Maverick Wine Company is Proud to Present…
Matt Dees’ : The winemaker at Jonata, The Hilt and The Paring.
He joined legendary French wine consultant Michel Rolland at Jonata in 2004, and they quickly began producing highly regarded wines. While some winemakers might have been intimidated by such a famous figure, Dees saw an opportunity to learn from the best.
More recently, Dees and team acquired the farming rights to 30 acres of older-vine pinot noir and chardonnay. The resulting wines are labeled as The Hilt “Vanguard” and “Old Guard.”
“The Old Guard bottlings display a more earth-driven style for the pinot noir and a focus on acidity and minerality without the touch of new oak for the chardonnay,” says Dees.
“The Vanguard pinot noir is based on a clone that is defined by dark fruit and can stand up to more new oak, while the chardonnay balances ripe fruit, a hint of malolactic richness, electric acidity and subtle French oak notes.”
The third label, The Paring, is made from the vineyard blocks that are either too young or don’t fit into the vintage style of the highly acclaimed Jonata and Hilt wines—The Paring is essentially a "chip off the old block"
Jonata is 600 acres of gorgeous, golden hills; eighty of which were meticulously selected based on their unique microclimates and soil profiles. Then divided into more than fifty blocks and sub-blocks - each matched with different rootstocks. Clones and planting densities - to provide winemaker Matt Dees with the broadest palette from which to blend the distinctive wines of Jonata.
Jonata El Alma
Jonata El Desafio
Jonata Flor Jonata Le Sangre
The Hilt champions pinot noir and chardonnay from the climate margins of California’s coastal winegrowing regions—Santa Barbara County’s Sta. Rita Hills and Santa Maria Valley AVA’s prominent among them. Two schools of winemaking form The Hilt’s view of chardonnay and pinot noir: Old Guard and Vanguard. Made by Matt Dees of Jonata, this wine is made at the Jonata property. The philosophy of "growing in the margins" propels winegrowers to employ practices that enable grapes to show full transparency of site—key to The Hilt's philosophy. Within this framework, The Hilt ferments two different camps of wine—Old Guard and Vanguard . The former relies on older vine selection and cellar methods that offer a nod to the Old World, with acid and structure at the fore. The latter expression is a testimony to the full textural elements so common in New World sites. As hinted at in the name, The Hilt goes "all the way" in its quest for expression and quality; nothing is held back in terms of effort.
The Hilt Old Guard Chardonnay
The Hilt Vanguard Pinot Noir
The Paring has an extraordinary pedigree.
Sourced primarily from a region on the vanguard—Ballard Canyon in the Santa Ynez region.
The Paring bottlings explore different blending opportunities—from the rule-bending Paring White to the wide-ranging Cabernet net of winemaker Matt Dees.
The Paring makes its own rules.
Vineyard experimentation is key; select vineyard sites are explored, and farmed to our rigorous standards. If and when they show us what we’re looking for, we bottle them.
The Paring bottlings explore different styles and vineyards—from the dual stylistic expressions of Santa Maria Valley Chardonnay to the meticulously farmed Pinot Noir from a selection of distinctive Santa Barbara sites.
The Paring Red Wine
The Paring White Wine
The Paring Pinot Noir
The Paring Chardonnay
Below is a video interview from the Santa Barbara Independent Wine Talk with Matt Dees - Monday, January 6, 2014