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Murdoch's Plan For L.A. Vineyard On Hold, Awaiting License

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Photo by Krista Simmons/LAist
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Rupert Murdoch is likely feeling the same frustration that many bar owners and brewers do here in L.A. The media mogul is currently awaiting the pending approval of a winemakers license from the ABC for the 16-acre Moraga Vineyards in the hills above Bel-Air, which he is hoping to purchase.

The listing price of the property and winery was $29.5 million, but the sale won't go through until he gets his license.

Says the L.A. Times:

California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control documents indicate that Murdoch applied for a Type 02 California Winegrowers license March 25 -- about six weeks before the 82-year-old tycoon gleefully announced on Twitter his plans to buy the vineyard. The license approval process typically takes 45 to 90 days, ABC spokesman John Carr said. Murdoch needs a winegrower's license to be able to manufacture, mix, flavor, color, label, sell or transport the wine. "A winegrower's license also authorizes the person ... to conduct wine tastings ... either on or off the winegrower's premises," according to ABC rules.

The property, which was the first commercial winery to be bonded in LA after the end of Prohibition, is been operated as a horse ranch in the past, but is currently owned by Tom Jones, former chief executive of Northrop Corp.
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