Halleck Vineyard is a family owned and operated boutique wine producer focused on “building community through wine”.
Ross and Jennifer moved to Sonoma with a goal to make world-class Pinot Noir. The focus of their efforts in the vineyard were building a brand that would allow them to put their children through college. Planting in 1993, the first harvest was in 1999.
Ross shepherds the spirit of the earth into every glass of Halleck Vineyard wine. He brings business acumen and sensitivity, fueled by passion. His brand and marketing agency founded in 1980, Halleck Inc., has been trusted by companies like Apple and HP, and wineries including Iron Horse Vineyards, Jordan Winery and St. Supery Vineyards.
Jennifer was instrumental in bringing Halleck Vineyard to life. While their first son, Connor, was an infant, Jennifer researched rootstocks at local nurseries. Stumbling upon a single line entry in the yellow pages, she met John Caldwell, who set the cornerstone for Halleck Vineyard’s success. He introduced Jennifer to the Dijon clones. During the 1992 Napa Valley Wine Auction, Ross and Jennifer tasted barrel samples of Pinot Noir from Saintsbury to discover the Dijon clones 667, 777, and 115. These were then purchased from John.
With the vineyard and three children underway, Jennifer delved into the wine world, which quickly became a passion. Working in the cellar at Tandem Winery with Greg Lafollette, she then moved into the tasting room at J Vineyards and Winery, followed by a job in sales representing Kosta Brown. All her experience, with her love of agriculture, confirmed that producing Halleck Vineyard wines was her calling.
Winemaking at Halleck Vineyard is led by Rick Davis. Rick’s desire to improve upon the processes and final product has proven very successful over 30 years. He specializes in cool climate varietals like Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and has worked with many of the top producers on the Sonoma Coast. During the 2001 and 2002 vintages, Rick worked with winemaker Greg Lafollette, supervising the production of the 2001 Tandem Halleck Vineyard Pinot Noir that won the “Pinot Noir Summit” in 2002. Rick has become intimately familiar with the Halleck Vineyard Estate terroir, and in 2005, came on as Winemaker. Rick provides oversight and direction for the Halleck Vineyard winemaking, consulting Jennifer and Ross on final blends.
Since 2001 Halleck Vineyard wines have been receiving praise from wine critics. In 2005, Halleck Vineyard was among the 10 wineries selected, of over 400 considered, for Greg Walter’s Pinot Passion Award. This coveted award recognizes those who devote their lives and livelihoods to growing, making and enjoying great Pinot Noir. A family artisan winery, Halleck Vineyard was judged #1 Pinot Noir in North America, earning “Best of Class” in the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition for 2019! This is the largest and oldest competition in North America.
Franki the Basenji is the vineyard dog and an important part of the Halleck family. When visiting the estate vineyard, guests are welcome to bring their dogs, too.
The winery logo represents an H for Halleck, but more importantly, it expresses “one-to-one”, depicted as Roman numerals. The Halleck family foster a personal connection with everyone who enjoys their wine physically, socially and culturally. They invite guests into their vineyard home and host them personally, travel to meet them, share meals, and invite customers and “Inner Circle” members on bonding trips around the world.
The dot represents a grape and the circle portrays community. Wine is viewed as sacred in almost all major religions, and for good reason. It has the unique ability to connect us, elevating a conversation and enhancing intimacy, building community. Their philanthropic efforts have been the underpinning to Halleck Vineyard. They support the causes dearest to the hearts of their wine club members by creating experiences for auction. In the past decade, they’ve raised over $750,000 for charities around the world.
Now divorced, Ross and Jennifer have redefined family, continuing to work harmoniously in the winery and in coaching their sons. Learn more about their personal and professional life balance on the Cellar Angels Winemakers Podcast.