Cuvaison is a name many are familiar with when it comes to Napa Valley wines. It is a renowned estate and an idyllic property in Carneros. Cuvaison Winery stands out as one of the more unique wineries in Napa, as they are one of the few wineries that remain independent and family-owned. Their estate wines exemplify the distinctiveness of their cool-climate Los Carneros estate vineyards and the small-lot wines express the character and complexity of their terroir.
The Cuvaison Story
Cuvaison has helped define the Napa landscape since 1969. Making cool-climate wines in the Carneros region has been their hallmark. Originally founded by Thomas Parkhill and Thomas Cottrell, Cuvaison’s inaugural vintage of Napa Valley Chardonnay was crafted in 1969. Ten years later, the Schmidheiny family of Switzerland purchased the winery. The Cuvaison vineyards span 200 planted acres and are carved into 40 distinctive blocks of Chardonnay and more than 20 blocks of Pinot Noir. The various blocks are not only visually stunning but also deliver wines with lovely nuances and layered complexity.
Winemaker Steve Rogstad
Since 2002, Cuvaison wines have been crafted by their gifted winemaker, Steve Rogstad. Having spent most of his winemaking career in Carneros, at La Crema, Saintsbury and Clos Pegase, he has mastered the land, the terroir and the art of making cool-climate wines. Steve is an artisan winemaker who makes very small lot wines, to preserve the unique character of each clone of rootstock. Steve says, “Great wines don’t come from a single vintage—they are the culmination of years of knowledge and experience.”
Cuvaison Wines That Are Ideal For The Summer Season
Cuvaison Sauvignon Blanc Napa Valley, Los Carneros 2020
This is a fantastic summer wine with its bright aromatics and refreshing palate. This estate Sauvignon Blanc has notes of lemon, lychee, grapefruit and tangerine on the nose. Textured and focused on the palate, the acidity is bright and the minerality distinct. On the palate, there are notes of peach, lemongrass, stonefruit and subtle herbaceousness. This Sauvignon Blanc is 100% fermented in stainless steel to allow for the fruit and minerality to shine through. Nice vibrancy, focused acidity and a balanced finish make this the perfect wine to enjoy on a warm summer day.
Cuvaison Chardonnay Napa Valley, Los Carneros 2018
This is a stunning estate Chardonnay that is complex, elegant and creamy. The wine is well structured with nice minerality. Notes of apricot, pears, hazelnut, vanilla and baking spice coat the palate. It is a well-balanced wine with a long lingering finish. The Cuvaison Chardonnay is a very food-friendly Chardonnay that will be a great pairing with grilled chicken, seafood and creamy pasta dishes.
Cuvaison Small Lot Pinot Noir Rosé Napa Valley, Los Carneros 2020
The small lot rosé is very precise with racy acidity and noticeable minerality. Pretty in pink, this Pinot Noir rosé is pressed whole cluster to capture its delicate fragrance and silky finish. The wine is perfumed with scents of strawberry, raspberry and wildflowers. On the palate summer strawberries and Meyer lemon refresh the palate. The harmony between the fruit, acidity and minerality make this wine enjoyable till the last sip.
Cuvaison Pinot Noir Napa Valley, Los Carneros 2018
A classic Carneros Pinot Noir, this estate wine is elegant and restrained. On the nose, there are beautiful aromatics of rose petals, strawberries and blueberries. There are delicate and subtle layers of dark cherries, cocoa, plum and tea on the palate. The well-integrated and silky tannins deliver a wine that is complex, elegant, and fresh..