Dario Sattui in front of castle door

Dario Sattui, Owner

Dario Sattui in front of castle door

Dario Sattui

Dario Sattui, owner of Castello di Amorosa in Calistoga, California, and great-grandson of San Francisco, California pioneer vintner, Vittorio Sattui, was born in San Francisco in 1941 and raised in San Francisco and Fairfax in Marin County. He attended Drake High School and then the College of Marin.

As a child, Sattui was an entrepreneur and loved playing sports. He started various businesses in grammar school, high school and college and gained valuable experience in the basics of business.

His great grandfather Vittorio Sattui, an Italian immigrant, founded V. Sattui Winery in 1885 in San Francisco. 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 Vittorio Sattui family continued to live even after Prohibition closed the old V. Sattui Winery. As a child, Dario would play among the barrels and tanks in the underground cellars while dreaming of reviving V. Sattui Winery when he grew up.

He kept this dream alive as he furthered his education receiving a B.S. in Accounting and Finance from San Jose State University in 1965 and then an M.B.A. with an emphasis in Marketing from University of California, Berkeley in 1969.

Following graduation, Sattui traveled around Europe for two years in an old VW van. It was during this period his fascination for medieval architecture began to take shape. Living out of his van, Sattui would visit medieval castles, monasteries, palaces farmhouses and wineries studying their designs, taking photographs and completing detailed sketches and renderings.

In 1972, Sattui returned to the U.S. with the intent of re-establishing his great grandfather’s original V. Sattui winery which had been dormant for more than 50 years. With $8,000 and a novel approach to the wine business he re-opened V. Sattui winery in St. Helena and turned a profit in the first year of operation.

Armed with his vault of medieval architectural renderings and another passionate dream, Sattui purchased a 171-acre vineyard property in Calistoga in 1993 and began construction of Castello di Amorosa Winery in 1994. Clearly, the success of V.Sattui winery built the 121,000 square foot, 12th-century style, authentic Tuscan castle winery. Read Castello di Amorosa’s History & Owner to dive deeper into Dario Sattui’s vision.

His hobbies include travel, sports, nature, eating and drinking well, business ideas, and restoring medieval buildings.

Learn more about Dario’s inspiration for building Castello di Amorosa.


Michael Horn’s “What’s Cookin’ on Wine” with Nicole Nielson, December, 2022 (Interview Starts at 38:00)
How I Turned $8,000 Into a Wine Empire, June, 2021 (Interview)
Sattui Donates $1 Million to Calistoga Schools, July 2, 2020


A History of The Project – Part 1, by Dario Sattui
A History of The Project – Part 2, by Dario Sattui
A History of The Project – Part 3, by Dario Sattui