FEINBERG--Herbert. Herbert Feinberg, passed away peacefully at his home in New York City on September 6, 2020 at age 94. Herb was born in Brooklyn on June 20, 1926 to Dorothy and Harry Feinberg. Herb graduated from PS152 and then Midwood High School in 1944. He served in the US Army Air Corps from 1944-1946. After serving his country he graduated from University of Illinois in 1949 with a B.S. in Marketing and Management and a minor in Accounting. Upon his college graduation, Herb joined his father's company, Monsieur Henri Wines, Ltd. Herb and his brother Maurice expanded the company into importing wines from Europe. After his father passed, his brother Frank joined the company and Herb and his beloved brothers owned and ran Monsieur Henri Wines. Herb was instrumental in developing the company's two most important products. In 1964 at the New York World's Fair, in the Spanish Pavilion, Herb observed the popularity of the sangria that was being made with his company's Spanish wines. He immediately approached the company's Spanish wine supplier to work with them to produce a bottled sangria that could be imported to the US. This was how Yago Sangria was developed by Monsieur Henri; it became the most popular sangria in the US. In 1958 Monsieur Henri began importing Stolichnaya into the US from the Soviet Union. In 1963 Herb traveled to Moscow to negotiate and sign the first of several contracts-in- perpetuity which granted Monsieur Henri the exclusive rights to Stolichnaya in the US and the Caribbean. In 1971 when PepsiCo wanted to sell Pepsi Cola in the USSR, there was no freely traded Russian currency, only the barter system, and in return the USSR wanted Pepsi to import Stolichnaya to the US. Given that the exclusive rights were already owned by Herb and his brothers, PepsiCo ended up buying Monsieur Henri and Herb and his brothers became major shareholders of PepsiCo. As part of that deal, Herb bought back Hudson Valley Wine Co., which his estate still owns. Since the sale of his company, Herb invested in, owned, and operated many businesses. He also was an active and generous philanthropist, with perhaps his capstone project the establishment of The Herbert & Sandi Feinberg Interventional Cardiology Heart/ValveCenter at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital. Additionally Herb established the Herbert Feinberg Family Foundation for his family to carry on his mission and help others after his death. Herb had a tremendous zest for life and an amazing sense of humor. He also had a passion for travel, he and his beloved wife Sandi were always traveling to all points and ports around the world (and on The World). Herb also gained great joy in sharing this passion for travel with his children and grandchildren, and planned and took them on amazing family trips all around the world. While Herb also loved his global travels, he also loved a good trip to Costco (any Costco in any town he visited) and its hot dogs. Every one of his seven grandchildren delighted in always finding very large containers of Costco candy in the closet in his bedroom. Nothing was more important to Herb than his family. Herb is survived by his loving wife of 31 years, Sandi, his adored children, sons Mark and Harry (Pam), and daughters Candice (Feinberg) and Tara (Lipton), his loving seven grandchildren: Alexandra (Kevin), Michele (Jonny), Holden, Landon, Piper, Noah, and Walker, and his two great-grandchildren. Herb was predeceased by his oldest son, Michael. The family will have a private graveside service. A memorial celebration will be planned and held at a later time when Herb's friends and family can safely gather and celebrate his life.
Published in New York Times on Sep. 8, 2020.