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White Crane Winery
Livermore Valley Winery and Tasting Room
Napa Valley & Sonoma Wine Tasting Tours
The tiny unmarked building in the middle of the vineyard is the tasting room. Walk around to the front, and inside find a funky, playful room—barrels, twinkling lights, flashing plastic grapes. Fitting for owner Nick Nardolillo, who is as much about music and good times as making wines.
After working in the Air Force on intelligence projects at the National Security Agency, earning two teaching credentials, and running a successful Bay Area advertising agency for twenty years, Nick decided to return to his Italian roots and make wine. He bought a vineyard on Greenville Road. There he hosts concerts, parties, weddings, even grape stomping.
Half of Nick’s wines are estate grown. He goes for maximum flavor, leaving a considerable amount of fruit behind. He cold soaks his grapes for a week to maximize flavor and soften tannins, and ages his wines in barrels of 30 to 35 percent new oak plus neutral oak (a combination of French, Hungarian and American oak). Gold medals in the tasting room attest to his winemaking success.
Nick found his winery’s name one evening when a white crane swooped overhead in the moonlight and landed on a fence post.
Amenities: Wine club, summer concerts, weddings, B&B, grape stomping