With Handwritten Wines focus on hillside and mountain Napa Valley District Cabernet Sauvignons, we were inspired to share the following insight into each District and the wines we create from these renowned appellations. We've also included information on our Carneros District Chardonnay and the one wine we source from outside of Napa, our Sta. Rita Hills Pinot Noir.
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The Jessup Cellars story is one of passion, family, hard work, resilience and, of course, fantastic wine. Over the past two decades, Jessup Cellars has earned a loyal following for our ultra-premium wines of distinction and a word-of-mouth reputation for hosting one of the friendliest tasting rooms in all of wine county. Guests at Jessup Cellars may choose to taste at our wine bar or relax with sit-down, hosted tastings in our spacious gallery amongst curated art, which features rotating installations by celebrated regional and national artists. The winery also specializes in hosting interactive cultural experiences with a focus on music, art, fashion and film.
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It was never clear how this adventure was going to turn out. In the late 60’s when my family started to grow wine grapes in Napa Valley, there was no one to show them the way. There was plenty of advice, to be sure, but in truth no one had started a successful Napa vineyard since Prohibition. They were, in a word, crazy.
Their lunacy was infectious, however, and a few other enterprising souls joined the gambit: Tony Baldini, our first viticulturist; David Whitehouse, our first “real” winemaker; Richard DeGarmo, Mr. fix-it; Mary Ware, queen of the office and everyone’s schedule. I grew up with them and consider them all family. A shared passion brought them to us, and my parents received them with open arms. They settled into their respective posts, not as hired hands, but as equals in a shared endeavor. As I settle into my own role in the family business, I find this remarkable dynamic preserved and count myself blessed to spend my days working with old and new friends that quickly feel like family.
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Steve Bell brings to the winery a unique history of skills and experience. A fortuitous ½ credit wine appreciation class in a college led to Steve’s destiny in the wine industry. After graduation Steve headed straight to the Napa Valley where he spent twelve years as the vineyard manager for Freemark Abbey Winery and then over to the Sonoma County side where he managed all of Knight’s Valley’s vineyards for Beringer for another 19 years. In the meantime, Steve spent his free time making wine at home on the weekends. He recognized the importance that the quality of the grapes made the wine.
In 2012, after 30 years of amateur winemaking and with the encouragement of his wife Sher, Steve created his own boutique winery, Campana Ranch Winery, which is now producing 750 cases of ultra-premium red and white wines. Campana is the Spanish word for bell. Decades of vineyard management puts Steve in the best place from which to make decisions about crop choice.
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High-Craft, high-touch meticulous winemaking is at the core of everything we do. We are dedicated to exploring, developing, and mastering artisanal techniques to create the perfect glass of wine in every vintage. This constant drive for perfection defines all that we do.
Founding winemaker Justin Meyer wanted to understand the nuance of vineyard sites and how wine matured over time. He diligently laid out our estate vineyard into small blocks to capture the unique microclimates and soil changes. Each block was separately fermented and cellared. The wine was only blended once it had properly evolved. This small lot approach resulted in wines of unmistakable character that highlighted the nuances of every vineyard block and vintage.
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Julien Fayard gained his knowledge and defined his core winemaking style from working at grand Chateaux in France such as Lafite Rothschild and Smith Haut Lafitte. In Napa Valley, he's worked alongside renowned winemaker Philippe Melka. He has come to be a Napa Valley veteran after many years of working with some of the most highly acclaimed and sought after wines from the Napa Valley.
His philosophy is to produce wines that express pure, terroir-driven specificities and characteristics. He believes that as a winemaker, one doesn't control the wine but rather wine style is the result of a combination of soil, climate and vineyard management.
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Our meticulously designed winery is an enduring symbol of everything our family has worked toward for nearly 70 years. It represents three generations committed to crafting wine of the utmost quality. It is a beacon, heralding both our roots and our future in the Napa Valley.
With stunning views of Spring Mountain to the west and Howell Mountain to the east, our winery sits at the heart of Napa Valley, not far from where Mario Trinchero lived when he arrived in California nearly 70 years ago. The 22-acre site houses our winery, tasting room and hospitality center—all overlooking the Cabernet Sauvignon vines on Mario’s Vineyard.
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Robert Mondavi established his namesake winery in 1966 with a vision to create Napa Valley wines that would stand in the company of the world’s finest. He chose To Kalon Vineyard in the heart of the Napa Valley as the home for Robert Mondavi Winery. This first-growth vineyard, located in Oakville, California, is renowned for producing some of the finest Cabernet Sauvignon wines in the world, as well as for its Sauvignon Blanc grapes, from which Mr. Mondavi crafted his signature wine, Fumé Blanc.
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Purchased by Michael Polenske in 2003, Blackbird Vineyards (a former walnut orchard first planted with 5, 717 Merlot vines in 1997) is now an ultra premium label in its own right. Fittingly, the word 'Merlot' is French patois for 'little blackbird.'
An early harbinger of Blackbird's potential arose when Mia Klein of Dalla Valle fame created a Blackbird Vineyard designate for her highly acclaimed 1999 Selene Merlot (no less than 95% of the fruit in the bottle must be from the named vineyard). Three of the top wine critics in the industry - Robert Parker, Stephen Tanzer, and Wine Spectator's James Laube - scored this wine in the 90s.
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The stories of great wineries aren’t written over a few vintages—they are written over decades and generations. They are captured in dusty bottles, and new vintages of wine aging in the finest French oak. As its stewards, we are writing Clos Du Val’s next chapter. When we cut our Cabernet production in half to exclusively focus on estate-grown wines, it was incredibly exciting. It said to people, more than anything else, we care about making extraordinary wines.
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In 2001, Arron became winemaker at St. Clement, collecting a pantheon of vineyards that would make the lauded single vineyard series. In 2004, Aaron moved to Quintessa where he was winemaker and general manager through 2007. Currently he is consulting for Blackbird, Fisher Vineyards, Jericho Canyon, Perliss (The Ravens), Greer, V22, Martin Estate, Adler Deutsch, Quixote, Como No?, Seven Stones and St. Helena Estate. He has chosen clients who, like him, think wine is sexy and aren’t afraid to make something that will be misunderstood by the masses.
Steve fell in love with wine while taking a 1/2-credit wine appreciation class in college. After graduating Steve headed straight to the Napa Valley where he spent 12 years as the vineyard manager for Freemark Abbey and then moved over to the Sonoma County side where he managed all of Knights Valley vineyards for Beringer for another 19 years. Although Steve spent his career as a farmer, he also loved the romance of the wine and the industry; he became passionate about wine making, which he practiced at home during his grape growing tenure.
When his dream of being a fighter pilot in the French army fizzled because of a medical test, Benoit Touquette tried his hand working at an auto body shop, in road construction and even in banking alongside his father. But when he got a job with a mobile bottling line in Bordeaux, he was introduced to the wine business and his career choice started to crystallize. While working toward his Masters diplomas in both Chemistry and Oenology, Benoit worked at several French wineries in a production capacity. His experience made two things clear to him: he didn’t want to work in Bordeaux, where opportunities were limited if you weren’t born into a wine family; he did want to be involved with making high end, limited production wines, wherever that might take him. Upon graduation, with the help of his friend and mentor Michel Rolland, Benoit got a job with winemaking consultant Andy Erickson in California. Eventually he formed his own consulting business with clients such as Hartwell and Jack Quinn. When Realm’s first winemaker left in 2010, Benoit offered to help his friend – and Realm’s founder -- Juan Mercado with blending the 2009 vintage wines. That offer turned into a full-time gig, and Benoit joined Realm in 2011.
Julien Fayard gained his knowledge and defined his core winemaking style from working at grand Chateaux in France such as Lafite Rothschild and Smith Haut Laffite. In Napa Valley, he’s worked alongside renowned winemaker Philippe Melka. He has come to be a Napa Valley veteran after more than a decade of working with some of the most highly acclaimed and sought after wines from the Napa Valley. His philosophy is to produce wines with an identity that express pure, terroir-driven specificities and characteristics. He believes that as a winemaker, one doesn’t control the wine but rather wine style is the result of a combination of soil, climate and vineyard management. Wine style is an elegant combined expression of the fruit, soil, vines and climate. Julien is an entrepreneur with an acute business savvy of the wine industry. He has completed his MBA from top ranking Davis University in Entrepreneurship and Marketing. He brings a dynamic background of quality wine production, business management, winery development and infrastructure.
Dennis and Judy Groth are natives of the South Bay Area of California (Sunnyvale and San Jose) and lived there until 1985, when they moved to Napa Valley. Dennis worked at Hewlett Packard while attending college at San Jose State, and in 1966 began his career as an accountant at Arthur Young & Co. (Now Ernst & Young). He became a CPA in 1968 and a partner of the firm in 1977. In early 1978, he left Ernst & Young to become Chief Financial Officer of Atari, a games and electronics subsidiary of Time Warner. During the years 1978 to 1984, Dennis also served as Executive Vice President, President of the consumer products division, and finally, President of the international division at Atari.
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The idea for Rocca Family Vineyards began many years ago, in the minds of proprietors Mary Rocca and Eric Grigsby. Eric grew up with the stories of his father, a Tennessee farmer-turned-salesman, reminding him of their close connection with the earth and the bounty it bore. Mary, born in the rolling hills of northern California, spent many warm summer days working in her mother’s vegetable garden. Picking prunes and walnuts out of nearby orchards late each year inspired an awe for the bountiful harvest a carefully tended plot of land could produce. While launching their respective careers - Mary as a cosmetic dentist, and Eric as a physician - the pair dreamed of the day when they could re-establish this kind of connection with the land they loved.
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The Pope Valley Winery was founded in 1897 by Ed Haus as Burgundy Winery & Olive Oil Factory. A century later in 1997, the Eakle family, purchased the historic winery and gave it a new life as Pope Valley Winery. In 2009 the next generation of Eakles stepped in to continue building and furthering the family's vision for Pope Valley Winery as a fine winemaking establishment. Currently siblings, David Eakle as winemaker and Diana Eakle Hawkins as general manager, are making great strides in bringing Pope Valley Winery to the next level.
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Nicholson Jones is the collaboration of two unique men who share a common vision to produce delicious California-style wines with a delightful and traditional French accent.
Winemaker Julien Fayard is the creative soul with complete authority over the wine quality while Cal Nicholson juggles everything else. No wine will ever wear the Nicholson Jones label unless it passes the rigorous standards set by Julien.
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Ma(i)sonry Napa Valley offers a unique lifestyle experience in wine country. Originally built in 1904 as a private residence, the manor is one of three stone buildings in Yountville, and one of only two listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
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Eleven Eleven Wines celebrates the culture of wine, food, art and entertainment unlike any venue in the Wine Country. For wine enthusiasts, travelers, art lovers and friends.
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Following a number of years spent working in the software industry, Dave Miner got his start in wine in 1993 as President of Oakville Ranch Vineyards, owned by his late uncle, Robert Miner. Having spent years as an enthusiastic wine consumer and collector, Dave had a natural affinity for the business.
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PlumpJack Winery is a boutique winery in Oakville, California specializing in premium Cabernet Sauvignon wines. PlumpJack was the first winery in Napa Valley to use screwcaps as a wine closure on fine wines.
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The rich legacy of Beaulieu Vineyard began with Georges de Latour's vision of making Napa Valley wines that would rival the finest wines of his native France. Our historical vision of Wine Country in Napa offerings the perfect pairing of insight and indulgence through our premier Wine Tastings.
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The word 'Provenance' (rhymes with renaissance) is derived from the French language, and means "origin," or "source."
A provenance is the record of ownership of a piece of art from its creation to the present. Connoisseurs use a provenance as a guarantee of a work's authenticity. Our name reflects our goal of producing fine wines that are authentic works of art.
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Etude was founded on the philosophy that winemaking begins in the vineyard long before the harvest and that superior grape growing diminishes the need for intervention by the winemaker, resulting in authentic varietal expression.
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The Buoncristiani Brothers are bonded not only by blood, but also by a shared passion, vision, and dedication for handcrafting ultra premium wines that accentuate the enjoyment of life.
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Pott Wine represents the culmination of 25 years of professional wine-making experience. It reflects our love of wine, not only of tasting but of enjoying it with friends and not being afraid to get a little loopy.
Pott Wine is a reflection and an homage to those wines that brought tears to my eyes; a 1959 Romanée-Conti, a ’47 Château Petrus, a 1971 Aßmannshäusen Hollenberg Spätburgunder, a ’70 Mayacamas, a ’54 BV Georges De Latour.
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HALL Wines represents critically acclaimed artisan Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon from two tasting room and winery locations in St. Helena and Rutherford. Owned by Craig and Kathryn Hall, its vineyard collection features five Certified Organic estates producing classic Bordeaux varietals.
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n 1983, with dreams of raising their young family on a farm, Tony and Herta Peju bought thirty acres of vines in the famed Rutherford district of the Napa Valley. Since then, the Peju family has maintained a meticulous focus on the land, fostering sustainable and environmental consciousness across their five estates. Still family-owned and -operated with daughters Lisa and Ariana poised to take the helm, Peju Winery has become an integral piece of the Napa Valley landscape.
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The unique character of Cabernet Sauvignon from Hewitt Vineyard® deserves full expression. Rather than blend it into an ensemble with wines from other vineyards, we let it sing with its own unique voice.
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When Larry and MaryAnn started Moone-Tsai wines in 2003, they created their label with the dream of making rare and remarkable wines bearing the finest fruit from Napa Valley's most heralded vineyards. Guided by this vision, and with Howell Mountain beckoning, Moone-Tsai launched its distinctive, limited production cabernets, chardonnays, and Bordeaux blends - among them, Moone-Tsai's landmark Howell Mountain Hillside Blend.
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Under his cheerful appearance Benoit captivates people with his passion and work ethic, something that Andy Erickson and Michel Rolland have understood. “Benny” is a young man who is about to climb into the highest echelons of Napa Valley wine stardom. This is not because the rabble-rouser “Benny” does not take himself too seriously.
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Beringer is the perfect place to host your special event. We have an array of beautiful and functional spaces for groups of all sizes. The historic Rhine House, Hudson House, and Old Winery are all ideal for an intimate wine tasting, large celebration, or business function. Add our beautiful picnic grounds, bocce ball court, historic caves, and a culinary center headed up by our resident chef plus our famous Beringer vineyards, and it’s everything you need for a memorable event.
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Baldacci Family Vineyards is a California winery located in the Stags Leap District AVA of Napa Valley. Thomas and Brenda Baldacci fell in love with the Napa Valley in 1998.
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Established in 2006, Alpha Omega was created to offer handcrafted wines that blend the Old World with the New World and a winery that exudes a sense of place and hospitality reflective of the Napa Valley farming community.
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On the eastern side of Napa Valley, in the foothills of the Vaca Mountains, there is a secluded vineyard - the vineyard of ROY Estate. The mission of ROY Estate is to produce the very best wines possible from this tiny valley within a valley.
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CADE Estate Winery sits high above the fog line on the dramatic slopes of Howell Mountain, just northeast of the town of St. Helena. The building's striking architecture, a dialogue between gentle contours and strong rectilinear forms, suggests the complexity of our wines– powerful yet nuanced expressions of our mountain terroir. The winery blends right in with the impressive contrasts of our estate, a spot where cultivated vineyard rows meet tall evergreens and native Manzanita trees, all set against a backdrop of staggering Napa Valley vistas for a visitor experience not soon forgotten.
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Whetstone Wine Cellars moved in 2011 to an impressive stand alone tasting room in a historic building that dates back to 1885. Their tasting room is located on Atlas Peak Road (next to Del Dotto Winery); this a significant upgrade from their shared tasting room in downtown Napa. Tastings are by appointment – they also offer special events such as lunches or vineyard tours (also by appointment). This venue offers them a number of options for tastings – when the weather is decent private tastings can take place under the arbor next to the building or on the second level floor behind the building.
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We are dedicated and experienced merchants offering exceptional wine, spirits and the best of Wine Country with a fun, authentic approach and uncompromising standards. In business since 1994, our motto is: “If it's not great, we don't sell it."
In addition, we offer our Portfolio Selection wines made by award-winning winemaker Timothy Milos, who sources some of Napa Valley’s finest grapes. Bounty Hunter currently bottles the following brands: Bounty Hunter, Broken Spur, Gus Rivers, Jailbird, John Galt, Jurisdiction, Jurisprudence, Justice Series, Mr. Bianco, Mr. Rosso, Pursuit, Road Agent, Ridge Runner, Streamside, Tin Star, Vigilante, Waypoint and Weatherby wines.
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Casa Piena is founded upon the Philosophy of old world development merged with new world team building. The roots of this wine adventure go back to Carmen Policy's childhood in Youngstown, Ohio's Smokey Hollow neighborhood. That is where the making and sharing of wine played a central part in the vibrant family life of his largely Italian-American community.
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An elegant wine showing the staying power that a blend of mountain grown Cabernet Sauvignon highly influenced by Cabernet Franc delivers. A wine that involves all your senses and presents itself as pure natural harmony, and serves as the perfect background music to an evening's conversation between two good friends.
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At Stewart Cellars, it's the quest that drives us. The quest for the ideal site, for consistently lush fruit, for the like-minded grower who labors toward the perfect expression of a given vintage. We build lasting relationships with vineyard owners and together we test the limits of what an exceptional patch of soil can yield. Our requirement for the resulting wine is simple: it must deliver beyond expectation every time.
Our quest takes us to some of the most respected vineyards drawing our focus to the taste profile of every block and a blend that fulfills its promise a thousand times over. Only the best of the best bears the Stewart family name.
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Silver Trident Winery opened a Tuscan styled tasting room/home in downtown Yountville in March 2015. Both owners of Silver Trident have spent many years working in the hospitality and luxury markets. Bob Binder is co-founder of Oceania Cruises and Walter Jost has enjoyed a career as an executive in advertising and media.
This tasting room is a unique concept in the Napa Valley – combining wine tasting with a setting that is home to Ralph Lauren furniture, home decor and other accessories. Books and various pieces of artwork are also displayed (non Ralph Lauren items). Bob initially made the connection with Ralph Lauren when his company purchased several ships that needed interior and suite renovations and Ralph Lauren was contacted to provide the interior decorations.
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Located in the acclaimed Rutherford region of Napa Valley, Round Pond is a family-owned and operated estate designed around our vineyards, gardens and orchards.
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aymond Vineyards, founded in 1970, is one of the Napa Valley’s pioneers and great estates. Arriving to Napa in 1933, the Raymond family became deeply connected to the valley’s winemaking origins. In 1970, they established a 90-acre estate in Rutherford that now comprises 300 acres in Rutherford, St. Helena and Jameson Canyon. Five generations of the Raymond family created a Napa icon, with an enduring reputation for elegant wines with a beautiful balance of finesse, power and complexity.
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