Food & Drink

January 16, 2014

Hilliard Bruce Wine Luncheon at The Dutch Miami Beach

Husband and wife team, John Hilliard and Christine Bruce are not only the namesake behind the wines at Hilliard Bruce but they are the talent as well.  The story of Hilliard Bruce [winery] is that of true Americana; do what you love, love what you do, and the success will follow. Everyone has a story and Hilliard Bruce is no different.

Hilliard Bruce Vineyards is characteristically boutique; intimate, classic, and refined. Hilliard Bruce Vineyards is a winemakers dream come true, with  impeccably-farmed rows, perfectly-trellised vines and precise watering mechanisms. The Hilliard Bruce Pinot Noir and Chardonnay vineyard is carefully farmed, maintained and respected as both John and Christine are master gardeners, trained through the American Horticultural Society. The detail and painstaking work put forth by John and Christine results in their works of art, four styles of Pinot Noir and one style of Chardonnay.

Hilliard Bruce Vineyards

Hilliard Bruce Vineyards

The couple purchased the 101-acre ranch in the Sta. Rita Hills in 2002. Christine, and John, had been looking to relocate from their native Texas to California. Christine a successful Arabian horse breeder needed a place she could raise her horses, and John, a wine lover, artist and businessman was determined to pursue his dream of cultivating a vineyard.  For both, their desire to relocate to California came from their love of  living, eating—and now, drinking—straight off the land.

Under the guidance of vineyard consultant Tom Prentice, John and Christine planted 21 acres of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay and set about tending to it with exceptional care. The vines are surrounded by 80 acres of native oaks, botanical gardens featuring exotic palm and date trees, espaliered apple trees, and beds upon beds of vegetables, tubers, lettuces and herbs. Over 500 roses, in every imaginable color and heady, sweet scent can be found throughout the ranch. Pillowfight roses, white-cabbage like heads overflowing with downy petals, line the private roads around the paddock and horse pastures on the property. It is from these surroundings that elegant, lush wines are produced.

All of the Hilliard Bruce wine is made on their SIP (sustainability in practice) certified estate vineyard. Hilliard Bruce wines are made in classic Burgundian style. The pairing menu at The Dutch was relatively rustic in choice further exemplifying the Burgundian-esque style of wine. There is no hint of the classic California fruit bomb coming out of the Hilliard Bruce wines. Earthy, minerally, and vegetative is what you’ll find on the palate of these wines with beautiful noses of cocoa, roses, and sweet earth.

  • Hilliard Bruce Wines Hilliard Bruce Wines
  • The Dutch Miami Beach The Dutch Miami Beach
  • Hilliard Bruce Wines Hilliard Bruce Wines
  • Hilliard Bruce Wines Hilliard Bruce Wines
  • Sheeps milk ricotta & grilled bread Sheeps milk ricotta & grilled bread
  • Lobster Roll Lobster Roll
  • Wild Mushroom Pizzette Wild Mushroom Pizzette
  • Mixed Greens Mixed Greens
  • Sheeps milk ricotta & pasta Sheeps milk ricotta & pasta
  • Roasted mushrooms Roasted mushrooms
  • Roasted chicken, wild rice, quinoa and arugula Roasted chicken, wild rice, quinoa and arugula
  • Hilliard Bruce Wines Hilliard Bruce Wines
  • New Orleans style beignets with jam New Orleans style beignets with jam

Hilliard Bruce Sky Pinot Noir,Sky Pinot Noir combines the intensity of fruit found in Sun Pinot Noir, with a higher acid profile due to earlier picks. Flavor profile, rich, full-bodied and intense. 420 cases were produced in 2011. $55

Hilliard Bruce Sun Pinot Noir,  Sun Pinot Noir is produced every year offering a bright, fruit-driven expression of the Hilliard Bruce vineyard. Flavor profile, dark spicy fruit with a silky mouth feel. A broad extended finish. 529 cases were produced in 2011. $55

Hilliard Bruce Earth Pinot Noir, Earth is produced from the earliest picked fruit from the estate, making it the winery’s most supple and terroir-driven Pinot Noir. Flavor profile, rich spices, dark fruit and minerals showing off elegant, soft tannins. 240 cases were produced in 2011. $45

Hilliard Bruce Chardonnay is made from grapes grown in blocks located in the coldest corner of the vineyard, often the last to see sun. The winemaking is overseen by Christine Bruce in a Burgundian-esque style that combines a lively acidity with a subtle balance of fruit, minerality and moderate oak. 475 cases were produced in 2011. $45

Hilliard Bruce wines can be purchased at hilliardbruce.com

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Photo credit: newspaper-publishers.regionaldirectory.us

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