Curtis Hascall was introduced to Shale Oak Winery while working for Kevin Patrick Riley. He was impressed with the project, and found owner Al Good’s values and sustainable vision to be completely in line with his own. The transition to becoming Shale Oak’s winemaker was a natural one, as Curtis has had a hand every vintage since the first in 2008.
Born in Watford, England, Curtis intended on becoming a master beer brewer when he grew up. He moved from the San Francisco Bay area to San Luis Obispo where he became a food-science graduate of Cal Poly State University. His focus on making beer took a turn, however, when a friend hired him to drag hoses in the cellar at Norman Vineyards in Paso Robles. After working there for a few years, he took advantage of an opportunity to work a harvest at Cumulus Winery in Orange, Australia. He would have considered staying longer than the one vintage, but he found the beer in Australia to be too expensive and to frankly not taste that great!
Curtis is now happy to be making wine back in Paso Robles; beautiful wine country where better, more affordable beer is readily available.