Hewitt Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2012
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
The historic Hewitt Vineyard resides on the famed Rutherford Bench, a narrow ribbon of gravel-rich alluvial soils on the western side of the Napa Valley that has - since the late 1800s - produced California's best Cabernet Sauvignon.
William Hewitt purchased this property in 1962 and received guidance in planting the vineyard from legendary Beaulieu Vineyard (BV) winemaker André Tchelistcheff. BV purchased Cabernet Sauvignon from Hewitt Vineyard and included it in its top wines for many years. When Hewitt Vineyard was offered for sale in 2000, Chalone Wine Group President Tom Selfridge, who began his career at Beaulieu and knew first-hand the vineyard's extraordinary quality, jumped at the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to add this treasure to the company's portfolio.
Today, Hewitt Vineyard produces only estate Cabernet Sauvignon from its extraordinary property. Through this exclusive focus, Hewitt is a leader in Rutherford's winemaking renaissance.
The Rutherford sub-region of Napa Valley centers on the town of Rutherford and covers some of Napa Valley’s finest vineyard real estate, spanning from the Mayacamas in the west, to the Vaca Mountains on the other side of the valley.
Inside of the Rutherford AVA, bordering the Mayacamas, is a stretch of uplands called the Rutherford Bench. (These bench lands technically run the length of Oakville as well). Mountain runoff creates deep, well-drained, alluvial soils on the bench, giving vine roots plenty of reason to permeate deep into the ground. The result is wine with great structure and complexity.
Rutherford Cabernet Sauvingons and Bordeaux Blends garner substantial attention for their enticing fragrances of dusty earth and dried herbs, broad and juicy mid-palates and lush and fine-grained tannins. The sub-appellation claims some of the valley’s most prized vineyards today, namely Caymus, Rubicon and Beckstoffer Georges III.
It is also home to Napa’s most influential and historic personalities. Thomas Rutherford, responsible for the appellation's name, made serious investments here in grape growing and wine production between the years of 1850 to 1880. Gustave Niebaum purchased a large swath of land and completed his winery in 1887, calling it “Inglenook.” Today this remains the oldest bonded winery in California. Georges Latour founded Beaulieu Vineyard in 1900, making it the oldest continuous winery in the state. Latour also hired the famous enologist, André Tchelistcheff, a man credited for single-handedly defining the modern Napa winemaking style.
A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon enjoys success all over the globe, its best examples showing potential to age beautifully for decades. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in Bordeaux's Medoc where it is often blended with Merlot and smaller amounts of some combination of Cabernet Franc, Malbecand Petit Verdot. In the Napa Valley, ‘Cab’ is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious, age-worthy and sought-after “cult” wines. Somm Secret—DNA profiling in 1997 revealed that Cabernet Sauvignon was born from a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc in 17th century southwest France.