Since the early 1900’s the Rafanelli family has been growing grapes and making wine in the Dry Creek Valley. Four generations later they are still keeping with the tradition, growing premium grapes and producing world class wines. The winery is small, and being family owned and operated, production is limited, with the focus on quality not quantity! The family prides themselves on producing consistently exceptional wines year in and year out, specializing in some of the finest Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot.
Alberto & Letizia Rafanelli, Italian immigrants, first founded A. Rafanelli Winery in the early 1900’s. They settled in the Healdsburg area with their family and started growing grapes and making wine.
After prohibition, Alberto and Letizia’s son Americo showed interest in the family business and was soon carrying on the tradition. He moved the winery to its current location in the Dry Creek Valley in the early 1950’s. It was here that he began to focus on the cultivation of premium Zinfandel grapes. Then, in the early 1970’s, Americo offered his first commercial release with the iconic A. Rafanelli Winery label.
Following in Americo’s footsteps, his son David had the passion for growing grapes and making wine. He earned his degree in Viticulture from UC Davis and began to seek out the best land to plant more varietals for the winery portfolio. David and his wife Patty continued with the family business and propelled it to a new level of excellence.
After graduating from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, David and Patty’s eldest daughter worked side-by-side with her father until becoming the head winemaker in 2000. With the help of her husband Craig Fehlman, who manages all of their vineyards, they hope to carry on the family tradition and continue improving the wines. Shelly’s sister, Stacy, is in charge of daily operations at the winery.