Winery Couple Uses Crowdfunding To Start A Tasting Room

Husband and Wife Winemaking Couple are Hoping Kickstarter can Help Them Build the First Downtown Tasting Room in Petaluma, CA: Gateway to Sonoma Wine Country.

Petaluma, CA – It’s time for the Barber Cellars winery to take its last and most important step, and Michael and Lorraine Barber need your help to do it!  Since 2007 this husband and wife winemaking team have been making award-winning wine from Sonoma County vineyards.  Dedicated to organic viticulture and minimalist winemaking, their wines have been featured several times in national magazines and the SF Chronicle.  But the last piece of their winery puzzle has eluded them: the tasting room.  To change this they’ve started a kickstarter crowdfunding project to fund the creation of a new downtown tasting room in Petaluma, CA.  

California wineries are increasingly dependent on tasting room sales, which make up a little over 50% of winery revenue on average.  This figure is staggering and makes a tasting room a vital part of succeeding in the California wine market.  Like many wineries, the Barbers make their wine in a permitted warehouse space that is perfect for wine production but not very romantic.  Offsite tasting rooms have become a popular way for wineries like Barber Cellars to open nice, well appointed spaces for consumers to enjoy wines they otherwise could not have access to.  Numerous winery lounges are everywhere in tasting hub cities like Healdsburg and Sonoma, but the Barbers want to start an offsite downtown tasting room in their hometown of Petaluma.  This little city is the gateway to Sonoma wine country, with a growing population, plenty of foot traffic, and a beautiful downtown that’s part of the historic national registry.  This would be Petaluma’s first tasting room, and a project like this takes renovation, leases, permits, and investment!

“In the wine business,” says Michael Barber, “You start with a large fortune to make a small fortune.  We started with no fortune.”  The Barbers started their winery with savings and struggle and have been rewarded by creating a successful brand and a loyal following. Now they are looking to crowdfunding to help them get the tasting room going.  “We think kickstarter is the perfect way to fund this project,” says Lorraine.  “We’ve donated to several projects, and think it’s a great way to get people excited and involved – to make them a part of the tasting room.”  In fact, one of the rewards for donating is a permanent/personal name plaque in the tasting room.  They want to create a sit down style space where people can relax and enjoy their locally made wines with friends and family.  All the great cheese makers around the Petaluma area will also be highlighted and tasted right alongside the Barber’s wines. 

They are using their wine country clout to create unique Sonoma adventures for kickstarter donors.  Rewards for helping them build their family’s wine and cheese tasting room range from the personalized name plaque, to picnic and library wine tastings in the vineyard, to a personalized helicopter/airplane tasting tour over Sonoma wine country.  Visit their kickstarter page at, and visit their website at  You only have until April 25th to donate and claim one of these incredible rewards!

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Media Contact
Company Name: Build the Barber Cellars Tasting Room
Contact Person: Michael Barber, Owner/Winemaker
Phone: 415-699-6695
Country: United States