Greystone is now the home of the Culinary Institute of America in Napa, but was originally built in the 1880s as a farmers’ cooperative. When that didn’t work, around 1890 the winery was put up for sale. Here’s an account of that sale from Winemaking in California Volume III written by Ernest Peninou and Sidney Greenleaf in 1954:
Regarding (Charles) Carpy’s acquisition of Greystone, the story is told that when his bid and that of his great business rival, Jacob Jacobi of the wine house of Lachman and Jacobi, were opened, it was found that both were identical. Carpy suggested settling the deadlock by flipping a coin; Jacobi rather reluctantly agreed and won.
They returned from St. Helena to San Francisco by the same train and when, upon their arrival at the Ferry Building, Carpy announced that he was the new owner of Greystone, two rumors became current: Carpy and “Old Jake” had engaged in a crap game and Carpy had won; Jacobi had been persuaded by the eloquence of the famous attorney, Delphine Delmas, a close friend of Carpy’s and one of the group on the train, to give up Greystone. Jacobi’s own explanation and the most plausible was that he had merely asked Carpy if he still wanted Greystone and learning that he did had said, “Take it.” After all, Lachman and Jacobi were primarily wine merchants, not vineyardists or wine producers.
I don’t think they do business that way in California anymore.