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"The wine industry is changing and in this environment, at our ages, 61 and 55, we don't want to be doing this in 10 years. It's a 24/7 job," she said.

The winery and two homes on the property are listed for $6.9 million.

Jim Rowe Sr. has been trying to sell his Dry Creek winery Pezzi King since last summer with no takers. The 6,500-case zinfandel specialist is on the market for nearly $10 million.

Pressure on prices means the winery has had to manage its operations closely, but it hasn't dampened interest in the winery, he said. At least 16 potential buyers have expressed interest, including investment groups from the Far East and Europe, he said.

"There's no question the industry is getting kicked around," Rowe said. "But we're doing alright."

There is something of a standoff in the market at the moment, according to Correia.

The handful of buyers are largely expecting to find great deals, but winery owners are reluctant to sell at such steep discounts, Correia said.

"Sellers think it's 2007, and buyers think it's the 1930s," Correia said.

Those who don't have to sell are waiting it out. But those expecting a quick rebound in demand or values are likely to be disappointed, Correia said. He expects to see more winery sales in 2010 as the pressure builds.

"A lot of property owners really haven't faced up to reality. They are still in denial," Correia said. "They think they are going to work their way out of these things, but some of them have dug themselves a pretty deep hole."

Plenty of wineries, however, are working hard to stay out of that hole in the first place.

By avoiding big investments in wineries and vineyards, owners of wine brands are getting creative to find ways to respond to the market.

Olson, of the 1,200-case Olson Ogden wine brand, said the market was telling him that demand for his $33 to $52 single-vineyard wines would be limited for the foreseeable future. So he and his partner have capped production of those wines and focused on more affordable blends.

Two years ago he launched a $28 syrah that was a blend of Napa and Sonoma county fruit. He's now following that up with a $19 syrah blend from Mendocino County called Persuasion.

"We kept hearing, &‘Give us something under 20 bucks (at) retail,'" Olson said. "The only way we see to grow volume in the current market is to give the market what it's asking for."

Nancy Walker, winemaker at Vintage Wine Estates, co-founded her own Stephen & Walker Winery label in 2004, releasing her first wines just before the recession hit in 2007.

The wines have been well received and sales are growing, but it's been a slog. The wines start at $28 and rise to $350 for limited edition large-size bottles. Tasting room sales have been slow, with people buying a bottle or two instead of a case or two, which has hurt the brand's cash flow, she said.

"I just did the payroll and there wasn't enough money in the checking account to pay the tasting room staff this weekend," Walker said.

To save money, she and her husband, Tony Stephen, can often be found behind the bar at their tasting room nights and weekends. While managing her own brand is running her a bit ragged, Walker said she wouldn't have it any other way.

PDF: Lawsuit against Oakmont Senior Living and Oakmont Management

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