Gallo buys Napa Valley’s Massican
E & J Gallo has announced the purchase of Massican, a unicorn with its white-wine-only brand in Napa Valley, where cabernet dominates the landscape. The purchase price was not disclosed.
This purchase comes on the heels of Gallo’s purchase of Rombauer, another Napa Valley winery and one of the most popular chardonnay producers in the U.S.
Founded by Dan Petroski, Massican produces Mediterranean-inspired wines, some from rare Italian grapes like Ribolla Gialla, Tocai Friulano and Falanghina. The wines in the Massican lineup are high in acid and low in alcohol, a counterpoint to the richer style Rombauer’s chardonnay profile.
Petroski does not own vineyards, a winery or a tasting room, so the sale is of the brand and the remaining 2022 inventory. The boutique winery produced 7,500 cases in 2022 and expects to bottle 10,000 cases this year. As part of the deal, the founder will continue in his role as winemaker for at least five years.
Launching the brand in 2009, Petroski was inspired by Italian wines, and his brand met with success. Three wines from his inaugural lineup were included in the French Laundry’s wine list.
Petroski said selling at this time is a natural progression to expand the brand’s reach.
“Massican has been a one-person operation since its inception,” he said. “In order to grow and achieve my objectives, I began to realize I needed help. Gallo was the right partner at the right time in Massican’s evolution.”
Gallo found Massican appealing, Petroski said, because there’s a joint goal of bringing this brand to a wider audience of wine drinkers.
“Massican has been Napa Valley’s only white wine winery since the day it was founded in 2009,” Petroski said. “The style of our wines has bucked a few trends in the arc of California wines in the last 20 years, and that has been appealing to both consumers and trade customers.”
You can reach wine writer Peg Melnik at 707-521-5310 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @pegmelnik.