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Parker 100 points

Another perfect wine is Bevan’s equal part blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc, the 2012 Proprietary Red Sugarloaf Mountain. Notes of unsmoked cigar tobacco, forest floor, pen ink mulberries, blackberries and spring flowers soar from this inky/purple-colored 2012. The wine possesses great intensity, remarkable unctuosity and thickness, and perfect integration of acidity, alcohol, tannin and wood. Aged in equal parts new Gamba and Darnajou barrels, there are 225 cases of this fabulous wine. Drink now-2032.

As I wrote last year, Russell Bevan and his partner, Victoria de Cresenzo, are turning out truly mind-blowing, big, rich, majestic wines. Bevan Cellars has hit the bull’s eye with a bevy of incredible efforts that showcases fabulous vineyard sources. Many of these have not been exploited by others. A warning though – these are super-rich, dense, powerful, massive wines. While the tannins are elevated, they are silky and well-integrated, and the wines are neither heavy nor overbearing. Nor is Bevan afraid of alcohol, but he never goes over-the-top.
The bottled 2012s have all seen about 75% new Taransaud French oak barrels and the rest tend to be either Gamba or Darnajou, the latter probably the most difficult high-quality barrel to obtain because of the small production.

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History

Back in 1995, when Victoria and I started dating in Des Moines, our favorite game was “Guess the Wine.” We would take turns bringing a blind wine and make the other person guess the varietal and region. When I look back on those dates, there is little mystery about how we arrived where we are today.

 

Soon after that, we moved to Minneapolis and fell in with a group of wine lovers whose passion and knowledge fanned our flame. We started taking regular trips to wine country in California, where we met many of the finest winemakers. We were so inspired by them that to this day we follow many of their principles. We learned first-hand about Philip Togni’s attention to every minute detail…. Saw how Bob Foley would only pick fruit if his palate — not some lab test — told him it was time… Heard Greg La Follette telling us how careful you have to be when making decisions in the winery because even the smallest decision has an impact on the final wine. Our conversations still reverberate with me whether I am at a vineyard or in the winery.

 

Soon enough we were searching for property in our native California. Victoria spent three years trying to find the right site. Finally, she found her dream home on eight acres of land in Bennett Valley, just a few miles from where I grew up. It only took one visit by Kal Showket to plant the seed that led to our estate vineyard. Little did we know that Kal would be key to many of the major changes in our lives from that point on. Later that year, the Showket’s gave us a ton of Cabernet Sauvignon from their best block to see if we would enjoy winemaking.

When that ton of fruit arrived at the winery, we had a dozen friends help us sort the grapes. For fifteen hours we worked, examining each grape by hand and sorting them into three groups: plump and juicy, dimpled, and very ripe. We fermented each batch separately. Tasting the lots two days later, the differences were staggering. The hook was set.

–Russell Bevan and Victoria De Crescenzo

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Winemaking

Our approach to winemaking has remained constant since our first vintage. We inspect every grape after it has been removed from the stem. We discard every one that doesn’t meet our standards; typically sacrificing six to eight percent of our fruit during this process. From that stage on, every wine is crafted to maximize balance and textures. Each of our vineyards imparts their fruit with such pure flavors that we strive to bring all of the components into harmony.

All of our wines are aged in new French barrels, including Remond, Francois Freres and Gamba for our Syrahs and Darnajou and Taransaud for Cabernet Sauvignon. We evaluate each barrel of wine biweekly, allowing the wines to dictate to us how they are treated in terms of racking, barrel stirring, sulfur additions and bottling.

While we are not open to the public, we enjoy hosting private tastings at our winemaking facility.

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Highlights

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Wine Moments

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 Zhenzhen Fu, Pro (China)  tasted  1 wines  from  Bevan Cellars . In a tasting of  12 wines 

Tasted some of the greates Napa Valley wines. Surprisingly the best one for me was Bevan Cellars Sugarloaf Mountain 2012 / Thick, opaque, ruby colour with enormous viscosity. Huge nose! Powerful, spicy and surprisingly vegetal with nutmeg and Asian spicy aromas. The full-bodied palate surprises again with moderately high acidity. Big chewy tannins are forming solid backbone to intense dark fruitiness. Spices, licorice, nutmeg and cacao with bitter chocolate flavours are all well pronounced in mineral finish. Big wine with no flabbiness thanks to delightful minerality. Drinking well now but will keep still for decades. 97 points

18d 12h ago

 Wallace Shawn / Wine Investing Consult, Wine Dealer (Luxembourg)  tasted  1 wines  from  Bevan Cellars . In a tasting of  24 wines 

“Some 2012 Napa cabs - Bryant Family and Colgin were stars of the night:
Bryant Family 2012, Bottle in a excellent condition and has by the neck level. Colour is ruby red, bright and full. On the nose it is intense, fresh, seductive and rich. The taste is focused, refined, with silky tannins. Full-bodied, with balanced good texture and concentrated structure. On the palate it is layered and has dried-fruit, raspberry, truffles, tropical fruits, blackcurrant, spice, smoky and cigar-box flavours. The finish is long, extensive, flavorful and pure. This wine is intelligent, sophisticated and fine. Perfectly stored bottles are still very worthy and will last well for another 10-15 years and decant at least 2h before tasting. 95 points”

1y 9m ago

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