With over 40 years of leadership in Central Coast winemaking, the Hahn family has built and continues to cultivate, strong relationships with small family vineyard owners like themselves, who are recognized for growing prized Cabernet Sauvignon.
Paul Clifton, Director of Winemaking
Paul Clifton took the helm of the Smith & Hook winemaking program in 2003 and helped lead the winery’s transition from the Santa Lucia Highlands to new, warmer appellations better suited to Bordeaux varietals, starting with nearby Paso Robles. With the blessing of owner Nicky Hahn, Paul spent the next two decades exploring neighboring regions and vineyards, meeting the people and walking the vineyards, always on the lookout for potential new partners for Smith & Hook.
A self-proclaimed “Cabernet-lover,” Megan Conatser joined the Smith & Hook team in 2011 as Assistant Winemaker, working alongside Paul Clifton to push the envelope in the cellar, and seeking innovative new ways to produce robust yet elegant Central Coast reds. She was named head winemaker in 2017 and continues Smith & Hook’s search for exciting new fruit sources, recently adding the Paicines AVA of San Benito County to the mix.