Heidi Bridenhagen

Heidi Bridenhagen

MacRostie Winery and Vineyards (Winemaker)

Heidi Bridenhagen brings a solid scientific background to her winemaking, having first earned a B.S. degree in biochemistry at the University of Colorado at Boulder. She then spent six months traveling throughout Europe, exploring the wines of France, Germany, Italy, and Spain. Upon her return to the States, Heidi’s goal was to pursue a professional career that combined her scientific expertise and her creative skills. This led to positions as an enologist at Jackson Family Wines and Clos du Bois, where she was able to deepen her knowledge of winemaking.

To broaden her experience still more, Heidi did cellar work at Delegat’s Wine Estate in New Zealand for six months, where she was involved in its reserve and vineyard-designate programs. Returning to the U.S., she joined Sonoma-Cutrer, honing her winemaking skills alongside noted winemakers Mick Schroeter and Cara Morrison.

Heidi moved on to MacRostie Winery & Vineyards as its assistant winemaker in 2011, where she was able to innovate and work with smaller lots of fruit. Along with Steve MacRostie, who as her mentor taught her about viticulture and shared his knowledge derived from many years of winemaking, she ran numerous trials on small lots in which variables such as levels of extraction, use of whole clusters, and strains of yeasts were explored.

She was promoted to the position of winemaker in 2013, a role in which she not only controls what goes on during vinification but also interacts with her growers to ensure production of the highest quality fruit. To maintain the diversity resulting from the multiple sources of grapes she uses, Heidi does as many as 130 small fermentations for each vintage. The result is a wide range of flavors that are blended in the Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs for which the MacRostie is noted. She is also the winemaker at Dough Wines, a wine brand of the James Beard Foundation, and makes Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and red blends there.

Outside of the wineries, Heidi enjoys time with her young family. She is also active on the Sonoma County Vintners Trade Education Committee, which is dedicated to educating and advocating on behalf of the wineries of Sonoma County.