News & Events

Meet Paul and Patty Hoover, Owners of Still Waters Vineyards

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The Hoover Family; Patty, Paul, Ryan, Stephanie, Ben and Nancy

Paul and Patty are both California natives who came to Cal Poly in the late seventies.   Paul graduated with a degree in Agriculture and Pat graduated from the Child Development Program.  Pat worked as a legal assistant in San Luis Obispo, and after having children, worked for Atascadero Unified School System in a variety of teaching positions.  Prior to running Still Waters Vineyards, Paul immersed himself in several careers while managing to stay connected to his love of the land, whether planting large vegetable gardens or leading local 4-H groups.  He worked in the hospitality industry for 15 years, growing from bartender to executive vice president of a hotel management company.  He also invested more than 20 years as an insurance broker for Morris and Garritano Insurance in San Luis Obispo.   Paul and Pat raised two children in Atascadero who participated in all of the agricultural ventures.

 As amateur beer makers and with budding interest in wine making, the Hoovers began experimenting with their own small vineyard as their children grew and their need for space for grazing animals declined.  When our children were graduating and moving on, we invested in a larger vineyard and started to develop the winery and tasting room that is now Still Waters.  Although “Hoover” could have been an entirely appropriate name, “Still Waters Vineyards” was anointed when our daughter, Stephanie, designed the label  reflecting our family’s favorite pastime of water-skiing and always looking for the perfect “still water”.  The original label is a picture that Pat took of their son, Ben,  fishing on a quiet lake of still water above Lake Tahoe.

Still Waters Vineyards is the perfect complement to a lifelong dream.  Our goal is to stay small, have fun and focus on quality.  Paul  and Pat can both be found in the tasting room and are always available for a great meal or a quick tour and tasting in the barrel room.  Ben and Stephanie and their wonderful spouses drop in and out with frequency and love to soak up the atmosphere of the gorgeous grounds that they have helped create.  Above all, Paul and Pat know that they would not be where they are without the amazing staff that supports them.   The Still Waters family stretches well beyond the Hoover clan and embodies so many wonderful people that have been so loyal to us…especially  our general manager Kasey and our vineyard manager Carlos. Without them, and all of the rest of our supporting crew, this dream would never be fulfilled.  Paul is constantly thinking of ways to improve the wines and our vineyard practices, it is truly a passion for both of us.  We don’t feel the need to grow our product through distribution, but to just continue with our long time motto of focusing on quality and developing those wonderful relationships with our customers, then we can continue to have FUN!

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Music, Food and Wine – Perfect for Mother’s Day

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This Mother’s Day, May 13th we are excited to have Grammy Award Winning artist Louie Ortega at Still Waters Vineyards. His southern blues meets Latin fusion style of music will make you want to get up and dance! This will be a perfect treat for any mom to spend an afternoon relaxing and enjoying a glass of wine. There is plenty of shade under the trees overlooking the vineyard so bring a lawn chair or blanket and take in the beautiful afternoon.

We will have our taco bar for lunch and wine will be available for purchase by the glass or bottle. Can you think of a better way to spend the afternoon? Music, Food, Wine… Sounds like a Picture Perfect Sunday to me!

Here is a link to a video from our last Picture Perfect Sunday. Thanks to all those who came and enjoyed the Mystery Trees and we hope you can make it for Louie Ortega too!

See you on Sunday

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In the vines…..

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In late December, we plant a cover crop which consists of peas, barley and grasses in order to protect the soils from heavy winter rains and run-off.  The cover crop also provides organic matter and nitrogen for the soil and vines.  We plant this cover crop in every other row so that during our February/ March pruning, we can toss the cut canes into the non-planted rows.  Then we can go through with a mower-shredder that can easily mulch the canes back into the soil.  We then disk those rows in order to get a good mix. 

The cover crop row is mowed just prior to our first spring frost.  This allows the colder air, which settles to the ground, to move underneath the vines rather than be held close to the new buds.  The newly mowed cover crop row provides continued soil protection for unexpected rains, beneficial areas for native insects and easier access to the vineyard during harvest if we receive heavy rains in the fall.  We alternate these planted rows every other year in order to maintain the most optimum soil conditions and erosion control.  This is just one of the many sustainable vineyard practices that we utilize here at Still Waters Vineyards!

This is a picture of a root of a Dundale Pea plant.  This is a legume which stores nitrogen in small nodules that look like sand.  The nitrogen is used in the development of the pea.  In our case, the peas are mowed prior to bloom and the nitrogen is left in the soil that is eventually broken down and used by the grape vines.


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Primitivo 2012

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Our 2012 Primitivo is complex with flavors of wild strawberry and white pepper. This wine is full bodied and elegant.

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Zinfandel Festival, March 16th-18th

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Friday & Saturday Taste test – we’ll be pouring our first release Estate Primitivo, along with our Gold Medal Estate Zinfandel. Can you guess the varietal? Appetizers, estate olive oil and specials all day. Free tasting to festival ticket holders. Vineyard and winery tours, and barrel tastings hourly. Saturday evening we hope to see you at the Grand Tasting Event

Sunday Back by popular demand – our famous taco and homemade tamale bar! Rocio will be making her delicious tamales and Pat her yummy tacos. $8/pp; Complimentary/Club members.

Join us in the olive grove for lunch and the live music of local favorite Jill Knight from 12 – 3 p.m. Amazing food, breathtaking views and award-winning wines. Who could ask for anything more? Okay, we’ll throw in some case specials too!

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Clone 3 Cuvée 2012

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Our 2012 Clone 3 Cuvée is a wonderful Bordeaux blend with a twist. 27% Merlot, 27% Malbec, 27% Cabernet Franc, 8% Syrah, 6% Petite Sirah, and 5 Cabernet Sauvignon. Luscious fruits and chocolate create this full and well balanced wine.

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Cuvée Blanc and homemade Chinese Food, YUMMY!

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Every now and then we get a guest who fills us in on the wonderful ways they have paired our wines. I recently received an email from a club member explaining the food she paired with our Cuvée Blanc. The menu sounded delicious and she graciously shared her recipes.

Thanks Sharen for the great pairings!

Baked Egg Rolls

½ Lb ground pork

½ tsp ground ginger

4 cloves garlic, chopped

¼ c olive oil

½ c shredded cabbage

½ c shredded carrots

egg roll wrappers [small wonton size]

  1. Season pork and garlic with ginger and mix thoroughly. Heat mixture in a medium skillet, stirring, until pork is cooked through and no longer pink. Set aside. Add the cabbage, carrots.. Mix all together.
  2. Working quickly, lay out wonton wrappers – place about a tsp of the mixture in the center of each wonton wrapper. Bring up the fur corners of the wrapper an lift gently intoa mini muffin pan. Carefully fold the edges over each other. Brush a bit of water on top to help seal the egg roll.
  3. Place the muffin tin in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes or until lightly browned.
  4. Serve w/a dipping sauce made up of soy sauce & dry mustard.

Spicy Stir Fry Chicken and Vegetables

4 (4 ounce) boneless skinless chicken breast halves

3 tablespoons cornstarch

2 tablespoons soy sauce

½  tsp ground ginger

½ tsp 5 spice

4 cloves garlic, chopped

3 tablespoons cooking oil, divided

1 cup sliced celery (1/2 inch pieces)

1 cup thinly sliced carrots

1 small onion, cut into wedges

1 cup chicken broth

1 tsp peanut butter

1 tbsp. red pepper flakes

  1. Cut chicken into 1/2-in. strips; place in a resealable plastic bag. Add cornstarch and toss to coat. Combine soy sauce, ginger and garlic; add to bag and shake well. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  2. In a large skillet or wok, heat 2 tablespoons of oil; stir-fry chicken until no longer pink, about 3-5 minutes. Remove and keep warm. Add remaining oil; stir- fry celery, carrots and onion for 4-5 minutes or until crisp-tender. Mix broth with the peanut butter , then add broth. Return chicken to pan. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly.

Serve w/white rice

Hope you enjoy the recipes and we would love to hear from all of you and your wine pairing ideas.



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Roll out the Barrels – A good time had by all!

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Can you think of a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon than barrel tasting????? We had about 80 of our wonderful club members join us in the barrel room to taste through the barrels of 2008 Merlot and 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon. Hard work but someone’s got to do it! There were roughly 10 barrels of each wine and the slight differences the barrels impart were VERY obvious. Whether it was Cabernet Sauvignon in a new French Oak barrel, Merlot in neutral oak, or a difference in yeast; the wine was delicious and we are looking forward to our upcoming releases.

With our club members’ help, we chose the top barrels to use in our 2008 Barrel Select Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008 Reflections and 2008 Merlot. These wines are to be bottled in the next few months and available in the spring club shipment.

As always, Pat did some great appetizers and Paul was in rare form. Climbing up on barrels and letting everyone experience his passion for making wine and the direction Still Waters is heading. We feel the best is yet to come!!

Here are a few pictures of the afternoon:

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Sweetheart Special

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Send your loved ones the perfect pair of Still Waters wines.

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Super Bowl Treats and Wine Pairing

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I know what you’re thinking… how can I possibly pair super bowl snacks with delicious wines , well here are a few tips along with a couple recipes to help you out.

We all know chips and guacamole are a game day favorite, or at least they are here at Still Waters Vineyards, so why not try a slight variation on the tradition.  Instead of the trusty tortilla chips,  use a nice toasted baguette. Instead of the bowl of guacamole, step up the presentation and use homemade guac with lime and cilantro. Serve this as a Guacamole Bruschetta and your guests will be amazed!  Pair this appetizer with our Sauvignon Blanc. The crisp acidity of the Sauvignon Blanc will compliment the richness of the guacamole. (Guacamole Bruschetta  recipe below)

For those of you planning to host a chili cook-off for your super bowl party, wow your guests with this twist on the classic. White Lightning Chicken Chili – a  slightly lighter version then the original tomato based chili.  The base for this chili contains… WINE!   Serve this favorite in warm bread bowl and top with some pepper jack cheese for a zesty finish. Pair this with our Chardonnay or Merlot and enjoy! (White Lightning Chicken Chili recipe below)

Hope these ideas help change up the traditional game day treats and remember our tasting room is open 11-5pm for those of you who would like to skip the game all together and enjoy a taste of wine with us.

Guacamole Bruschetta

(original recipe

½ loaf French bread
1 Clove Garlic
2 Tbsp Olive Oil (Still Waters Of Course!)
2 tomatoes, medium chopped
2 avocados, medium chopped
1/3 cup finely chopped onion
¼ cup chopped cilantro
2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper


Preheat oven to 400 F

Slice the French bread on a diagonal into ½” rounds and place on a baking sheet

Toast the sliced bread in the oven for 3 minutes then flip each piece and toast an additional 3 minutes

Remove the toasted bread from the oven and immediately rub with the clove of garlic

Brush the tops of the garlic rubbed toasts with olive oil and set aside

In a large bowl, combine the chopped tomatoes, avocado, onion, cilantro, lime juice, salt and pepper. Mix together gently making sure the avocado is well coated with the lime juice

Spoon a portion of the mixture onto each of the garlic toasts and enjoy!


(original recipe

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cubed
2 cans great northern beans, rinsed
1 whole white onion, diced
1 cup frozen white corn
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
1 ½ cups fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 bulb fresh garlic, minced
6 habanera peppers
½ cup white wine
1 can chicken broth
2 tsp. cumin powder
1 tsp. coriander powder
1 tbsp. ground white pepper
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 lime, squeezed for juice
½ cup sour cream
½ cup shredded pepper jack cheese


Heat olive oil in large sauté pan to medium-high heat, and add garlic, onions, and chicken. Sauté for 10-15 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink.

In a large Dutch oven add chicken broth, cumin, coriander, ground white pepper, lime juice, habanera peppers (if mild chili is preferred, use fewer hot peppers, as desired – the quantity given is very hot!), and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, cover with lid, and let simmer for 10-15 minutes.  Add the chicken, garlic, and onion mixture, plus the corn, beans, yellow bell pepper, mushrooms, and white wine.

Cover and let simmer for approximately 30-35 minutes.  Garnish with sour cream and shredded jack cheese.  Serve with crusty french bread and a glass of Still Waters Chardonnay or Merlot!

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