VOLUME 10, ISSUE 29
April 22, 2016
Bouchaine is the oldest continually operated winery in Carneros. It was first planted to vines and orchards by the Carneros legend, Boon Fly, as part of a larger tract in the 1850s. A couple of owners followed, including Italian immigrant Johnny Garetto and the Beringer Brothers. In 1981 the winery was acquired by Burgundian enthusiasts Gerret and Tatiana Copeland and a group of nine other partners. When they came upon the property, the vines had been pulled out and a derelict shed stood on the property. The christened the property Chateau Bouchaine after the maiden name of the general partner. A decade later, the investors lost interest in the project and the Copelands acquired the entire property.
The Copelands replanted vineyards and bought more land, including the Garetto hills. A massive renovation of Bouchaine was undertaken in 1995 and in 2002 Michael Richmond was hired as winemaker and general manager.
Michael Richmond is a veteran of over 30 years in the winemaking business. He co-founded Acacia Winery in Carneros and later managed Carmenet Winery for Chalone. He is one of the co-founders of the Steamboat Pinot Noir Conference in Oregon.
Andrew Brooks, the son of Larry Brooks, the first winemaker Richmond hired in 1979 when he founded Acacia Winery, joined Bouchaine as assistant winemaker in 2007 and left Bouchaine when Richmond retired.
In 2015, Richmond retired after 13 vintages at Bouchaine, and Chris Kajani was hired as the winemaker and general manager. She was previously at Saintsbury for eight years. Her first dirt-to-bottle vintage was 2015. Paul Hobbs was hired as consulting winemaker and Erik Goodmanson as assistant winemaker.
The Copelands have a focus on the arts and sponsor the Bouchaine young Artists Series, the only musical event at Festival del Sole that is free to the public. They also focus on open land preservation and animal rescue.
Bouchaine Vineyards wines are available on the website. There is also decent retail distribution. The winery is open to visitors daily from 10:30-4:00. The address is 1075 Buchli Station Rd, Napa. The phone is 800-654-WINE.
Articles About Bouchaine Vineyards
12th Annual World of Pinot Noir (9.4 3/21/2012)
Affairs of the Vine Pinot Summit Results (8.35 4/11/2011)
Bouchaine Vineyards: A Winery Steeped in Carneros History (9.50 11/21/2014)
Michael Richmond: Bouchaine (6.62 7/19/2008)
More Sips of Carneros Pinot Noir (7.12 2/12/2009)
More Sips of Pinot (7.9 1/1/2009)
On the Pinot Trail: Tasting at Bouchaine Vineyards (9.50 11/21/2014)
Pinot Briefs (10.6 3/15/2015)
2013 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir
14.2% alc., pH 3.60, TA 0.50, 6,158 cases. Unreleased. Estate plus a handful of lots from Gee Vineyard and Mahoney Vineyards. 33% new oak. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Reticent aromas of darker fruits. Discreetly concentrated flavors of black cherry, boysenberry and pomegranate. Much better over time in the glass. Very young with slightly imposing tannins. Impressive mid palate attack and finish. A gorgeous wine with unlimited potential. Outstanding. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2012 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir
13.9% alc., pH 3.56, TA 0.55, 9,337 cases. Unreleased. 33% new oak. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Shy fruit aromas with toasty oak and a bit of reduction which blows off over time in the glass. Mid weight flavors of purple berries including boysenberry. Very young and sense that the fruit is trying to come out. Slightly savory, with a herbal note. The tannins are nicely balanced and there is some finishing power. A well-crafted wine that needs more time in bottle. Very good +. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2012 Bouchaine Carneros Estate Vineyard Pinot Meunier
13.5% alc., pH 3.53, TA 0.59, 879 cases, $40. Released May 2014. Aged in 40% new French oak barrels. · An array of purple and black fruits are featured on the nose which holds up nicely over time in the glass. Moderately rich and smoothly textured on the palate, this fruity wine is embellished with vivid deep purple and black berry, and black plum fruits robed in modest tannins. The fruit holds on to the generous finish. Very good +. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2012 Bouchaine Estate Vineyard Mariafeld Carneros Pinot Noir
14.5% alc., pH 3.53, TA 0.63, 266 cases, $40. Released May 2014. Aged 11 months in 33% new French oak. · Pleasant aromas of dark red cherry and berry with a touch of spice and floral bouquet. Smooth on the palate with a somewhat shallow attack. Juicy with a core of dark red fruits backed by muscular tannins. Lacks a bit of charm. Good. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2012 Bouchaine Rockin’ H Vineyard Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir
13.8% alc., ph 3.47, TA 0.58, 272 cases, $40. Released March 2014. 55% 777 and 45% 667. Aged 11 months in 40% new French oak. · Darkest in color. The nose features dark fruits with a hint of oak and eucalyptus. Intense and full-bodied array of dark berries saturating the mid palate and persisting on the softly textured and generous finish. Should benefit from more time in bottle. Very good. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2012 Bouchaine Estate Vineyard Terraces Carneros Pinot Noir
13.8% alc., pH 3.60, TA 0.55, 599 cases, $60. Released November 2014. Dijon clones 667 and 777. Aged 11 months in 40% new French oak. · Shy aromas of black fruits and black tea leaves. Earthy with middleweight flavors of blueberry, pomegranate and blackberry. A distinct wine that builds in intensity over time in the glass. The finish is intense and long. Very good +. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2012 Bouchaine Gee Vineyard Carneros Pinot Noir
13.7% alc., pH 3.45, TA 0.60, 272 cases, $60. Released September 2014. Aged 11 months in 40% new French oak. · Savory aromas of dark cherries and berries. Smooth and polished on the palate with a discreetly concentrated array of dark red fruits. Nicely balanced and forward drinking, with some finishing intensity. Very good + Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2011 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir
13.6% alc., pH 3.58, TA 0.61, 3,655 cases. Unreleased. 33% new oak. · Moderate reddish purple hue in the glass. Very pretty nose featuring hi-tone cherry syrup and very modest oak input. Mid weight flavors of dark cherries and red currants with an earthy undertone. Nicely balanced tannins and a dry, charming finish. Very good. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2010 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir
13.8% alc., pH 3.50, TA 0.60, 9, 798 cases, $35. Current release. Small amount of Gee Vineyard fruit and Shop fruit from Walsh Vineyards Management. 33% new oak. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Lovely nose of red cherry, teaberry, and savory oak. Plenty to like in this savory wine with compliments of black cherry, earth, mushroom and oak. Very good + Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2009 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir
13.8% alc., pH 3.59, TA 0.59, 11,902 cases. Aged in 33% new French, American and Hungarian oak barrels. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Nicely perfumed with bright cherry, spice, black tea, savory and smoky oak. Full-flavored and well-structured with plenty of tasty black raspberry fruit. Finishes with remarkable intensity and appeal. Very good + to Outstanding. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2008 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir
14.1% alc., pH 3.48, TA 0.64, 8, 704 cases. Dijon, Pommard and Swan clones. Barrel aged in 33% new French, Hungarian and American oak. · Moderate reddish purple color in the glass. Enticing aromas of cherry, spice, conifer, mocha and smoky oak. Modest in weight but flavorful, with tastes of black cherry, blueberry, tar and tea. Still alive, fresh and fruity with some finishing interest. Very good. Reviewed November 19, 2014 ARTICLE »
2006 Bouchaine Carneros Pinot Noir
14.1% alc., $30. A combination of fruit from estate and neighboring vineyards. Dijon, Pommard and Swan clones. Gold Medal San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition 2008. · Ripe flavors of dark cherries, blackberry jam and a little dark chocolate. There is a moderately lush entry attack of dark stone fruit, berries and root beer flavors with an accompanying velvety mouth feel, supple tannins and lively acidity on the dry finish. A reliable drinker from a consistent producer. Reviewed January 1, 2009 ARTICLE »
2006 Bouchaine Vineyards Carneros Estate Pinot Noir
14.5% alc., 2,500 cases, $30. · Closed initially, then opening nicely in the glass with swirling. A rich and sturdy wine with a tasty core of dark red cherries and berries with currants, tobacco and smoky oak that linger on a persistent and noticeably tannic finish. This wine will pair well now with hardy meats. Still fine the next day from an opened and re-corked bottle indicating this wine will age for 5 to 7 more years without difficulty. Reviewed February 12, 2009 ARTICLE »
2005 Bouchaine Napa Carneros Pinot Noir
13.5% alc., $20 (website retail for the 2006 vintage is $30). Dijon, Pommard clones and Swan selection. · Deep ruby color. Flat out terrific nose featuring black cherries, shrooms, dark chocolate, and smoke. A beautiful drink of Pinot. Darkly fruited and substantial, yet smooth, light and elegant. Very easy to like. I call this a “Just Right” wine since everything about it is harmonious. There isn’t another Pinot Noir in this issue that can match the quality here at such a low price. For value seeking Pinot lovers who want something they can count on. Reviewed July 19, 2008 ARTICLE »
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