ST. HELENA, CA – What started as a festive New Years Eve fundraising event for presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg has turned tragic as reports are emerging that a wine cave collapse in Napa County has trapped more than 40 bundlers inside.
“We received a call at around 6pm local time that there was a collapse at the Del Dotto Estate Wine Cave and immediately launched search and rescue operations,” said St. Helena fire chief John Sorensen.
“The bundlers would have likely just finished their amuse-bouche of Caraquet oysters with Champagne mignonette paired with Gloria Ferrar Va de Vi sparkling wine when they would have heard a terrible rumbling,” said a spokesman for Napa County Search and Rescue. “From there, they would have had to seek shelter under the custom designed 40-foot solid redwood dining table quickly as the cave collapsed around them if there was any chance of survival. Our only hope is that they have enough battuto Bolognese with housemade pappardelle and deconstructed Caesar crostini and Cinghiale pinot noir to sustain them until we can bore a rescue tunnel into the cave.”
Del Dotto Estate event coordinator Sheila Welch-Davidoff expressed concern for the bundlers, explaining “We pride ourselves on creating world-class experiences for our guests, and I’m deeply saddened to hear this horrific news. It’s highly doubtful that the attendees will have a chance to savor the chianti-braised lamb shank on parmesan risotto that our two-time Michelin-star awarded in-house chef expertly prepared for this occasion.”
As rescue operations continued into the evening, some had fears that time might be running out for the bundlers, many of whom are high level Silicon Valley executives and pharmaceutical company board members.
“Our greatest concern is that the collapse ruptured the hundreds of wine barrels inside the cave, releasing a torrent of thousands of gallons of Villa Del Lago Cabernet Sauvignon, drowning the bundlers,” explained Sorensen. “If they did manage to survive, it’s just a matter of time before the victims succumb to oxidation.”
Buttigieg, who was en route to the fundraiser from another campaign event in Sonoma County, issued a brief statement, saying “Our thoughts and prayers are with the bundlers and their portfolio managers. I have every confidence that search and rescue teams will extract the donors before the FEC filing deadline at midnight.”