Custom microcrusher buys Napa winery

[caption id="attachment_95862" align="aligncenter" width="500"] The production floor at The Napa Juice Box, as seen in late 2012. (credit: The Napa Juice Box)[/caption]

SONOMA -- The Wine Foundry bought The Napa Juice Box custom-crush winery in south Napa, giving the "microcrush" custom vintner formerly known as Crushpad additional customers and a new home all its own.

The deal gives The Wine Foundry a place to grow while offering full control to its "hands-on" clientele and a place to host client special events in the facility tasting room, according to Steve Ryan, general manager. It has been operating out of the 30,000-square-foot Opal Moon Winery on Eighth Street East south of Sonoma since Tiburon-based CastleGate Capital Advisors acquired the assets of Crushpad and relaunched the business in August 2012.

The Wine Foundry on Tuesday purchased five industrial condominiums totaling just more than 12,000 square feet at 45 Enterprise Ct. in south Napa as well as equipment and the custom-winemaking business for an undisclosed amount. The seller was Juice Box Realty, LLC, managed by Barbara and Ira Goldberg, owners of Juice Box as well as the Edict wine brand.

"Our model is for our clients to be very hands-on in the winemaking process, and we really needed to have our own space to control our destiny and not have shared space,"  Mr. Ryan said.

The Goldbergs had sold the Edict label and casegoods to Appellation Trading Company, but were planning to continue making a new family brand and serve custom-winemaking clients at The Napa Juice Box, according to Ira Goldberg. The family retained 2013 bulk wine for Edict in the brand sale and will bottle that under the new label, which is still in the approval process, he said.

The property had been quietly marketed for sale. The Wine Foundry learned of it when mutual friends at both operations met at a wine-tasting event. A few days later, a letter of intent to buy the property, equipment and custom-winemaking contracts was sent, Mr. Ryan said.

The Goldbergs were looking to complete the sale by the end of July, the close of their family investment company's fiscal year, Mr. Goldberg said.

The Wine Foundry will work with existing custom-crush customers there and has about 50 tons of uncommitted crush capacity, Mr. Ryan said. That could be filled this year. Additional space is being considered next door at 55 Enterprise Ct.


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