Like many great ideas, the idea to form Hatton Daniels came out over a few bottles of wine shared between friends. Recognizing the talented winemaking skills of Daniel Fishman, his co-owners and friends John Hatton, Daniel Caddigan, and John Black pooled resources and pursued the shared vision of Hatton Daniels Wine Cellars.
Hatton Daniels was founded in 2009 with the goal of allowing each vintage to speak for itself, without trying to force any style upon the wines. Over time as we have gotten more comfortable with our vineyards and added new wines, our philosophy has evolved to embrace the idea that the best way for a wine to express itself is to ensure that it is made from nothing but grapes, with no additions (other than a small sulfur addition to protect from oxidation in bottle). This means that the fruit needs to be picked early enough that it has plenty of natural acidity, and this leads to wines that are a bit lighter in style, but that are full of energy, and still have plenty of depth and complexity.
Dan first fell in love with wine thanks to the Wine Appreciation 101 class he took at Cornell his senior year. He first planned to pursue a career in Academia, but decided to leave his Psychology PhD program in Vancouver in 2007 to pursue his dream of making wine in California. After working his first harvest as an intern for the Donum Estate in 2007, Dan went on to work at two wine shops, Wally’s in LA, and Calvert Woodley in DC, as well as intern at Wither Hills in New Zealand. In 2008 he returned to Sonoma to intern for Auteur and Eric Kent, and was hired as a shared assistant between the two brands after harvest. Hatton Daniels was founded the following year in 2009. In 2012 Dan took over as Winemaker for the Donum Estate.