Caymus Vineyards' roots trace back to the Wagner family, who left San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake to farm in Rutherford, Napa Valley. By 1915 they were producing bulk wines and during the 1940s they were known for their excellent grapes and home made wines. The commercial winery was founded in 1972 when the family decided to produce wine as a business. By the late 1980s Caymus wines were winning prestigious awards. Today the winery is run by Chuck Wagner, who was born and raised on the estate, and the wines are considered some of the valley’s finest. The estate includes more than 60 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon. Caymus produces about 70,000 cases a year.
Rutherford AVA is just north of the Oakville AVA in the heart of Napa Valley, and it is equally distinguished. It is home to Beaulieu Vineyard and inglenook, arguably Napa Valley’s most historically influential wineries. Inglenook started making in wine in the late 19th century, and Beaulieu Vineyards was producing by the first years of the 20th century. BV founder Georges de Latour is particularly esteemed for having recruited Andre Tchelistcheff, a renowned research oenologist, to move from France to Napa Valley in 1938 and run BV’s winemaking. The legendary Tchelistcheff brought European winemaking techniques to Napa Valley and vastly improved wine quality. Other Rutherford winemakers followed his lead. Today there are 5,000 vineyard acres in Rutherford and many acclaimed producers. The famous Silverado Trail with its exclusive, limited production wineries, runs partly through Rutherford AVA. Rutherford Cabernet Sauvignons are characterized by supple tannins, richness, notes of cherry and plum, depth and the ability to age for several decades. Besides Cabernet Sauvignon the AVA also grows Chardonnay, Merlot, Sauvignon Blanc and Zinfandel. It received its AVA designation in 1994.
One of the most widely grown grape varieties, it can be found in nearly every wine growing region. A cross between Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc. It’s a hardy vine that produces a full-bodied wine with high tannins and great aging potential.