Monday, February 8, 2016

02/08 TAYLOR HART, BECKMEN VINEYARDS, DAVID HUNT, HUNT CELLARS

TAYLOR HART - MARKETING MANAGER, BECKMEN VINEYARDS


After graduating from CU Boulder with a Business Marketing degree in Spring 2012, I worked for Turanga Creek, an organic and biodynamic vineyard outside of Auckland, New Zealand. While working there, I fell in love with the wine industry. Upon returning to the United States, I worked with the Santa Barbara Vintners to promote Santa Barbara as a world class wine region. I then decided to narrow my focus from 120+ wineries to just one: Beckmen Vineyards, a biodynamic estate winery in Los Olivos, CA.

ABOUT BECKMEN
When you open a bottle of BECKMEN, you are opening a piece of our history. Good wine comes from good grape juice - that comes from good grapes, that comes from great plants, that grew on the right soil - all nurtured by the vision, passion and dreams of a family.

FAMILY
The Beckmen family established their Vineyard in the Santa Ynez Valley in 1994. After years as leaders and pioneers in the electronic music business, Tom and Judy Beckmen, joined by their youngest son Steve, set out to make wines as well-crafted and distinctive as the keyboards and synthesizers that built their successful careers as founders of Roland Corp, US. Their search for a promising vineyard ended in 1994 when they discovered a 40 acre winery near the picturesque town of Los Olivos, CA. It was here, in the heart of the blossoming Santa Ynez Valley wine region, that the family laid down their roots and established Beckmen Vineyards. The Beckmens’ commitment to building a world class estate vineyard led them to purchase an unplanted 365 acre ranch in nearby Ballard Canyon. Named after the ranch to which it once belonged, Purisima Mountain Vineyard was established in 1996. Beckmen Vineyards’ wines are composed exclusively from the 150 acres of grapevine grown on these two vineyards, crafted with care in the original Los Olivos winery.

SOIL
Beckmen Vineyards consists of two separate vineyards with dramatically different soils and climates.  On the western side of Ballard Canyon lies our acclaimed, 365 acre, certified Biodynamic Purisima Mountain Vineyard. Comprised mostly of clay and clay loam, with varying amounts of gravel, the most unique aspect of this site is the limestone subsoil. Found in great Rhône regions like Côte Rôtie and Châteauneuf du Pape, the limestone soil limits vine vigor and produces smaller vines with lower yields and more intensely flavored fruit. With peaks reaching 1,250 feet, Purisima Mountain boasts 500 feet of elevation change with multiple exposures. The Winery Estate vineyard is 25 acres of rolling hills, situated in a wide valley just south of Los Olivos and two miles west of Ballard Canyon. The site is warmer than the Ballard Canyon property, due to its lower elevation and its location farther inland.

PLANTS
Each plant selection in our property brings its own unique character and quality to our wines.
Tending vines from dormancy through harvest since 1994, the Beckmen family has learned a great deal about their two distinct vineyard properties. Over time they have discovered, acre by acre, the unique soil and microclimate that best hosts each grape varietal, ensuring every block in the vineyard consistently produces the highest quality fruit possible. The Winery Estate is mostly planted to Cabernet Sauvignon with small amounts of Grenache, Mourvedre, and Syrah. The Purisima Mountain Vineyard is home to our white wine production including Sauvignon Blanc, Marsanne, Grenache Blanc, Viognier, and Chardonnay, as well as our Syrah, Grenache, Mourvedre, and Counoise.

GRAPES
20 years in pursuit of the ideal palette to achieve balanced flavor, structure, color, and complexity.
When planting our first vines, the grape varieties were chosen through recommendations from accomplished peers and regional history. Over time, we’ve let experience be our guide in determining which grapes thrive best on our two vineyards. Over the last 20 years we have been in constant pursuit of the ideal palette that will portray the balance of flavor, structure, color, and complexity for which Beckmen wines are known. We specialize in Rhône-style grapes such as Syrah, Grenache, Viognier, Grenache Blanc, Marsanne, Mourvedre, and Counoise. For an optimal diversity of expression, we cultivate seven different clones of Syrah and four selections of the heat-loving Grenache. We have found the thin topsoil on the hilltops of our Estate Vineyard to be the perfect host to four clones of Cabernet Sauvignon. Sauvignon Blanc, another Bordeaux variety, yields a startlingly flavorful fruit, stressed by the steep slopes of our Purisima Mountain Vineyard, where two clones of the Burgundy grape Chardonnay flourish on the hilltop.

HARVEST
For the last 10 years, all of our fruit has been picked under the Santa Ynez Valley night sky.
At Beckmen Vineyards, we’re working year round to carefully nurture our growing vines and monitor our aging wines, but no time is as exciting and vital as harvest. Harvest usually begins in September and runs through mid-November. During these three months, we are bustling with activity around the clock. For the last 10 years, all of our fruit has been picked under the spectacular Santa Ynez Valley night sky. Harvesting through the night ensures our grapes are picked at the lowest possible temperature, when they are at the peak of their flavor, and affords our harvest crew the comfort of working out of the hot Californian sun. All of our grapes are carefully hand-picked in small lots of less than 10 – 12 tons per day. We control the quality of fruit that is selected, only picking the ripest grapes on each vine, in every row and block. We commonly harvest the same vine two or three times throughout harvest, making passes to choose only the fruit that will make the highest quality wine. Harvest is when the artistry of wine making comes alive, when we compose the foundation of what will one day mature into exceptional wines.

WINEMAKING
The same meticulous attention to detail that we pay to our vineyards we pay to our wines.
The focus of Beckmen’s winemaking team is to draw out the distinct qualities expressed by each grape variety, and the unique character of both vineyards, as they guide the grapes from vineyard to bottle. Each wine program is given the same meticulous attention to detail that the vineyards receive year round. By making wine in small lots, we are able to capture the individuality of each particular block in both of the vineyards. We blend most of our wines from this collection of small lots, so that each wine has more depth and distinct layers of flavor. Our winemaking is done through “smart interventionism”. We make the best decisions at every step in order to create wines that balance depth of flavor, complexity, and the elegance our vineyards naturally possess.

ENJOY THE WINE
Beckmen Vineyards wine is sold in 25+ markets across the United States and can be purchased at many independent wine shops and restaurants. Sample our wines at the Beckmen Vineyards tasting room, located next to the winery outside of Los Olivos, CA. We craft wines that leave an impression. Enjoy our wine on its own to appreciate its complexity, pair with great food to enhance the experience and heighten your satisfaction. The best way to drink Beckmen wines is by joining our Wine Club. Four times a year you will receive new wines not yet released to the public, along with inspirational food pairing ideas and demonstrations, plus recommendations for how long to cellar your wines, and more.  Every vintage we strive to create beautiful, balanced wines that are a pure expression of our vineyards and our grapes.

WWW.BECKMENVINEYARDS.COM

DAVID HUNT – OWNER & WINEMAKER, HUNT CELLARS

Our Story
It started over 20 years ago as a fantasy: living on a lush beautiful vineyard, producing your own style of favorite premium varietal wines that are well received and appreciated by those who have discovered the wines and shared them amongst friends.

Now, drive along the scenic Highway 46 West, about three miles west of the 101 Fwy at Oakdale Road, you will find this dream has become reality for David Hunt, Winemaker and owner of Hunt Cellars, a winery committed to producing “Memorable Wines”. We believe that great wines leave indelible impressions when poured with wonderful meals and great friends and scintillating conversations. Hunt Cellars was founded on the philosophy of producing wines that you will look forward to simply sipping by a cozy fireplace or pairing with your favorite meals to enhance that special event or moment in time.

How It Began
When The Hunt Family decided to pursue their dream they were uncertain where they would choose to build their vineyard. The Hunts spent exhaustive days and weekends traveling to various premium wine regions from Oregon, Washington, and throughout the State of California. They finally narrowed their decision down to the Central coast to San Luis Obispo County. Paso Robles was selected because of its rich diversity in soils, superb growing climate and unique styles of wine making along with the spirit of graciousness and traditional American values.

Eventually after looking at numerous parcels of vineyard potential property, they settled on uniquely beautiful property containing over 550 acres on Highway 41 in Creston. This unique property met their criteria in topography, soil composition and unparralled beauty. Within the 550 acres there are four terrior’s with varying elevations containing soil composites that mirror the great wine regions of the world. They were convinced that they could grow wonderful exciting intense fruit here on this property.

Destiny Hunt
The Hunt Family decided to name their vineyard, “Destiny Vineyards,” in honor of their new baby girl they named Destiny who was born in 1996. Just ask Destiny who has the best wines today and she will certainly tell you.

Destiny Vineyard’s first planting consisted of: Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Syrah, Petite Syrah, Cab Franc, Viognier and Zinfandel. The Hunts decided to build a tasting room for their premium wines, which opened in October of 1999.

In 1997 they began producing their first releases of memorable wines… Experience has taught Hunts that in order to make great wines you must simply have the best fruit. At Hunt Cellars, we believe passion, hard work and never giving up until we have put together all the components and structure that will give our wine the varietal character, flavor and velvet finish that will become a trademark of our wines.

View of Destiny Vineyards
As you enter The Hunt Cellars Tasting room, the fun wine experience begins, as you are greeted with either live music or our white grand player piano, which can play any song. Stroll up to our Cabernet Bar, where our warm and friendly staff are eager to lead you through a light hearted and fun sampling of our wines. You may also choose to sip your wines on our spacious 1200 foot veranda, smoke your favorite cigar under our pavilion or simply stroll through our lush inviting landscaped lawns. We want you and your guest to simply have a wonderful time at Hunt Cellars and bring your friends and family back on your next visit to the Paso Robles Wine Country.

How Hunt Cellars Wines Differ from Others
There are many different wineries in the Paso Robles area; few compare to the quality of Hunt Cellars. Hunt uses only the best and rarest mountain grown fruit to produce the best harvest of grapes. Their vineyard’s location has been specifically chosen for its composition and diversity – every step of the production process is designed so Hunt Cellars produces the highest caliber of wine for you to enjoy.

HUNTCELLARS.COM

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