Take Two®

News and culture through the lens of Southern California. Hosted by A Martínez

Meet Marc Mondavi, well-known vintner and self-proclaimed 'water witch'

by Take Two®

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In this photo taken Thursday, Feb. 13, 2014, proprietor Marc Mondavi demonstrates dowsing with "diving rods" to locate water at the Charles Krug winery in St. Helena, Calif. As water supplies shrink during California’s historic drought, vineyard owners and other farmers are looking to an ancient, yet scientifically discredited, source for finding water: dowsers. Also known as water witches, dowsers use so-called “divining rods” made of copper or wood, pendulums or other items to find water deep underground using nothing more than their own intuition. Even though dowsing hasn’t held up under scientific scrutiny, according to U.S. Geological Survey, it remains a popular national past-time, especially in drought-stricken areas. Eric Risberg/AP

California did get a bit of rain recently, but drought remains a persistent problem. And while no one can make it rain, farmers can try to look for more water underground.

To do that, many have been relying on a practice known as "dowsing" or "water witching."  

Marc Mondavi is a self-proclaimed water witch. A member of the famous winemaking Mondavi clan, he's also a vintner, and has created a line of wines called "The Divining Rod," a nod to his other line of work. Thanks to the drought, Mondavi has been getting plenty of calls lately.

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