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Our Story

Maui’s only winery began in 1974 with a partnership between C. Pardee Erdman, owner of ʻUlupalakua Ranch, and Emil Tedeschi, who came from a family history of winemaking in Calistoga, California. But the story of this place started long before that. In 1841, King Kamehameha III leased what is now ʻUlupalakua Ranch and MauiWine to L.L. Torbert for farming and ranching development. Misfortune befell Torbert forcing the land for sale.

Captain James Makee purchased the property in 1856 and set about creating the memorable Rose Ranch. The Makee family would prove to embody hospitality, hosting visitors including King Kalākaua and Queen Kapi’olani in warm and celebratory fashion. Wine and food played a central part in the festivities. C. Pardee Erdman purchased the ranch in 1963 and has since maintained the ranching, paniolo, and farming cultures that formed this area. When Erdman and Tedeschi came together in 1974, they had both the rich volcanic land they needed and the know-how to work it into something new and unique. Together they identified the perfect growing location for the vines, 23 acres of south-facing Maui countryside which sits at an elevation of 1,700-1,850 feet. Together they figured out how to refit existing buildings on the former Rose Ranch estate for winemaking and hosting guests.

In the late 1980s, Tedeschi left Maui to return to his home in California, and the business operations were embraced by Paula Hegele. Under her leadership, we have continued to refine our products and expand distribution to 18 states and four countries around the globe. We also continue to develop the winery tour experience, offering tastings in the King’s Cottage and Historic Jail, visits to the vineyard, and private events. We believe that wines are grown, not made. We remain true to the distinct combination of volcanic soil and climate conditions found in our island vineyard and the unparalleled taste of the juicy, Maui Gold pineapple. Meticulous care, innovation, experimentation, and personal passion come together to create great wines with flavors that are unmistakably Maui. Visiting our winery is a cultural experience.

A window to the ʻUlupalakua Ranch way of life and a glimpse of Maui's past. Our vines are rooted in the volcanic soil and the traditions of the upcountry community. The wines we make embody the distinct climate and growing conditions that make this place beautiful and challenging. Our wines and the experience of visiting our property offer depth, breadth, and longevity. We continue to learn, change, and grow. We have a lot of fun getting to sit down and share the wines together. We love getting to share the wines, our story, and our sense of hospitality with others.

The Team

For the past 25 years, Paula has led MauiWine and defined the mission of the company. She has set the standard of excellence that encompasses the winery, vineyards, and tasting room operations. Her indomitable spirit and enthusiasm set the stage for our work environment as well the guest experience here in ‘Ulupalakua. Paula believes in the inherent value of farming, for what it does for the community and visitors alike. With a great team at her side, MauiWine moves forward with the rich traditions of ‘Ulupalakua at its core.

Ten years ago Ian discovered a passion for agriculture while working in the Oregon turf industry. Determined to cultivate his newfound interest in farming, he earned a degree in Agricultural Sciences from Oregon State University. In 2012, he joined the MauiWine team in production where he developed a passion for working with machines. Today, Ian thrives at the intersection of manufacturing and agriculture and splits his time between directing vineyard operations and winery production operations. When Ian’s not at home on his Upcountry farm he’s on the tennis court or hiking with his family in the backcountry.

Keone is a native of Upcountry Maui where he has experienced the wine-making process from the ground up. At MauiWine, he has worked in the vineyard, production, and now the cellar. As cellar master, he handles much of the process from crush to bottling. Keone is easygoing by nature but lets nothing slide when it comes to his cellar. We see his work ethic and attention to detail pay off in each wine, and his leadership skills extend to after work hours when he coaches local youth basketball.

Bill was raised in a small eastern Washington town where his family has been farming for more than 100 years. After high school, he enlisted in the U.S. Coast Guard and attended the USCG Engineering School in Yorktown, Virginia. Here, and subsequently over 20 years as a lead maintenance manager at a medical company in Santa Barbara, California, Bill built the wide array of skills and experience that keep our winery running like a well-oiled machine. Since 2006, Bill has cared for our equipment and served as a “MacGyver” jack of all trades throughout the wine production process.

Having spent half her life in Washington state, Tamara was certainly no stranger to great wine. Eventually, an insatiable interest in all things wine developed within her, from the geeky plant chemistry to the subtle art of defining aromas and flavors in different varietals. When the chance to move to Maui arose in 2016, Tamara jumped, and traded in her 20-year career in holistic medicine for a dream job at MauiWine. Spending each day sharing her love for wine and for the island with guests from all over the globe?… she couldn’t ask for anything more. When she’s not in the tasting room, you’ll find Tamara on the ocean in an outrigger canoe or on her lanai enjoying a glass of wine.

Henry grew up on Ulupalakua Ranch, working his summers in the vineyard where he began absorbing the winemaking process from the ground up. Henry left Maui to attend college in Oregon, where he earned a bachelors degree in management, minoring in wine studies. While getting his education, Henry worked for some of the most well established wineries in the Willamette Valley. Shortly after graduating, the pull of the island called him back to Maui where he could apply his experiences and take his place amidst the incomparable landscape and heritage of his childhood home.

There’s never a dull moment for Beth, who handles a wide variety of responsibilities with the winery’s administration and corporate affairs. She’s been with MauiWine since 2003, bringing 14 years of experience with Maui Land & Pine. Beth loves working closely with the land and learning more about the wine industry every day. She’s also pretty sure that her daily drive through ‘Ulupalakua wins the prize for “world’s most beautiful commute”!