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  • The original car from the 1988 film, "Tucker: The Man and His Dream," can be seen in the winery shop at the Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Geyserville, California. (Mike Siegel/The Seattle Times/MCT)

  • Guests can swim in two large pools that are connected at the Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Geyserville, California. (Mike Siegel/The Seattle Times/MCT)

  • The Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Geyserville, California, has other attractions than just the winery. (Mike Siegel/The Seattle Times/MCT)

  • Bill Dick, tasting associate, speaks with visitors in one of the tasting rooms at the Francis Ford Coppola Winery in Geyserville, California, in North Sonoma County. (Mike Siegel/The Seattle Times/MCT)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Coppola’s winery is a grape place for a day trip

GEYSERVILLE, Calif. – A visit to the Francis Ford Coppola Winery is more than just a wine-tasting amid poetic rolling hills of vineyards.

It’s a day destination, complete with an array of activities unrelated to wine: swimming pools, bocce ball courts, 28 pool “cabines” – and a chance to explore some of the most famous movie paraphernalia in cinema history.

Director Coppola’s five golden Oscars are among the displays in the winery’s Movie Gallery exhibits, including his first, for the 1972 film “The Godfather.” Also on display is the 1948 Tucker Sedan – only 51 of the then-revolutionary cars were manufactured – used in Coppola’s 1988 film, “Tucker: The Man and His Dream. “

There’s more to the winery than wine and movie memorabilia. It’s designed to be a place where adults and children can relax for a day.

An outdoor stage, the Pavilion, hosts live music and other entertainment. It’s adorned with a large mural that was part of the set of “Godfather II.”

Nearby are two swimming pools (reopening in the spring) that are joined by a “swim-through” with spraying arches of water. Covering 3,600 square feet, the pools give room for family play.

Twenty-eight poolside “cabines” – European-style private changing rooms with showers – are available for day-use rental.

For those who want to focus on the wines, daily tours show off the property and bottling facility and wind up in a tasting room. More than 40 wines are produced on-site, including a sparkling wine named after Coppola’s daughter, filmmaker Sofia Coppola.

Hungry? Pair the wines with Italian and international cuisine at Rustic, the winery’s restaurant, whose menu is designed around some of Coppola’s favorite meals from around the world.

Coppola frequents the winery and is sometimes found eating at its restaurant.