A world-famous vineyard, Beaulieu Vineyard has an iconic history that stands the test of time. By Runi Indrani
Beaulieu Vineyard – more familiarly known as the brand Beaulieu Vineyard – was first established in 1900 in California by husband and wife Georges and Fernande de Latour. The name Latour needs no further introduction for wine aficionados, for it’s a respected legacy that has set the benchmark for classic Napa Valley wines for more than 100 years.
Respected winemaker André Tchelistcheff joined Beaulieu Vineyard in 1938 when he took a sip of the de Latour family’s private wine, aptly named Private Reserve. The 1936 vintage was so impressive that he insisted it was bottled and sold as a flagship wine. The vineyard saw the first release of the Private Reserve vintage in 1940, named after the founder, Georges de Latour Private Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon. The rest is history.
Tapestry of Flavours and Depth
That being said, Beaulieu Vineyard is so much more than the Latour Private Reserve. In 1989, the vineyard introduced the Tapestry Reserve. The name portrays the multiple varietals with their different qualities, resulting in a single sophisticated piece – just like a delicately woven tapestry.
The 2018 Tapestry requires five Bordeaux-heritage grape varieties that are grown in the Napa Valley, exuding complex multi-layered flavours. The Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot were aged in new French oak barrels, offering notes of mocha and molasses, velvety tannins, heightened aroma and lengthened finish.
The year 2018 saw a near picture-perfect growing season, with good winter rains, mild spring weather and steady temperature throughout the year. Add to that the right optical sorting, cold-soaking, gentle pump-overs and in-barrel malolactic fermentation, the 2018 Tapestry was born to turn heads and mesmerise palates.
Time for Trevor
These days, Beaulieu Vineyard is helmed by Chief Winemaker Trevor Durling. Growing up in the heart of Northern California’s wine country, wine had always been a staple at Durling’s family dinner table. However, his endeavours in winemaking came later, after he joined an introduction to winemaking class and realised that winemaking combines his love of agriculture, science and cuisine.
Durling’s winemaking journey has been illustrious, with leading vineyards and coveted accolades to his name. In June 2017, he was appointed Chief Winemaker at Beaulieu Vineyard, making him the fifth chief winemaker in the winery’s 122-year history.
“While Beaulieu’s legacy honours the marriage between innovative technology and gentle traditional winemaking methods, we are entering a new chapter. It’s an exciting and pivotal time. We have invested significantly in recent years to improve the quality of our visitor centre, winery and the reserve cellar, bringing in state-of-the-art tools to help craft wines of the highest calibre,” Durling explained. “We are striving every day to raise the bar for ourselves as winemakers.”
Beaulieu Vineyard Tapestry 2018
78% Cabernet Sauvignon, 8% Merlot, 8% Petit Verdot, 5% Malbec, 1% Cabernet Franc
Aged 22 months in French oak
(60% new barrels)
2021 to 2036
Cabernet Sauvignon gives a generous core of juicy blackcurrant, dark cherry and cassis. The Merlot provides dark cherry notes and a plush, rich texture. Malbec contributes wild raspberry notes, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot complete the blend with spice and delicate floral notes.