David & Marieke Arizini, Proprietors
David's family has been involved in the wine industry his entire life which nurtured his life long dream--to produce a world class wine for all to enjoy.
After graduating college, he moved to California as a wine salesman where he met Marieke. Throughout their courtship, whether a casual gathering with loved ones, a dinner while traveling, or watching a sunset, they have always marveled at how a special bottle of wine dramatically enhances the experience.
In 2017, they discovered Swirling Hawk Vineyards, a vineyard they knew would produce wines of exceptional quality and complexity. Swirling Hawk is singularly focused on delivering Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that will embody the unique air, land and sea characteristics surrounding this extraordinary vineyard.
Gianni Abate, Winemaker
Gianni grew up on his family's asparagus farm in California’s Central Valley. He attended the University of the Pacific with aspirations of becoming a pharmacist. After working as a lab technician without a clear career path, Gianni found himself working in the laboratories of several San Joaquin County wineries. It was in these wine labs that Gianni was exposed to the joys of wine making. This experience sparked his ambition to make world-class wines for the past 18 years.
Gianni discovered his true passion for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay while working with Robert Mondavi, sourcing grapes from Santa Lucia Highlands through Santa Maria. In 2005, Gianni decided to move to Morgan Winery to focus exclusively on Pinot Noir and Chardonnay from the Santa Lucia Highlands appellation. After harnessing his craft with Morgan, he was thrilled with the opportunity to become the head winemaker at the iconic Chalone Vineyards.
In 2017, he met David & Marieke at Swirling Hawk Vineyards. They shared a vision to produce top-quality Pinot Noir and Chardonnay that vividly expresses the terrior of Swirling Hawk Vineyards. Gianni was intrigued and a partnership was born.
Ricardo Maldonado, Vineyard Manager
Ricardo Maldonado is a vineyard manager with broad experience in the agriculture industry. Several years ago, the intricacies of managing a vineyard combined with his passion for wine, led him to focus on vineyard management. As the owner of Central Coast Vineyard Services, he helps vineyard owners realize their dreams by helping clients make the very best wines their land can produce.
Rick met David & Marieke in 2017 at Swirling Hawk Vineyards and was instantly intrigued by the challenges of their mountaintop vineyard. Recognizing their unyielding commitment to quality, he knew the grapes produced at Swirling Hawk would thrive under his stewardship. Their partnership was forged out their mutual desire to grow grapes that will produce world-class Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.
Jesus Dorantes, the Vine Whisperer
Jesus has been an integral part of the property since its inception in 2005. When David and Marieke purchased the vineyard in 2017, he was excited to expand his role to become a key member of the Swirling Hawk team, pursuing the production of world-class Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. In addition to ensuring optimum health and well-being of the current vineyards, Jesus has been working hard on the vineyard’s expansion, establishing new vineyard blocks on the north-west side of the property. The ultimate vine whisperer, Jesus remains devoted to the health and maintenance of Swirling Hawk Vineyards.