Beauregard Vineyards2003 Cabernet Sauvignon
(Ben Lomond Mountain)
Ryan Beauregard is carrying on the family tradition of growing wine grapes and making great wine from this special piece of land high up in the Bonny Doon area of the Santa Cruz Mountains. His great grandfather, Amos, purchased 250 acres of land here in 1946 and transformed the existing apple orchards into a vineyard that produced world-class wine grapes that went primarily to Napa. His son Emmett took over in the 1970s and made grape-growing a recreational pursuit to complement his immensely successful retail grocery store, Shopper’s Corner, which remains to this day a Santa Cruz icon. It has, in fact, the largest and best selection of local wines in the area.
Ryan’s father, Jim, is now the primary viticulturist, and he and his son have painstakingly replanted the family vineyard in what is known as the Ben Lomond AVA, a 38,400 acre appellation which Jim was responsible for establishing in 1988. Beauregard Vineyards winery was founded in 1999 to showcase the fruit from this unique growing region of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Among the fruit planted here is the Emmet Beauregard clone of Cabernet Sauvignon.
Everything about this wine is elegant and in balance: it has pleasing aromas of fresh-cured tobacco, smoked meat, fine saddle leather, nutmeg and curry pounding your olfactory receptors. Then you’ll find intriguing pepper and herbs and then you’re just about ready for that flood of immense Bing cherry and strawberry jam that washes over your palate. There’s a very pleasing core of minerality that is so Santa Cruz Mountains with almost a plum tart richness that is never in any way sweet: just vibrant, ripe mountain fruit. It’s as delightful in the mouth as it is on the nose, and nothing is out of touch here. The tannins are silky smooth, the acid is just right and the texture is pretty darned near velvety as well. Everything about this wine says it was raised with TLC from vineyard to bottle. This is one of the very few Cabs I’ve ever had that I enjoyed as much by itself as with food. It really is a fine-boned, well-bred wine. If you prefer bold, brawny, tannin-rich Cabs, this won’t suit you. But if you prefer a Cab you can enjoy with a filet mignon, this one’s got your name on it.
(Alc: 13.9%, Retail: $45)
Reviewed April 11, 2007 by Laura Ness.
Other Awards & Accolades
Double Gold Medal - San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition
Other reviewed wines from Beauregard Vineyards
2004 Pinot Noir, Trout Gulch
(Santa Cruz Mountains)Laura Ness 5/15/2007
2004 Zinfandel, Zayante Vineyard
(Santa Cruz Mountains)Laura Ness 4/23/2007
A wine writer and wine judge for major publications and competitions around the country, Laura Ness likens wine to the experience of music. She is always looking for that ubiquitous marriage of rhythm, melody, and flawless execution. What is good music? You know it when you get lost in it. What is good wine? It is music in your mouth.