Will Sawyer began farming the land that is now Sunset Hill Vineyard in the early 1900s. He was the only farmer in the state to never replace his oxen for the tractor. In 1974, Salvatore Caruso purchased Will’s farm. When Sal wasn't piloting planes for Delta Airlines, he was farming the land. The family kept sheep, horses, ducks, cows and goats, and grew fruits and vegetables.
EAST MEETS WEST
In 1999, Matt Caruso moved to Los Angeles to pursue his acting career where he met Donna Moore, a sports producer. Donna was a wine enthusiast and introduced Matt to the joy of wine tasting on their third date. From 2001 to 2007, they explored the many vineyards along California’s southern and central coasts, and visited over 100 wineries in Paso Robles talking to winemakers, helping in the tasting room, and drinking a lot of wine!
WEST GOES EAST
While visiting the family homestead back in Lyme, Matt looked out upon the land and realized it was an ideal spot for a vineyard. The rest is history, (and a huge amount of work, of course!).
THE WINE BARN
During the summer of 2011 when the wine barn was being built, one of Donna and Matt's favorite musicians, Amy Winehouse, passed away. To honor Amy, and all the musicians in their family, they decided to call the wine barn the Winehouse, where live music is still played.
As a young boy, Gary Weed worked on the farm with Will. Today, Gary still helps out on the farm with his wife Carol, during harvest.