Martha Clara Vineyards co-founder Robert W. Entenmann died yesterday at his home in Lauderdale by the Sea, Florida. He was 88 years old.

Entenmann, a former chairman of the bakery founded by his grandfather in Brooklyn, bought a potato farm in Riverhead to raise thoroughbred horses after his family sold the baking company in 1978. He decided to try his hand at growing wine grapes and in 1995 planted planted 18 acres of vitis vinifera grapes, according to the Martha Clara website.

He named the vineyard after his mother, Martha Clara Entenmann and ran the vineyard and winery with his daughter, Jacqueline.

The vineyard and horse farm today encompass more than 200 acres, with 113 of them planted in grape vines. The property, including the winery buildings and Entenmann residence, has been on the market for sale for at least two years. Its current listing price is $20 million.

He is survived by his daughter Jacqueline, his son Robert, his brother Charles, and his former wife Mary.

Visitation will be on Monday, Sept. 19 from 2 to 4:30 and 7 to 9 p.m. at Overton Funeral Home, 172 Main St., Islip. A funeral service will take place Tuesday, Sept. 20 at 10:30 a.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church in Islip. Interment will follow at Oakwood Cemetery in Bay Shore.

The survival of local journalism depends on your support.
We are a small family-owned operation. You rely on us to stay informed, and we depend on you to make our work possible. Just a few dollars can help us continue to bring this important service to our community.
Support RiverheadLOCAL today.

Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.