“Cabernets need a touch of that Rutherford dust.” (Andre Tchelistcheff, legendary winemaker of Beaulieu Vineyards).
The celebrated vignerons of this appellation deeply respect and pay homage to the unique terroir here, which they refer to as "the "dust". Rutherford’s soils are primarily gravel, sand and loam, and are dominated by volcanic deposits and Franciscan marine sediment. They provide excellent water drainage and ideal conditions for Cabernet Sauvignon. However, to these vignerons the "dust" means much more than dirt. It is the combination of earth, special climate, meticulous fruit-focused winemaking and unrelenting patience that produces world-class wines. The historic wineries of Inglenook and Beaulieu, as well as dozens of new houses, have proven that this six-square-mile plot of vines, halfway up the Napa Valley, rivals the best appellations of the Old World.
In the southern Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina and Georgia vineyards are small and few, yet the establishment of the Upper Hiwassee Highlands could bring much more.
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