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Don Sebastiani & Sons Completes State-of-the-Art Napa Valley Winery Upgrade


Date: 11/28/12

Major investment transforms Steelbird Cellars into next generation facility

Don Sebastiani & Sons announced the completion of its winery upgrade. The new facility, now named “Steelbird Cellars,” has been transformed into a showcase property for the family company.

Named “Steelbird” for its proximity to the “birds of steel” that live at the nearby Napa Airport, the Sebastiani Family has made this facility its production home since the company’s inception in 2001.

“Our Napa Valley operation has always been an efficient, productive, yet frugal facility,” said Don Sebastiani Jr., president and CEO for Don & Sons. “The new Steelbird Cellars will truly be a showcase for our company, particularly for our business-to-business custom services.”

In addition to producing several of their own branded wines, Don & Sons offers custom services to other wine companies, including 750 ml glass bottling, bulk wine storage, and 3 liter bag-in-box filling on its newly installed line (June 2012), manufactured by Scholle Packaging, the pioneer of bag-in-box equipment. The bottling line itself can handle a variety of wine closures, including natural and synthetic cork, screwcap and Zork.

Recent notable custom clients at Steelbird Cellars include The Other Guys, DFV Wines and Naked Wines. Approximately 1.8 million cases are produced annually at the state-of-the-art facility.

“With the rapid growth of custom services over the past three years, we needed to build a better facility that would help us cultivate this expanding part of our business,” said John Nicolette, Director of Operations for Don & Sons. “Steelbird Cellars provides the perfect location for us to enhance our custom service offerings and strengthen our client relationships at the same time.”

The company is proud to be ISO 9001:2008 certified for efficiency and quality management and also HACCP certified for safety and cleanliness. To further enhance water quality, and to reduce the amount of chemicals used for cleaning and sanitization, it added a state of the art water filtering, softening and dechlorination system in June 2012.

One other major addition to the winery upgrade includes new motion-activated high-efficiency lighting. The new system is built with T5 Fluorescent Fixtures with integrated motion detection and has resulted in nearly $10,000 in savings per year with PG&E.

James Jeffrey Architects worked with Don & Sons to capture the essence of the company’s innovative spirit and forward-looking vision, while Sax and Roscoe Construction was the general contractor for the project. The renovations began in late 2011 and were completed in October 2012.

The christening of the family’s new winery coincides with the inaugural release of its Smoking Loon Steelbird 2011 vintage Unoaked Chardonnay. This wine was released nationally this summer.

About Don Sebastiani & Sons

Don Sebastiani & Sons is a family-owned wine negociant firm specializing in the marketing of upscale varietal wines. Principals Don Sebastiani and sons, Donny and August, are third and fourth generation California vintners and merchants. The company is headquartered in Sonoma Valley, and owns Steelbird Cellars, a winery in the Napa Valley. For more information on Don Sebastiani & Sons and their wines, please visit www.donandsons.com.

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