Ralph & Bonnie Wallen remember

“Captain Robert” & “Best Mate” Ralph Wallen, Tahoe, 2011. J Robello photo

written by Wayne Mooers

The Boatique Winery offers a very special collection of beautiful antique and classic wooden boats, and also their award winning fine wines. There is no other like boat and wine collection for the public to enjoy! Ralph Wallen, the winery’s project manager, and his wife Bonnie played a major role in helping the late Robert Mount (1943~2020) and his family put their winery and classic boat collection “dreams” into a reality.

Ralph remembers first meeting Robert Mount in 2010; “It was all those ACBS activities and our common passions for old classic boats that “introduced” us. Yet it was later all about building the winery and the boat collection adventures that bonded us all together.”

Ralph also remembers: “Robert already had acquired 5 classic boats when I met him, and when he purchased the winery property in 2011 and Van Dam Boats completed the “secret” MADELEINE boat built for his wife Madeleine that same year, his day dreams of combining a winery with his boat collection became a reality and it all started happening!

“In 2005 I completed restoring my 1959 Chris Craft Silver Arrow which was awarded Best Chris Craft at the Tahoe Concours that same year. Thus, I was honored when Robert wanted to have my QUIVER in his collection too, and equally honored he then asked me to help him manage the winery build and also his boat collection. Yes, the old boats
brought us together for most likely some special reasons. Robert was a gentleman and pleasure to be with to the very end. He will always be remembered. Here is an overview of his boat collection.”

While MADELEINE is certainly the center
stage “Queen” at the winery display Ralph admits,
each of the boats are special in their own way. Below
is a summary list of the boats, along with some short
highlights he remembers about them.

13 Boatique Winery Boats on Display
Enjoy Boatique video boat tour at
www.boatiquewines.com /about us/boats

1936 Ditchburn, 23.5’ LEGACY
Our favorite smooth riding guest boat!
1938 Greavette Streamliner, 24’ CURVACEOUS
Rare, Canadian built, Van Dam restoration
1947 Greavette Streamliner, 22’ TRAVELER
Rare, Canadian built, Van Dam restoration
1947 Chris Craft Custom, 20’ FOXY LADY
A popular family classic “user” boat
1948 Western Fairliner Torpedo, 17’ STUDEBACKER
Northwest Classic restoration / detailing
1949 Ventnor Deluxe Runabout, 19’ LA FIN
Van Dam Dan restoration, 2011
1955 Chris Craft Cobra, 21’ TOUCH OF GLASS
ACBS South Tahoe Show, 2015,
Boat of the Year
Tahoe Concours 2016,
Overall Best of Show
A Van Dam, Wallen, Lahti, et all restoration
1959 Chris Craft Silver Arrow, 19’ QUIVER
A Wallen restoration, 2005
Best Chris Craft of Show, Tahoe 2005
1963 Wickens, 18’ RACE BOAT
A Paul Mehus restoration / presentation.
1964 Amphicar, Model 770, 7 knots water / 70
MPH highway. Robert said one morning, ,
“ I need one of these”!
1976 Serenella Venetian Water Taxi, 30’ ROBERTO,
Acquired, 2016, a final Bauman, Lahti,
Wallen restoration honoring their friend,
Robert A Mount.
1998 Van Dam, 33’ custom build, ALPHA Z
Acquired 2015. A very fast
& very contemporary boat.
2011 Van Dam, 29’ custom build, MADELEINE
“Our Winery Queen,” a gift to my
Madeleine. A 1920’s era design.

Boatique Winery Celebration, 2015 W Mooers photo
Christmas 2020. A Boatique, “A Classic Dream Land” W Mooers photo
Touch of Glass is “in demand” and a popular award winner at the shows. W Mooers photo