About Hallcrest Vineyards

Appropriately named by the Hall family back in the 1880s, Hallcrest is at the crest of a small hill above the old town of Felton nestled in the Santa Cruz Mountains. It was a retreat for the Hall family until 1941 when Chaffee Hall, a prominent business attorney from San Francisco acted on his obsession with wine and planted the first vineyard. At the time, it was one of only three wineries in the Santa Cruz Mountains and the only one producing varietal wines from estate vineyards.

Founded in the 1880's by the

Hall Family.

1941 Chaffee Hall planted the first vineyard on the site.

First vintage 1946.

Benchmark for Cabenet Sauvignon and White Riesling.

Category : Cult Wines.

Hallcrest wasted no time proving to the world that wines from the Santa Cruz Mountains were of world class caliber and under Chaffee's direction, Hallcrest became one of the outstanding wineries in California and a benchmark for Cabernet Sauvignon and White Riesling. The acclaim of the wines combined with Hall's reputation as a winemaking pioneer in the Santa Cruz Mountains elevated Hallcrest wines to a category we would now call, "cult wine."

In 1987, John Schumacher and his family bought the Hallcrest site, which had been operating as Felton Empire since Chaffee Hall's retirement. John and his family restored the name "Hallcrest Vineyards" and the guiding principle that Chaffee had originally established, namely making uncompromised quality wines from the Santa Cruz Mountains. Today, Hallcrest is still family owned and operated by the Schumachers and the focus is still on handcrafting small lots of premium wines that bear the Santa Cruz Mountain Appellation in name and character. Chaffee's label collection, a history itself still lines the walls of the winery's conference room.

1987 bought by John Schumacher.

Family owned and operated.

Restored Chaffee Halls quality principles.

From the Press


Bill Daley, SF Gate Chronicle Staff Writer

“With its Organic Wine Works, Hallcrest Vineyards has entered one of the hottest new fields in winemaking today. Yet the winery's small scale and homey, old-fashioned style take you back to how winemaking used to be.”


Josie Cowden, Good Times

"Schumacher showed us warm hospitality—giving a talk on his winemaking methods around huge containers of fermenting grapes. Not wasting a minute, he was punching them down at the same time."

© 2019 by Hallcrest Vineyards