frank Sinatra for the first time. Some stories tell that the friendship began thanks to a chance meeting in a cab.
One night, Frank Sinatra got into Jean Leon’s cab and, after an entertaining conversation, he offered him a job as a waiter in his restaurant Villa Capri, which changed his life forever. Jean Leon combined his night work as a waiter at the Villa Capri with working as a cab driver during the day.
At the restaurant he forged friendships with other Hollywood stars.
But what really link Jean Leon with this renowned musician was that, thanks to him, Frank Sinatra was freed from jail.
Frank Sinatra and his partner Joe DiMaggio, Marilyn Monroe’s partner at the time, were accused of chasing and beating an alleged lover of the actress. However, Jean Leon testified that both had spent the night at the Villa Capri.
Jean Leon’s discretion and professionalism was rewarded. He soon became one of Sinatra’s most trusted assistants, who taught him how to move in those environments and where he would meet many stars of the golden age of cinema, such as Natalie Wood, Grace Kelly or James Dean, among many others.
Jean Leon opens his restaurant La Scala
The relationship between Jean Leon and Frank Sinatra cooled down when the former decided to open his own restaurant in 1956, La Scala restaurant. His restaurant became the center of the social life of Hollywood stars.
In fact, Marilyn Monroe’s last dinner was from La Scala, as she asked Jean Leon, her favorite restaurateur, to personally deliver a pasta dish to her home in Brentwood, Hollywood, just a few hours before she passed away.
However, their relationship was never completely lost, and this was demonstrated during Ronald Reagan’s inauguration celebrations, when Sinatra dedicated a toast to Jean Leon.
Jean Leon and wine
It was in his restaurant La Scala where Jean Leon conceived the idea of creating his own wine in order to achieve a wine that would be at the level of his diner guests.
The ideal land he found for his vineyards was neither in California nor in France, it was in Spain, in his native country, in a unique land in the Penedés. And this is where the story of our wines begins.
Jean Leon in the bookstores
The life of the founder of Jean Leon has not gone unnoticed. Martí Gironell documented his life in the novel La fuerza de un destino, with which he was the winner of the Ramon Llull Award in 2018. In the book, the author tell these and other anecdotes from Jean Leon’s life.