Beaulieu Vineyard, founded in 1900 by Georges de Latour, a native of France, and led for many years by the legendary winemaker Andre Tchelistcheff, Beaulieu Vineyard has one of the oldest and most romantic histories in the Napa Valley. De Latour bought his first vineyard in Rutherford and named it “beau lieu,” French for "beautiful place.” His vision was to create a serene wine chateau and the estate is still one of the most scenic in the region. Beaulieu’s Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon dates back to the 1930s, and it quickly became one of California’s premier wines. Tchelistcheff, trained as a wine master in France, shaped the character of BV’s wines during the 1950s and 1960s. Today the winery is still famous for its BV Georges de Latour Private Reserve, but also makes Merlot, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and Zinfandel, thanks in part to the acquisition of vineyards in other parts of Napa Valley. Altogether the winery owns 1,029 acres and produces a total of 750,000 bottles a year.
For this Beaulieu Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford 2012, They hand harvested the grapes and rushed them across the road to their winery. To bring out the rich, layered fruit expression inherent in Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon, they destemmed the grapes and then cold soaked the must for two to three days for gentle flavor extraction. During the eight- to twelve-day fermentation, they pumped over the cap to incorporate the flavor-rich skins into the juice. Malolactic fermentation rounded the flavors (part done in-barrel) and 18 months of barrel aging infused the wine with oak spice nuances. It’s a blend of 97% cabernet Sauvignon, 2% cabernet franc, 1% Merlot.
This wine exudes its sense of place—the personality and quality of Cabernet Sauvignon grown on Napa Valley’s Rutherford Bench. Their 2012 Beaulieu Vineyard Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignon captures this area with briary blackberry, dark plum, black cherry, chocolate and tobacco leaf. The famous Rutherford Dust gives the wine cocoa-powder tannins and texture, while well-integrated oak adds toasty mocha notes to the generous aromas and expansive flavors.