Style Rider, Dean Vincent Bordigioni

Style Rider aims to document the world’s most stylish motorcycle riders, be they riders of classic, custom or cafe racer steeds. Focused on the intersection of motorcycle culture with individual style, here we speak to winemaker Dean Vincent Bordigioni about riding 100 plus-year-old Harley’s across America wearing period-correct clothes.

Name: Dean Vincent Bordigioni

Residence: Sonoma Valley, Ca and Waimea, HI. 

Occupation: Winemaker, Winery Owner

Today’s ride: 1923 Harley-Davidson JS; the S is for a sidecar. I purchased it from a collection, broke it down and restored the bike for the Cannonball. It has crossed the US twice, winning Class II in the 2014 Motorcycle Cannonball.

Describe your style: Independent Motorcyclist.

Favourite items: There are a couple of items that are special to me. A bespoke riding coat made from 1940s era Italian wool. My grandmother was a seamstress in New York, and I found the bolt of cloth in her drawer. My 1914 Harley-Davidson single-cylinder, single-speed, belt drive champion; and a pair of bespoke riding boots from Al’s Attire in North Beach. Knee-high is one thing, the wingtips killed it. 

Next purchase: Electric.

Style icon/inspiration: Brando, My Nonno, Adolfo di Faveri, and my dad, Vincent Bordigioni.

Best local ride: The Sonoma Coast. I love riding next to the Pacific, with its salty air and cool dampness.

Best distance ride: San Francisco to Tierra del Fuego, or cross country on a 100-year-old plus motorcycle. 

Tip for stylish motorcycle riding: Combine safety, style and the necessity of being a gentleman. Never look, act or be a tough guy. 

Next motorcycle trip: Another Motorcycle Cannonball to defend my #1 plate. Unfortunately, I may have to bow out because of Covid-19, if they don’t cancel this year. I’m ready, the bike is willing, but things will have to change and change fast for me to compete. If not the Cannonball, I will ride to San Francisco for a House Campari at Mario’s, lunch at Il Polio, and then relax at Ocean Beach. 

Why do you like riding? The Why of riding has changed a lot over the years, and yet it stays much the same. The change is the memories I have with the different bikes I own or different places and cultures I have experienced on a motorcycle. The same is the ‘little kid’ feeling that I am getting away with something.

Photo credit: all photos by Thomas Burke & Others and supplied by Dean Vincent Bordigioni due to Covid19 lockdown. If you are interested in contributing to Style Rider, get in touch at dennis@thebetterlivingindex.com.

Style Rider book to be published in late 2020: To register for pre-orders, email dennis@thebetterlivingindex.com, and we will notify you of pricing as the book approaches publication.