Taking the emotional side out of the equation is tough. Being in the startup business in California/Silicon Valley, I can say that I have seen this occur all too many times, some are nice, and some are ugly as sin. I guess a few things come to mind:
1) Usually, in the startup business, the founder gets stock and at least will something for his/her work/effort. But in the wine business - this sounds less likely and that is truly sad
2) Passion and all is fine, but when the thing you built is ripped from your hands, it gets personal (http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.c ... B0E641.DTL
) - by the way the suit was won by the founders.
I guess - business is business and if you place your name on a contract or allow a new name on that contract, the game changes.