Spencer Hoopes and his daughter Lindsay are focused on making great Cabernets that are unique expressions of the viticultural areas that make Napa internationally renowned.
Spencer Hoopes – Principal Owner
A former anti-trust attorney and manufacturer and wholesaler of automotive parts, Spencer Hoopes grew up on a farm in the high desert in southeast Arizona. Farming, though not grape-growing, has always been part of his DNA.
A random meeting led Spencer to a wine tasting at a wine shop on Union Street in San Francisco. Inspired, Spencer created a wine club with friends and like-minded Bordeaux and Burgundy wine aficionados. Spencer’s serious interest in wine continued to grow, and he started collecting wine. Then Spencer bought ten acres in the Napa Valley in the southern part of the Oakville Appellation. In 1983 Spencer planted the vineyard with new Cabernet Sauvignon vines, using the phylloxera-resistant St. George rootstock and a Bordeaux Wente clone. Spencer still produces from these vines today, as they survived the notorious phylloxera epidemic of the early 1990s!
The grapes from this Oakville vineyard were first sold to other top wineries in Napa. “The grapes were so good, I decided to make some of them into my own wine,” says Spencer Hoopes. Family dinners became creative brand-building sessions where his daughter Lindsay, now the new General Manager for the Hoopes Family Vineyards, learned the business ropes from her father.
In 1999, the Hoopes family launched its own label. And in 2006, Spencer purchased and revived the Liparita brand, one of the original wineries in Napa to designate AVA-specific wines. Today Spencer and Lindsay walk the vineyards and make plans for the future for this very successful soil. “With the combination of the soil, the rootstock, the clone, and the way we are farming, we get a really unique Cabernet. The fruit has really bright fruit flavors and produces a fantastic nose in the glass, and you get a bright fruit in the mouth,” says Spencer. The Hoopes Vineyard grapes are now farmed primarily for Hoopes Cabernet.
Spencer is an avid outdoorsman and accomplished marksman, who also has a passion for fly fishing, skiing, camping and spending time outdoors. Spencer has also passed on his love for dogs to his daughter Lindsay. After his favorite terrier, Dante, passed away, the family acquired two rescue dogs, littermates Sophie and Maya. Spencer’s love for family and the land, as well as his spirit for adventure, is alive and well.
Lindsay Hoopes – Owner and General Manager
Lindsay Hoopes has always been a wine enthusiast, due in large part to growing up on the vineyard. She grew up walking in the vineyards alongside her dad, Spencer Hoopes. Together the family spent many afternoons conversing about growing cycles and wine branding. This gave Lindsay a unique perspective. Those afternoon conversations have served her very well in the wine business, where she is one of the youngest winery General Managers in Napa and one of a very small number of women who run wineries in the Napa Valley.
Lindsay has advanced degrees in business and law. She is a graduate of Phillips Academy, and Georgetown University. She has a Doctorate from Hastings College of the Law, and a LLM from Trinity College in Ireland. Before returning in 2013 to manage the family’s wine business, she completed the E&J Gallo Management Development Program, after which she was recruited by Williams-Sonoma to manage production and supply chain logistics for Pottery Barn throughout Asia, Europe and South America. Most recently she worked as an Assistant District Attorney in San Francisco. Her cases were high-profile and often in the headlines. Lindsay is currently working on her winemaking certificate at UC Davis and continues to volunteer for the San Francisco DA’s Office in the Homicide Unit. She is fluent in Spanish, Catalan, and Mandarin.
An avid traveler, ski enthusiast, photographer, chef and lover of animals, Lindsay brings a genuine passion and spirit of adventure to the winery. The Hoopes scion has many new ideas for the winery, but retains a sincere reverence for the history of the region and her farm origins. Lindsay Hoopes is a member of Next Gen, the “next generation” of winemakers who grew up in the Napa Valley, and in many cases worked alongside their families in the wine business before leaving to go to school or work in other places.
Lindsay has been the General Manager of Hoopes Vineyard since March 2013.