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Santa Maria winery scrambles to maintain sales during renewed stay-at-home orders


SANTA MARIA, Calif. - Since the new stay at home order took effect, Rancho Sisquoc along with all wineries in Southern California have not been permitted to serve guests.

Steve Fennell with the winery says sales and Wine Club signups are taking a hit.

"The Wine Club is a huge part of a small winery's operation, and not having tastings we certainly have seen a reduction in new club sign-ups," says Fennell.

Managers with the family-owned winery are now relying on pickup, delivery and online sales to maintain their business.

"It’s been a frustrating year for sure, the ups and downs, the opens the closes, you know, and all the regulations have been really hard," says Tasting Room Manager Becki Rodriguez at Rancho Sisquoc.

Until the stay at home order is lifted, managers with the winery are hopeful that the new year will bring a return to safe outdoor service.

"I think there’s going to be such a demand for enjoying not just great wine and a great location, but also enjoying peoples company," says Fennell.

Fennell says it’s not just humans that are missing outdoor services, but also the animals that live here like Ophelia the cat.

"Well they’ve been missing the people. They really enjoy rubbing around the guests and kind of saying hello. I don’t think they understand what’s going on, but they definitely noticed the difference," says Fennell.

Fennell hopes to get through the pandemic as soon as possible.

"Through a lot of local support, we're hopeful our business and other local businesses will get through this together," says Fennell.

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Patricia Martellotti

Patricia Martellotti is a reporter for News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Patricia, click here.


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