Tuck Beckstoffer Mad Hatter 2016
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Plenty of ripe blueberry and plum aromas here with a swathe of violet-like florals, too. The palate is succulent and fleshy with a long array of plush, supple tannins that carry ample depth and rich, fresh fruit to the finish. A blend of 48 per cent cabernet sauvignon, 40 per cent merlot, and 12 per cent petite sirah.
The deep garnet-purple colored 2016 Red Blend Mad Hatter is composed of 48% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot and 12% old-vine Petite Sirah. It sings of crushed red and black cherries, warm cassis and blueberry compote with suggestions of forest floor, camphor and Indian spices. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is well-poised with chewy, approachable tannins and a spicy kick to the finish.
It began on back country roads and among the vines. The Beckstoffer family arrived in the Napa Valley in 1975 and the young son of a future pioneer spent his days in the vineyards throughout every growing season, cultivating deep roots.
Brought up to respect the land and its fruit, Tuck naturally sought out the practice of viticulture, learning from the masters around him. Much like his father before him, he is a farmer first. It was only after he mastered the art of first craft that he turned his attention to a second craft—winemaking. Over three decades after he first set foot in the valley, Tuck bottled his first wine. For him, it was not a whim or passion project, but the culmination of a life lived on the land, among the vines.
Today, Tuck is one of the few Napa stewards who is both a grower and a winemaker. It is this pedigree that makes his approach different: the process begins with the land itself and culminates with a reverence for the winemaking traditions of the past—sharing successes and failures among fellow craftsmen and appreciating the fruits of their labor over a beautiful bottle of wine.
Undoubtedly proving its merit over and over, Napa Valley is a now a leading force in the world of prestigious red wine regions. Though Cabernet Sauvignon dominates Napa Valley, other red varieties certainly thrive here. Important but often overlooked include Merlot and other Bordeaux varieties well-regarded on their own as well as for their blending capacities. Very old vine Zinfandel represents an important historical stronghold for the region and Pinot noir is produced in the cooler southern parts, close to the San Pablo Bay.
Perfectly situated running north to south, the valley acts as a corridor, pulling cool, moist air up from the San Pablo Bay in the evenings during the hot days of the growing season, which leads to even and slow grape ripening. Furthermore the valley claims over 100 soil variations including layers of volcanic, gravel, sand and silt—a combination excellent for world-class red wine production.