WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A familiar face of Sacramento is moving his winery closer to home.
Baker Family Wines is planning to move its operation to West Sacramento before the fall of 2019 with the hopes of increasing their success in the wine industry.
Owner Dusty Baker started Baker Family Wines in 2014 in a cooperative with Treasure Island Wines, following his career in baseball as a player and a manager. Winemaker Charles "Chik" Brenneman said that now they are gearing up to move to a West Sacramento location, bringing them closer home.
Baker, his winemaker and his family drive 90 minutes to get to the winery everyday. He said he'll consider his business successful when the quality is good and he thinks the quality can be better now that he doesn't have to spend so much time commuting.
"It was killing me and my winemaker to drive all the time to Treasure Island," Baker said. "I think I am successful when I am loving what I am doing and people are liking what I am making."
Money is also important, Baker sad, but noted that if they have good quality and care about their product, that the money will follow. Baker sees West Sacramento as an affordable place to move the business. Plus, he and Brenneman are excited to be neighbors to Bike Dog Brewing Company.
"This way people who are at Bike Dog and want a glass of wine, they can just come on over," Brenneman said.
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As they are in the home stretch of opening, Brenneman said that, depending on a few factors, they hope to open before the end of August. Baker said this move is coming as the Sacramento area is beginning to gain recognition for good quality wines, something he wants to be a part of and known for.
With the new location, there will be a new wine membership, new jobs and new opportunities for viniculture students, Brenneman said. He previously taught Vinaclulture at UC Davis and wants to keep teaching, despite no longer being part of UC Davis. Brenneman hopes that their winery can serve as a first job for some of the students so they can continue to further their education and gain valuable experience.
Brenneman went on to say that when they open their location they will be able to have an exclusive membership, which wasn't available at their Treasure Island location.
Baker said even with the changes, the winery will still be a family operation. His father taught him how to grow and the winery is his way of continuing that tradition and honoring him.
"I am a farmer. Chik is the winemaker. My daughter and her husband do so much," Baker said. "We are a family."