Our family

Rich in History
Bounded by Tradition

Notch Founders

Steeped in Mission-era history and Wild West mythology, Santa Margarita Ranch is today owned by three longtime local winegrowing and ranching families who are committed to advancing the land’s legacy of “early California rancho hospitality.”

Karl Wittstrom

Owner
Karl Wittstrom oversees the daily management and operations of Notch Winery. Karl is an entrepreneur, winegrower, rancher and longtime Paso Robles area resident who was raised amid his family’s ranching and farming business. Karl is a director of the California Mid State Fair in Paso Robles, and he is a member of the California Cattlemen’s Association, California Farm Bureau and a past director of the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance. He oversees his own family vineyard and co-owns Margarita Vineyard and Notch Winery.

Doug Filipponi

Owner
Doug Filipponi is a longtime local winegrower and Paso Robles native who oversees all vineyard operations for Ancient Peaks Winery. Doug was named “Wine Industry Person of The Year” by his wine industry peers at the 2006 California Mid State Fair in Paso Robles. He is also the president of Filipponi & Thompson Drilling, a past president of the Paso Robles Wine Country Alliance, and a past chairman of the Paso Robles Wine Festival. Doug is co-owner of Margarita Vineyard and Ancient Peaks Winery.

Wine is all about the excitement and passion in the glass

Wine Concept
Great grapes give you the opportunity to make great wines; the distinct character of each Notch wine is sure to impress.

Wine is made of countless pieces. But if only one piece is missing, you will notice it! Enjoy!

The Boots on the Ground

Notch team

Stewart Cameron

Winemaker
Stewart Cameron oversees our daily winery operations and is involved in all facets of winemaking at Notch along with Director of Winemaking Mike Sinor. After studying cellular and molecular biology in college, Stewart moved to San Luis Obispo. Here, found himself drawn to the wine industry. He caught the winemaking bug while working in a winery lab in Paso Robles, and he later joined Notch in 2006. He worked his way up to the position of assistant winemaker and was promoted to winemaker in 2013, demonstrating an innate talent for winemaking along the way.

Jamie Muniz

Vineyard Manager
Jaime Muniz has been working at Santa Margarita Ranch since the first grapes were planted in 1999. Jaime is a longtime Central Coast resident and a graduate from  Paso Robles High School. When Notch co-owner and viticulturist Doug Filipponi took over vineyard operations in 2005, Jaime’s hard work and dedication did not go unnoticed. A year later, Jaime was promoted to assistant vineyard manager and then to vineyard manager in 2009. “I’m always pushing hard, and I never stop learning,” he says. “I love working for a family-owned operation that is dedicated to quality.”

Mike Sinor

Director of Winemaking
Mike Sinor is recognized as one of the Central Coast’s highest-rated winemakers. His winemaking career on the Central Coast spans more than 20 years. At Notch Winery, Mike directs the quality and style of the wines, and he also oversees viticultural practices at the winery’s estate Margarita Vineyard. His first complete vintage with Notch was 2006. “The opportunity to work with Margarita Vineyard is what really drew me to Notch,” Mike says. “The growing conditions here are remarkable—and that’s something I’m driven to reflect in the wines of Notch.”