Rosa d’Oro Vineyards is a family-owned and operated vineyard and winery that specializes in Italian varietal wine, and now, global cuisine. We started in 2001 with a couple acres of grapes and a dream that has evolved steadily into a small and steady winery. The next step is clearly a dedicated food program that allows us to learn and explore while sharing food and wine history with our community.
A little over a year ago we began to cook a bit in our tasting room. First there were small appetizer parties to celebrate new releases, and those quickly grew into 4-course wine pairing menus. At first there were only 12 guests, then we had to buy more chairs. At 25 guests we went to two seatings. Then there were 50 reservations for the Flight Night series and we expanded to two nights, and then 80 people meant two seatings for both nights. All on one induction burner. We want to continue growing and sharing our best with you, and at this point we need your help.
What we need.
Though the goals for our wine are lofty, our Kickstarter goal is modest: to expand the kitchen in our tasting room into a functional cooking space. This involves upgrades such as plumbing, electrical, and structural work to install a hood system, fans, propane stove, fire suppression and an extra sink to meet foodservice restaurant code. The current bid for the installation and upgrade work alone, before including any equipment such as a stove or the hood itself, is $29,000. This is the difficult part before the fun begins. The good part is that we have been in our space since 2005 and we are well established here. It is a bank from the 1920’s which is pretty unique, and it is a very friendly and communal space - perfect for sharing food. Except for the kitchen it is ready to go as is and we have already established a unique dimension few other wineries can offer.
From the Chef.
Cooking has definitely been an adventure for me. As a farm kid I was fascinated by French culinary shows on Public Television but it wasn’t until I was finishing college that I made the leap into the restaurant industry. The chefs I worked for were all very different, allowing me to develop my own sense of depth as well as getting in touch with my creative and exploratory side. Becoming a winemaker has been a natural step forward and now I am very excited to add food back into the mix having grown a little older and wiser, and with very few limitations.
We have already developed a reputation for the range of our food. It is refined rustic with an eye toward historical and cultural exploration. It is based in Italian/Mediterranean themes that naturally accompany Italian varietal wines but we have also explored Thai, French, Morrocan and Mexican menus as well and I would like to explore a few in historical modes like Ancient Roman, Renaissance-based and even American Colonial menus. This is where I get excited - sharing lost traditions and history and approaching them honestly and humbly. The food is intellectually based, but in a quiet way. We will also be exploring regional salumi and charcuterie and other Slow Food elements. Everything has a story to tell. These are paired with our wines that have an immediacy and authenticity to them that demands something hearty and soulful with some polish and delicacy. It is necessarily local and seasonally driven with honest and immediate flavors and textures that bring fine-dining technique down to earth for everyone. Sometimes a little modern gastronomy finds its way in too, but always in a supporting role. Flavor and story are always first.
This has all been one big journey for me. If you consider helping, it is probably because you appreciate adventure and journeys and might want to join ours for a bit and see where it leads. Feel free to check my bio as well, and thanks. - Pietro
A bit of history.
Nick Buttitta started Rosa d'Oro in 2001 with a history in farming, a couple acres of grapes and an interest in Italian varietal wines. In 2005 his daughter Livia began managing the tasting room and in 2008 Nick's son Pietro joined as winemaker after a successful culinary career that included Michelin-starred Terra in Napa Valley. Today Rosa d'Oro Vineyards is one of the leading Italian varietal wineries in California and one of very few entirely family owned and operated. You can visit us at www.rosadorowine.com, on Facebook , or our blog.
What if we exceed our fundraising goals?
In the (knock on wood) event that we actually overfund our goal, the finished kitchen will run about $40,000. Any overage would go directly into closing that gap. Should we reach that, a dishwasher or a salamander is high on the priority list.
Risks and challenges
As with any kitchen project, expenses can multiply instantly with unforseen complications. Our fundraising goal is modest in that it does not cover all costs, not by a long shot, but is focused on getting up and running with the basics as fast as possible. We also need to remain open during construction and continue our vineyard and winery work. We hope to have passed all inspections by the end of August.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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