Review: 2016 Beaulieu Vineyard Maestro Collection Ranch 1 and Ranch 2
Beaulieu Vineyard — affectionately known as BV — offers myriad tiers of its wines, and its Maestro Collection is situated near the top. This collection honors Andre Tchelistcheff, arguably the most influential winemaker in Napa history.
These are limited edition bottlings that are really designed to showcase hyper-specific Napa terroirs: The two Ranches in question are adjacent vineyard plots located on the west side of Hwy 29 in central Rutherford.
2016 Beaulieu Vineyard Maestro Collection Ranch 1 Rutherford – A blend of primarily cabernet sauvignon plus merlot (16%) and petit verdot (6%). Rich with notes of blackberries, black cherry, and a grind of pepper, this is an intense wine that pulses with secondary notes of lavender, vanilla, and chocolate, though its layers of dense tannin add an unexpected richness and gravity. It’s beautiful now, but probably even better in 2023. A / $95
2016 Beaulieu Vineyard Maestro Collection Ranch 2 Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford – This bottling is from the same vintage, but contains 100% cabernet grapes. Somewhat less nuanced and a bit more astringent than the more opulent Ranch 1, the absence of the additional blending grapes is immediately felt here. Here, the full force of cabernet hits the palate as slightly tight and a bit green. It’s peppery and spicy and full of tannin — and it’s missing out on the nuance that makes Ranch 1 so engaging. B+ / $95
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