board of directors

Dario Sattui

Dario Sattui

Dario Sattui and Irina Yartseva

Dario Sattui’s great-grandfather Vittorio Sattui, an Italian immigrant, founded V. Sattui Winery in San Francisco in 1885. As Vittorio lived to be 94 years old, Dario got to know him and was fascinated by his stories and photos of the old winery, above which the Sattui family continued to live even after Prohibition had shut it down. As a child, Dario would play among the barrels and tanks in the underground cellars while dreaming of reviving the winery when he grew up.

He kept this dream alive as he furthered his education, receiving a degree in accounting and finance from San Jose State University and an M.B.A. from University of California, Berkeley. Following graduation, Dario traveled around Europe for two years in an old VW van. There he visited medieval castles, monasteries, farmhouses and wineries, taking photographs and completing detailed sketches and renderings.

In 1975 Dario opened V. Sattui Winery in St. Helena, fulfilling his dream to revive the family winery.  The winery had the feel of a small European village, with picnic grounds, a deli, and a direct to consumer sales model that was unprecedented at the time. The business was profitable from the first year, and today produces 50,000 cases of wine annually, all sold via the DTC model.

Armed with his vault of medieval architectural renderings and another passionate dream, Dario  purchased a 171-acre vineyard property in Calistoga in 1993 and began construction of Castello di Amorosa in 1994. The construction took 15 years and opened to the public in 2007. It has served as an iconic venue for Festival Napa Valley concerts ever since its opening.

Dario is a supporter of Napa Valley Hospice, Hands Across the Valley, the Napa Valley Land Trust,  and the Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Helena and Calistoga. In the past decade, V. Sattui Winery has protected over 550 acres in Napa Valley with conservation easements that preserve vineyards, oak woodlands and grassland open space forever.

Dario joined the Festival Napa Valley Board in 2013, and serves on the Audit Committee.