Just down the road from Hartwell Vineyards and Winery stands a stone winery that was built in 1886 by Barnard Ehlers. That stone winery became the cornerstone of 43.8 acres of vineyards that were pieced together by French entrepreneur and philanthropist Jean Leducq in 2001, which he had began acquiring in 1985. Jean Leducq’s vision was to put together a Napa Valley estate capable of producing Bordeaux style and quality wines. He realized this vision when the winery’s inaugural 2000 vintage Cabernet Sauvignon was released.
I had the pleasure of visiting Ehlers Estate in September, part of the six winery tours I did with the Daytime morning show. I had the opportunity to chat with winemaker and general manager Kevin Morrisey, and learn about the history of the estate. Kevin was very proud of the wines he creates at Ehlers as well as the philanthropic efforts the winery participates in. We discussed the wineries farming practices, organic since 2004, and then adopting biodynamic farming practices in early 2005. There’s more to tell about Ehlers, but perhaps watching this video, where I not only discuss my visit but also the Ehlers Estate 1886 Cabernet Sauvignon, is the best way to tell you about it.
Tasting Ehlers Estate 1886 Cabernet Sauvignon 2006 from Matthew Scott Horbund on Vimeo.
The crew and I spent three hours at Ehlers Estate, touring then tasting through their entire line of current releases. The tasting and tours that are available at Ehlers, by appointment, not only give you the opportunity to taste the wines, and see where they are made, but also enjoy food pairings and learn about the estate’s history and their philanthropic efforts I mentioned in the video. The team at Ehlers made the visit quite enjoyable, and we were among three sets of guests at the Estate during our visit.
The Daytime segment of our visit to Ehlers Estate aired on Monday November 23rd, and should be online shortly. When it’s available, I’ll update this post and the comments below with a link where you can view it. It’s quite a bit more polished than my discussion of the 1886 Cab Sauv, and also includes on set tastings of others Ehlers Estate wines.