We get it: You love wine. You count the days, hours, and minutes between your long wine country weekends. And we're guessing that somewhere on your wish list is the idea of satisfying your cabernet cravings 24/7—owning and managing a winery of your very own.
We're here to help you out with your wine wishes!
We headed to the top vino meccas of the U.S. and found some turnkey operations with tasting rooms, production facilities (tanks, barrels, and fermentation space), and in-site living quarters—plus acres of vineyards already planted with grapes. Because most grapes take three years to mature—earning zero revenue during that time—you’ll be one step ahead by buying into mature crops.
But unlike buying a house, purchasing a vineyard has nothing to do with the actual buildings on it.
“It’s all about the land,” explains Salvatore Rombi, a listing agent in Carmel Valley, CA, and the owner and winemaker of Rombi Wines in that same appellation. “You can’t force great wine from poor soil.”
In other words, push aside items on your wish list like granite countertops and a walk-in closet, because the good news is that you can add those later. But you can’t create good terroir.
It’s also advantageous to look beyond more established wine regions, especially in Napa and Sonoma.
“The process of acquiring a permit has become increasingly more difficult here," says Mark Stevens, a listing agent with Wine Country Real Estate in Sebastopol, CA, in Sonoma County. "And over the next five to 10 years, the process will get even more challenging and much more time-intensive.”
But keep this in mind: Even the best places don't get snapped up as quickly as a well-priced home in a hot market.
“Very rarely do wineries get sold immediately after they are listed," Stevens says. "Finding the right buyer to purchase a winery ... can be a hard fit and doesn't really follow the residential real estate market.”
With those caveats in mind, pour a glass of well-chilled chardonnay and check out these seven wineries for sale.
7970 Vineyard Dr, Paso Robles, CA
Price: $2.99 million Tasting notes: This stunner, Poalillo Vineyards, recently landed on the market. It offers 4.5 acres of dry-farmed zinfandel planted on Paso’s West Side plus a barn, guesthouse, and original outbuildings dating to 1898. The heart of the home is the kitchen, which features two dishwashers, Viking double-convection oven, and custom island.
11777 Highway 238, Jacksonville, OR
Price: $10 million Tasting notes: Operating as Red Lily Vineyards since 2003, this 250-acre Rogue Valley spread is near world-class hiking in national forests. A 2,600-square-foot tasting room, a 4,700-square-foot main house, and a guest house are also included. Spanish varietals are planted here, so the next owner already has an edge over the competition (there aren’t many tempranillo producers on the West Coast). About 5,000 cases are produced each year by the current owners.
Cachagua Road, Carmel Valley, CA
Price: $9.5 million Tasting notes: Heller Estate is a rare certified-organic vineyard and has been making wine without pesticides since 1996. (The grapes were planted in 1970.) Currently on its second owner, the property includes 983 acres (of which 97 are vineyards) and a six-bedroom, six-bath house. There's also an outdoor pool with vineyard views.
1475 Kubli Rd, Grants Pass, OR
Price: $7.8 million Tasting notes: Dating to 1972, Troon Vineyard—tucked into the Applegate Valley AVA—manages its 32 acres of vineyards using organic methods. Annual production fluctuates between 10,000 and 12,000 cases, and several of its wines have scored 90 points or more, including the syrah, vermentino, and riesling. A two-bedroom, two-bath home is also included.
6687 Sonoma Hwy, Kenwood, CA
Price: $7.75 million Tasting notes: Annadel Estate Winery is located on precious real estate in Kenwood, an area of Sonoma County dubbed “Valley of the Moon.” Nearly 9 acres are farmed with grapes (including chardonnay and zinfandel), and an additional 5 acres produce flowers. The 33-acre estate also features a darling 1880s farmhouse, tasting room within a vintage barn, and three more residences. The spread's current permit allows a production of 5,000 cases a year.
35040 SW Unger Rd, Cornelius, OR
Price: $4.95 million Tasting notes: New to the market, Ardiri Winery & Vineyard—currently producing 4,000 cases annually—features 15 acres of planted vines (mostly pinot noir) in Oregon’s Chehalem Mountains AVA. The LEED-certified house (with two bedrooms and five baths) comes with a chef's kitchen. The tasting room offers indoor and outdoor seating, along with a fire pit.
2860 Ranchita Canyon Rd, San Miguel, CA
Price: $2.9 million Tasting notes: J&J Cellars would be a great business for a lover of sultry red wines. Petite sirah, merlot, and zinfandel are currently planted on a 30-acre vineyard. Live in the two-bedroom apartment until you build your dream house. A huge outdoor patio (partly covered) makes this a popular spot for events.