Every individual vineyard has its own, unique terroir, its own unique footprint of soils, and its own unique meso-climate. A vineyard’s terroir ultimately defines a particular set of aromas and flavors that the grapes provide to a finished wine. The idea of preserving or celebrating a particularly delightful terroir seems obvious enough when crafting or enjoying a single vineyard bottling, like our 2019 “Sugarloaf Vineyard” Cabernet Franc. The balance created between the relative coolness of the southern part of the Napa Valley and the energy captured by the southwestern-facing hillside of rock-strewn soils produces a fully ripened Cabernet Franc with immense depth of flavor and rounded, lengthy tannins.
But what role does terroir play in a wine crafted from multiple vineyard sites and multiple grape varietals? Even when blending, terroir remains of primary importance. It is the distinctive and unique terroir of each vineyard that provides us with a veritable cave full of distinctive and unique flavor profiles that we can then blend into distinctive and uniquely–compelling and delicious wines. Think of these various blocks and vineyards and varietals as an expansive palette of widely and subtly varying colors to be combined in the blending room into a new and beautiful expression.
During this current harvest season, we are bringing in grapes from 37 vineyards. In many of these vineyards, we harvest from multiple blocks, or smaller areas, within the vineyard, meaning that we will be vinifying grapes from over 67 individual harvest picks! Consider two of our popular blended red wines, Blend 26 and Blend 27. We will have 25 different harvest lots that could potentially be used to craft each of these wines, ensuring that these will continue to possess the subtlety, depth, and layers of flavors that you expect from every bottle of B Cellars wine.
Keeping tally of all of these harvest lots, watching them mature, and calling in the pick at the perfect height of ripeness is just one of the many reasons that Harvest is our favorite time of the year.