Bill Gadino

Bill Gadino, founder with his wife Aleta Saccuta Gadino of Gadino Cellars in Washington, delights visitors to the winery with his accordion, the instrument seen here a gift from his father when he was 10 years old. “I started playing when I was eight,” Bill recalls. By the time he was in high school in New Jersey, Bill, his brother and a few friends had formed a band, performing at “the Elk’s Club, the local fire hall for St. Patty’s Day, places like that.” 

For each of his U.S. Navy tours he would stow his accordion and entertain his fellow sailors for holidays like Christmas. It was in 1989 that Bill and Aleta planted their first grape vines in Rappahannock County. “Our grandfathers emigrated from Italy in the early 1900’s and brought with them the custom of making wine for family and neighbors.” To this day they keep their annual production at fewer than 2000 cases, allowing attention to a wine’s detail and quality. Bill, who will turn 76 in March, says the popular winery on School House Road “will be my final job. When I retire I’m going to retire from here. We have a blessed life.”


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