George's journey as a vintner began when his wife, Loretta bought him a boxed wine making kit. He completed the kit and produced some pretty good tasting wine! This piqued his interest, and soon he researched growing grapes to produce wine at home using various techniques. The next step was an arbor in his backyard in Southern California. Like only George would do, he entered his first harvest in the Orange County Fair and won an impressive award.
Fast forward 5 years, George and Loretta purchase 10 acres in Sonoma, minutes from downtown. To the basic eye, the property was composed of overgrown grass, beautiful oak trees, a small pond, run down barn and a small house in need of major repairs. However, George and Loretta imagined a vineyard, a nature preserve, a retirement home, a family retreat, and a gathering spot for generations to come...
For the past10 years, George has envisioned, researched, planned, (researched and planned some more) while he and Loretta transformed those10 acres into an ongoing project that fulfills their dreams and passions.
Written by Loretta Gajdos
During the first few weeks in escrow, George had numerous experts meet us to inspect the soil content, the wells and the pond with the possibility in mind of building a vineyard. After that, we were all in. Knowing it was ours and that we had a serious plan in place, the next thing to decide is what to name this magnificent property? Once again, George with his love of tradition and even greater love for my mom, asked me to name this place after her, Napoli Vineyards. I remember phoning my two sisters and asking them if that was okay with them. I think we all loved the idea.
My mom, here forever, in loving memory.
Loretta and George have been married for 45 years and are no stranger to working side-by-side through many facets of life. They were set up on a blind date by Loretta's sister and brother-in-law and raised two daughters together. Loretta was employed in the billing department at the same law firm where George began his career as an attorney. For 24 years they worked together, both taking on more and more responsibility as the years passed. In 2020, Loretta retired as Office Manager and Billing Administrator from Bagby, Gajdos & Zachary, LLP.
Loretta has successfully managed a small business, created a beautiful home, raised two children who now have families of their own, and spends endless hours/days being the best Mimi a grandchild (or 5) could ever ask for.