The Hilt Estate | Santa Rita Hills

The Hilt Estate in Santa Rita Hills, California

The Hilt Estate produce exceptional cool climate Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines from their rugged maritime influenced estate vineyards located in the southwest corner of the Sta. Rita Hills AVA. Founded in 2008, it is now owned by billionaire Stan Kroenke whose properties include Screaming Eagle and Bonneau du Martray and of course Arsenal FC.

Rancho Salsipuedes, where The Hilt wines make their home, provides vineyards planted on land nearly 13 unobstructed miles from the ocean on the west. This unique, large and sprawling property offers a range of altitudes, aspects, soil types, and microclimates, giving winemaker Matt Dees a patchwork of vineyard parcels from which to select grapes and create wines with distinctive styles.

Diverse though it may be, Salsipuedes possesses some aspects that remain consistent: the land has poor soils that force vines to dig deep; there are powerful, whipping winds and a cold maritime climate that allow grapes on the property to ripen slowly and retain acidity despite the warm daytime sun; and the vines on the property are low in vigour, allowing them to produce low yields of concentrated, complex grapes. It is with these three important components – poor soils, whipping winds and a cool maritime climate along with low vigour vines – that Salsipuedes defines itself in the Sta. Rita Hills.