The wine business is not for the faint of heart, but our two founding families had storied careers in wine long before joining forces and purchasing the Martin Family Winery in 2007. Phil Hurst, a UC Davis winemaking alumni, founded the Winery Exchange back in 1999. Paul Dolan has been growing wine grapes for over 40 years, and spent almost 30 years at Fetzer Vineyards, serving for many years as President. Both wanted to join forces, along with Phil’s wife Sylvia and Paul’s son Heath, to build a legacy for future generations.
The Dolan’s were passionate about continuing their family’s wine growing tradition that started in the early 19th century in northern Italy, and then moved to Sonoma County in 1881 when Paul’s great grandfather started Italian Swiss Colony. The Truett name originates from the name of the first vineyard planted by the Dolan family three generations ago to supply grapes to that historic brand. The Hurst’s had a vision for making dark, rich, and robust wines from the famed terroir of the Dry Creek Valley. From this combination of passion and vision, Truett Hurst was born.
This all-star partnership was further complimented when Dan Carroll, Co-Founder and Partner of Brooklands Capital Strategies and a consummate wine lover, joined. And then banking veteran Barrie Graham, a wine industry expert who was Truett Hurst’s first banker and still fills the position of advisor and coach, completed the team.
The partnership continues to focus on delivering the high quality wines, ecological leadership, and warm friendly atmosphere that were the founding principles of Truett Hurst. You can often find them, glass in hand, enjoying a warm summer day down by the creek or socializing with our Wine Club members at a pick-up-party or winery event.
And today, Truett Hurst is a vibrant 26 acre certified organic and Biodynamic vineyard and farm that is home to a small herd of goats and sheep, a restored creek and riparian ecosystem, seasonal steelhead and coho salmon, osprey, red tail hawks, golden eagles, blue herons, white cranes, ducks, and even an occasional otter. The estate’s vineyards are planted with two old vine zinfandel cuttings: St. Peter’s Church and DuPratt, two types of Petite Sirah, and, in the spirit of our Italian predecessors, a Primitivo clone. We are very proud of our friendly and hard-working team, who welcome our Club members and all of our guests as we do our own family. Our goal is to create wines that reflect the character of the vineyards that we farm and the people who make them- a true taste of place. And what an incredibly special place it is.