Trattore Estate Winery & Vineyard
Passion can be a funny thing. If you’re lucky, it finds you early and never lets go. As a child at the age of eight I fell in love with tractors. Not toy tractors, but the real tractors that were in use on my parents’ dairy farm. As soon as I could reach the pedal, I was driving them and soon thereafter, I was repairing them. When I was a young boy, my father would bring me to Dry Creek Valley where we used to graze cattle in the fertile pastures. I would tell my father as we would check on the cattle, that one day I wanted to live in Dry Creek Valley. I knew then, even at a very young age, that it was the most beautiful and bountiful valley I had ever seen. My passion for tractors led to a fascination with mechanics and technology that is still with me today. But after years in the technology industry, my deep-rooted love for tractors and Dry Creek Valley brought me and my family back to Sonoma County to what we now call Trattore Estate Vineyards.
Translated from the Italian word for tractor, “Trattore” felt like the suitable name for the land where my passions combine - on 40 acres of steep rolling hillsides in Dry Creek Valley, planted in vineyards and olive trees. This ranch is a tribute to my appreciation for the craftsmanship and enduring tradition of an iconic old red tractor that I brought over from Europe and is seen both on our wine label and working among the vines on our property today. It’s also where our commitment to rich farming traditions in the vineyard and attention to detail in the cellar come together to produce our collection of wines.
More than that, Trattore Estate Vineyards is a destination we look forward to sharing with guests who want to slow down and enjoy the glorious views of Dry Creek Valley over a glass of wine. Perhaps we can even interest you in a vineyard tour… from a tractor’s point of view.
Great Fruit to Great Wine.
Owner, Farmer and Tractor Enthusiast
Trattore Estate Wines
Farming on a tractor is not new to Tim. Trattore, which means tractor in Italian, was inspired by Tim’s love of tractors from a very young age. By the time he was eight years old Tim was not only driving tractors on his parent’s dairy farm in Healdsburg, California, but also tinkering with the engine under the hood. That love for tractors led to a passion for innovation. In fact, it was the mechanics behind those tractors that inspired Tim to study engineering at UC Davis and Stanford. For the past 25 years Tim has put that passion to work building successful businesses in music, TV and high tech industries. Now he has brought that spirit home to his roots and his estate vineyards in Dry Creek Valley. The little boy tinkering with tractors is still at the core of who Tim is today. It’s not uncommon to find Tim, tractor close at hand, working in the vineyard alongside his crew. Having made his first wine at age 17, Tim always knew he’d come back to Sonoma’s wine country. With firsthand experience through decades of farming, Tim has great respect for the hard work required to produce ultra-premium wines. It’s a philosophy he has taken to heart in everything he does.
Kerry Damskey, Winemaker
It’s no surprise that Kerry Damskey joined Trattore Estate as winemaker in 2009. His passion for minimal handling of fruit in the vineyard and blending of unique grape varieties for complex yet perfectly balanced wines is shared with vintner owner Tim Bucher. Seeing that Trattore Estate’s gorgeous vineyards are tucked within steep rolling hillsides planted to Zinfandel and Rhone varieties – his personal favorite – only enticed Kerry that much more. Today his 30 years of experience crafting world class wines translates to perfectionism in the vineyard and cellar at Trattore Estate. Yields are kept low and fruit is handpicked only at its peak. In the cellar Kerry brings a winemaking practice entrenched in tradition including the use of small bins, open top fermenters and punch downs by hand. As a result, this attention to detail comes through in each bottle of Trattore Estate wines. Kerry holds a B.S. in fermentation sciences from the University of California, Davis, is a graduate of the intensive program for small business at Stanford University School of Business, and is a candidate of the Institute of the Masters of Wine. Truly a winemaker of the world, Kerry is recognized on four continents for his acuity and focus in creating brilliant wines.
Dan Rotlisberger, Assistant Winemaker
Dan is a fifth generation Sonoma County farmer and third generation grape grower whose roots in farming date back to the early 20th century. From the very moment he could reach the clutch on a tractor, he was put to work in his family’s vineyards in Alexander Valley. Those early experiences in grape growing and an overall love of the wine industry have shaped Dan’s passion for growing grapes of distinction. Dan coupled his farming background with degrees in viticulture and enology from California State University, Fresno and during his senior year in college was named the outstanding undergraduate achiever for the viticulture and enology department. An opportunity to continue his studies in Switzerland, Italy, and France further confirmed his drive for making wine. Dan brings this passion to Trattore Estate Wines where he directs ranch operations and works closely with winemaker Kerry Damskey. With a keen dedication to sustainable practices, along with a deep-rooted belief that wine is made in the vineyard first, Dan works hard to keep yields low in order to produce the highest quality fruit.
Special Offers for ZAP Members
Wine Purchase Discount at Winery:
10% on cases, 2 case maximum
15% on bottles, 24 bottles minimum
4791 Dry Creek Road
Healdsburg, CA 95448
ZAP Member Since: 2010
Winery Location Region: Northern Sonoma
Cases Produced: 3000
Winery Open for Tasting: Yes
Winery Charges for Tasting: No
Retail Sales at Winery: Yes
Offers Online Sales: Yes
Has a Wine Club: Yes
* SEVEN GREAT REASONS TO JOIN
1. Six bottles of wine (two shipments per year). Average cost is between $120 and $150.*
2. Receive a combination of our red and white wines from our estate collection. If you love variety, our French Rhone style wines and signature Zinfandels offer a choice for all occasions.
3. Members enjoy 15% off all wines including 10% off all gift merchandise in our tasting room including Dry Creek Olive Company gift items.**
4. Members-only invitations to special events such as the Grammy Foundation Annual House Concert held at our winery.
5. Gain access to private tours of our vineyards including an olive oil tasting at our winery while enjoying amazing views of Dry Creek Valley.
6. 50% off Trattore vineyard Guest House accommodations. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for weekend reservations.
– Relaxed living space with fully-equipped kitchen and dining area
– Two bedrooms (one king bed and one queen), one bath
– Deck overlooking Trattore Vineyards, Dry Creek Valley & Mt Saint Helena
7. Membership is Free! No cancellation fees.
Offers Winery Tours: By Appt. Only
Offers Vineyard Tours: By Appt. Only
Food Available at Winery: No
Has a Picnic Area: Yes
* Timber Crest Farms is coop location with bocce ball, picnic areas and Bruno's food truck. Our Tasting Room also has a patio seating area.
Offers a Meet the Winemaker Tour: By Appt. Only
* Call us for more information (707) 431-7200 or email at email@example.com. We'd be happy to talk with you about winemaker tours.
Offers a Barrel Tasting: By Appt. Only
* We will offer barrel tastings throughout the year. Call us for more information (707) 431-7200 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additional Tasting Room:
7700 Dry Creek Road
Geyserville, CA 95441