Dysfunctional Family Winery grand debut…

September 9, 2018

Written by Ken Wornick

Backed by 20+ vintages and many dozens of wines produced, Ken is a Sonoma-based wine consultant and founder of Sonocaia Estate Vineyeards, Dysfunctional Family Winery and Hydeout Sonoma.

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On a gorgeous Sonoma evening, Dysfunctional Family Winery made its official and exceptionally grand public debut. The town mayor sang the star bangled banner (no, she did not). The Wine Spectator immediately awarded 100-points and declared it the ‘wine of the century’ (never gonna happen). And the Blue Angels did a super-sonic fly over (somewhere, but not here). Assisted by our rare and precious vineyard dog, Mr. Ploofy, (actually, we don’t have a dog) and our spectacularly gorgeous family (too ‘busy’ to attend), we proudly introduced our multi-generational (um, no) and outrageously expensive cult wine (hardly) to an adoring crowd (well, yeah, maybe).

Dysfucntional 2016 bottle

The occasion was the outdoor nighttime screening at Hydeout Sonoma of Martin Scorsese’s “The Last Waltz” (The Band, 1976).

SIFF Hydeout 1

The venue was donated by me, Ken Wornick, (I am the winemaker) and the co-owner of the Hydeout, along with my immediate supervisor (otherwise known as my wife, Cynthia, who is on the board of the film festival). You can learn just how very fascinated we our with ourselves here:


The event was presented by the Sonoma International Film Festival to a large crowd that spilled out over the lawn with chairs, blankets, and jackets. Everyone sang along (for real) with Bob Dylan, Robbie Robertson, Levon Helm, Neil Young, Emmylou Harris, Eric Clapton, and many others.

SIFF Hydeout 7

And everyone enjoyed many superb and well known wines from around Sonoma, each of whom generously support the film festival.

SIFF Hydeout 4

Executive Director of the film festival, Kevin McNeely, welcomed everyone, thanked the volunteers and hosts, chatted up the debut of the Dysfunctional Family Winery 2016 Red Blend, and introduced the film screening.

SIFF Hydeout 8

By the end of the evening, the night’s supply of Dysfunctional Family Winery 2016 Red Blend was exhausted.

Dys 1

During the evening, wine and movie lovers enjoyed food from the well-known Sonoma food truck institution, El Coyote.

SIFF Hydeout 3

During a brief pause in the film, everyone dug into their tacos and burritos, and when the movie re-started, hoots and hollers were heard echoing across the lawn.

SIFF Hydeout 5

Another good time at the Hydeout. And a welcome start for the Dysfunctional Family Winery.


About the wine: Dysfunctional Family Winery’s 2016 “Red Blend” – Made of equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon (from Sonoma Mountain), Sangiovese (from Moon Mountain), Zinfandel (from Bennett Valley), and Merlot (from Carneros), the grapes were de-stemmed (but not crushed) and the whole berries were frozen-Nitrogen cold-soaked for three days, then fermentation was allowed to proceeded rapidly for 2 weeks, then the wine was pressed off fairly hard, and barreled up in a 50/50 mix of once-used French and American oak for 20 months; the wine is dark and inky, with a plush texture and evident fruit, but with soft tannins, and is meant to drink now. $25/bottle.

About the label: The photograph is an original shot circa 2006 by Dennis Wornick using a Kodak “FunSaver” instamatic camera, in the Tenderloin neighborhood of SF, and obtained this image of an actor walking outside from his theatre practice and captured standing in front of  the ‘dysfunctional family’ window display.

Dysfucntional 2016 label






Please read closely: Dysfunctional Family wines are only available to the public at an off-site tasting room location (per Federal, State, Local, Deep State, State Department, and Bureau of Intensive Governent Meddling in Citizens Private Affairs laws, regulations, and don’t jump into the bathtub with an electrified toaster consumer protection statutes). We hope someday that this wine will be available for sale at the Hydeout (pending a permit currently under consideration at the Sonoma County Permit and Resource Management Department).

If you are interested in becoming a customer, please email us directly at kwornick@sprynet.com

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  1. Michael

    Seriously funny. Great event. Terrific hosts too.

  2. Simon

    Very funny. Nice work. I am also dysfunctional. Does this constitute an infringement of our patents. Keep me on the list, can’t wait.

    • Ken Wornick

      All are welcome into the Dysfunctional Family. Thanks for the support.

  3. Dawn

    Wow! Looks like a tremendous evening with amazing wine (yes, truly amazing)

  4. Lori

    Oooo … now I’m even more bummed I couldn’t get home in time for the event. Lucky us to have such hip neighbors. (BTW: the fact that I used the word “hip” makes me totally NOT hip … so make the “woke neighbors”) XOXO

  5. Assaf

    Sounds like a fun night!

  6. Linda Lev

    Love your writing, I want to give you a hug, great way to start my morning!

    • Ken Wornick

      I accept the electronic hug, and send one right back at you!

  7. Ben Ryan

    Congrats Ken! Can’t wait to try some of that wine!

    • Ken Wornick

      Ben, ti will be here waiting for you!

  8. Jenny Flannery Keleher

    So funny! The event sounded great. Runners can be dysfunctional too (in a good way) so we look forward to trying some of your wine, post run!

  9. Ken Constantino

    Congratulations, Ken and Cynthia…
    Deb and I can’t wait to be a part of your dysfunctional wine family.
    The blend sounds very interesting-can’t wait to give it swirl and taste!
    Take good care.

  10. mike kirby

    Hi Ken. Looks like a good time. Wish we were there.

  11. Bill & Connie Schlelein

    Great night, great hosts, great venue, great movie, great wine, great fun.

  12. Dave Bourne

    Congratulations Amigo! We have to get down to see you.

  13. Theodore Spores

    Nicely done Ken, looks like another great time at the Hydeout. Love to you and Cynthia.

  14. Maryann long

    Is there a chance to purchase a couple bottles of the dysfunctional family wine? I am 75 and would love to give as gifts. Thank you

    • Ken Wornick

      Hi Maryann, thank you so much for the inquiry, I am afraid the Dysfunctional Family wines are not yet for sale. We are in the process of obtaining the permits and regulatory docs to sell and ship out of state. We would love to have you as a customer soon. Please feel free to send me a private email and I can communicate with you directly. Thank you. kwornick@sprynet.com


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