One of the nation’s oldest continuously-running vineyards, Beaulieu Vineyards has a fascinating history. Book ahead to include a private tour and barrel tasting with your visit to the estate in Rutherford, California, the heart of Napa Valley.
BV was established in 1900 by Georges de Latour, whose name still graces the private reserve labels. Because in 1908, Latour signed a contract with the Catholic Church to provide sacramental wine, the estate was one of a handful that managed to survive Prohibition. In 1939, a three-year-old Beaulieu Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon priced at a new record high of $1.50 took home the gold medal from the Golden Gate International Exposition. BV has been building strength upon strength ever since and is well-known for its acclaimed Cabernet Sauvignon, among other labels.
Outstanding vineyard sites
Beau lieu means “beautiful place” in French, and that it is. Blessed with outstanding Napa Valley vineyard sites covering several terrains and climates, Beaulieu Vineyards is able to produce excellent wines of intense varietal expression.
Have you heard of all these grapes?
The coolest of these regions, Carneros, is especially well-loved by Merlot and Syrah grapes. Cabernet Sauvignon vines thrive in the warmer area around St. Helena. Near Napa Valley’s warmest northern tip, Calistoga, there are diverse vines including Cabernet Sauvignon, Muscat Canelli, Sauvignon Musque, Merlot, Zinfandel, Touriga, Petite Sirah, Tempranillo, Charbono, Syrah, Sangiovese, Malbec, Carignane, Marsanne, Mourvedre and Rousanne. In addition, the estate has planted Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Petit Verlot, Valdigule, Carignane. BV also maintain four acres of experimental vines training on an array of trellising systems.
Learn about the philosophy of André Tchelistcheff, the most influential winemaker in Napa Valley history, and his contributions to the legacy to BV followed to this day. A fascinating tour led by a wine educator encompasses a heritage room with archives, a room of 100-year-old giant redwood tanks which hold 29,000 gallons each, winemaker lessons in production, 35 major soil condition facts and figures, and more. For example, can you guess how much a ton of grapes sells for? Book an 11:00 a.m. or a 2:00 p.m. tour online, from $15 to $50 and from 30 to 60 minutes, with different wine tasting options.
Wine tasting rooms
Choose your experience from one of two handsome wine tasting rooms open 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily at 1960 St. Helena Highway in Rutherford, California, 60 miles from San Francisco. Drink responsibly.