Meet The Winemakers
Making world class wine has been our goal from the start. From our vineyards to fermentation, to barrel, to bottle its a process that we are a part of and enjoy every day. Sharing vegetables from our garden, gourmet food from our kitchen, and our wine, it's our tradition by design and a wonderful way for us to celebrate our bounty of harvest and winemaking.
Dan Martin winemaker
Talking with Dan Martin, winemaker and co-proprietor of Martin Ranch Winery, is like sitting around a campfire with an engaging and affable, yet venerable sage of winemaking. There's a meaning, a message and a deep-rooted significance to the fascinating and compelling stories Dan has to tell.
Dan's enthusiasm for what he does, both in the vineyard and the winery, is irrepressible. Perhaps this comes from years of farming and living sustainably with, and from the land. Or, maybe it rubbed-off on him while working along side his Uncle Jack, namesake for Dan's own J.D. Hurley brand wine label. Dan had plenty of quality time for that to occur, since his Uncle Jack reached the enviable age of 107 years, with a lifetime in agriculture bridging two centuries.
Dan is a "super taster"—he has far more taste buds than an average person, which allows him to quickly put together flavor profiles for his new blends.
"I've maintained the same consistent style of making J.D. Hurley wines since we introduced the brand label more than ten years ago. Our clientele tends to prefer a bit more oak than I do as a rule, so I probably push the wood a bit further than I would for my own palate, as I'm more sensitive to oak than some folks. But those that have tasted my wines appreciate the balance, and that's the way the wine has remained."
When not tending to the vineyards or winemaking, you're likely to find Dan Martin in the barrel room offering barrel samples and winemaking techniques with friends, family and Wine Club members at the Martin Ranch Winery. Getting Dan's experiences and insight firsthand, while tasting his wines and experiencing the beautiful surroundings of the Martin Ranch Winery, are ideal ways for any wine enthusiast to spend an afternoon.
Thérèse Martin winemaker
Thérèse Martin, winemaker and co-proprietor of Martin Ranch Winery, is one of the few female winemakers in the Santa Cruz Mountains with a certification in winemaking from the Viticulture and Enology program at University of California, Davis. So it's no surprise she would find herself making world class award-winning wines.
Thérèse has a special sensitivity to smell that gives her the ability to discover characteristics in the wine that help her to create rich perfection in her Thérèse Vineyards brand label. But even more important, she is able to design the bouquet of the wine, setting the sensory stage before the wine makes it to the mouth.
Traditional winemaking techniques are one of the reasons her wines are taking Gold and Double Gold, Best of Show, Best of Class and Best of Appellation Medals in prestigious wine competitions such as the San Francisco Chronicle International Wine Competition, the California State Fair Wine Competition and the San Francisco International Wine Competition.
In addition to winemaking, Thérèse is also known for her epic culinary farm to table gourmet dinners. She manages the expansive Winery vegetable and flower garden, harvesting the fresh veggies for all her meals. Daily, the MRW team gathers around the lunch table, enjoying her hand crafted meals while talking about the days events.
Upon visting the Winery, you will find Thérèse Martin greeting visitors and Wine Club members along with managing all facets of the Winery business. Her commitment to the Martin Ranch Winery's mission of Tradition, Passion, Excellence in the art of winemaking, reflects in her Thérèse Vineyards label. Thérèse has created a wonderful lifestyle at the Martin Ranch Winery that can be felt in everything she touches.