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Constellation Brands Inc. has closed on the sale of the Widmer Winery in Naples, the Victor firm said Friday.
The winery was bought by L&D Acquisitions LLC, of which the principals are members of the Hazlitt family, who are grape and wine producers for Hazlitt 1852 Vineyards Inc. in Hector, Schuyler County.
Constellation will lease back the Widmer facility through the end of the year and provide custom grape crushing and winemaking services for L&D for the 2010 harvest. L&D will have full operational control of the winery by Jan. 1, Constellation said in a release.
L&D intends to use the Widmer facility to produce products for Hazlitt’s, among others, including core Hazlitt brands of Red Cat, White Cat, Cabin Fever and Bramble Berry. It expects to employ more than 21 people within the next 24 months.
L&D’s plan also includes renovation and upgrading of the winemaking facility and the redesign of the Widmer tasting room. There are also plans to offer custom crush, winemaking and warehousing services.
Constellation’s $7.1 million expansion of its Canandaigua Winery to accommodate the transfer of production of its brands produced at the Widmer Winery is planned for completion in November with products available for shipping Dec. 1.
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