Henri Perriard passed away peacefully on Nov. 16, 2013, after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. He was 86 years old.
Henri was born May 12, 1927, in Rue, Switzerland, the youngest of seven children. Growing up on the family farm in rural Switzerland, Henri longed for adventure. He served his country as a member of the Swiss army and later took to the road with two of his closest friends, eventually immigrating to Montreal, Canada.
After doing odd jobs for a few years, they eventually made their way to California. Henri settled in the San Francisco Bay Area where he met his wife of 53 years, Helke, sun bathing at Aquatic Park. They married at the courthouse in Reno, Nev., and had two sons, Raymond Perriard of Fairfield, and Roger Perriard, of San Francisco.
Henri’s passion was wine making. He moved his family from San Francisco to Sonoma in the early ’70s and never left, calling the Valley “God’s country.” Henri tended to a small vineyard at home and pursued his passion of wine making while also establishing himself as a local restaurateur on the Plaza. The Plaza Restaurant offered customers a taste of home with its European charm and Swiss fondue on the menu.
Henri loved to try new things and over the years found himself brewing his own beer and even pressing his own olive oil in between winemaking. His love of good food and wine was something he continued to enjoy his entire life.
Henri is preceded in death by his parents, Albert and Rosa Perriard; and three brothers, Marcel, Rene and Fernand.
Henri is survived by his beloved wife, Helke; his sons, Raymond and Roger and their wives, Shelly and Marie; four grandchildren, Corinne, Vincent, Andre and Elissa; three sisters residing in Switzerland, Canesia, Maria and Cecilia, along with a large extended family including his dear friends who have been a second family here in Sonoma.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation (www.pdf.org) or Pets Lifeline (petslifeline.org).