For Xtant, we are fortunate to have access to some of Napa Valley’s most distinguished vineyard sites, allowing us to create a Bordeaux-style wine noted for its classic blend of power, elegance and finesse.
Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot from Napa Valley’s historic Lewelling Vineyards have formed the foundation of Xtant since its inaugural release in 2001. We feel very fortunate to join an exclusive group of wineries – including Caymus and Harlan – who source fruit from this legendary Napa Valley site. Lewelling Vineyards was first planted in 1864 by pioneering vintner and horticulturalist John Lewelling, and is run today by his great grandchildren Doug, Dave and Alan Wight – making it one of Napa’s oldest continuously-owned family vineyards. Located in western Napa Valley, just outside the town of St. Helena, the 28-acre Lewelling Vineyards is planted to a coveted section of benchland at the eastern base of the Mayacamas Mountains. Here, the vines enjoy an ideal climate marked by long, warm days, shielded from extreme heat by the nearby mountains. Lewelling is further distinguished by its deep, gravelly soils; part of a unique alluvial fan that juts out from the Mayacamas into select vineyard sites. This ideal terroir, combined with extraordinary stewardship by the Lewelling family has established Lewelling as one of Napa’s most prized Cabernet Sauvignon sites, known for producing wines of exceptional richness and complexity. We source both Cabernet Sauvignonand Merlot from dedicated rows at Lewelling Vineyards.
After choosing to make Lewelling Vineyards the foundation for our Xtant red wine, we worked with Lewelling owner/grower Doug Wight to secure other similarly expressive sites to build both vineyard and varietal complexity into our wine. The first of those two sites is Kletter Vineyard, also in St. Helena. Like Lewelling Vineyards, Kletter enjoys exceptional Cabernet Sauvignon terroir and is farmed by Doug Wight. This premier vineyard is located next door to Duckhorn, tucked between Glass Mountain to the east and the Napa River and its riparian corridor to the west. The moderating influences of both the mountain and the river form an ideal season-lengthening mesoclimate, cloaking the vines in long, warm – but never hot – days. The ground here is riddled with the obsidian that Glass Mountain is named for, making for well-drained soils that encourage deep root penetration and increased flavor complexity. Given its consummate mix of climate and soils, Kletter is typically one of the latest ripening Cabernet Sauvignon vineyards in Napa Valley, providing us with deeply concentrated and beautifully structured fruit for Xtant. We source Cabernet Sauvignon from dedicated rows at Kletter Vineyard.
When it came time to source the Malbec for Xtant, winemaker Jeff Gaffner together with Doug Wight of Lewelling Vineyards set their sights high. Our third vineyard, UC Davis’ Oakville Station, is per their website “the most significant vineyard in the state, if not the world.” Upon hearing that UC Davis wanted to establish a research center in Napa, local vintners rallied to help the university secure one of the valley’s most prized pieces of land, located in the heart of its famed Oakville AVA. For more than 50 years, the department has conducted critical viticulture research at the 40-acre site, including trials of clones, rootstocks, vine spacing, pruning levels, and irrigation. The vineyard is planted to a variety of grapes including a small block of Malbec, which we were able to access by virtue of Doug’s longstanding role as consulting viticulturist at Oakville Station. In addition to its unparalleled prove- nance, our Oakville Station Malbec benefits from the highest level of research and farming, resulting in exceptionally pure expression of varietal character and site signature.
We source Malbec from dedicated rows at Oakville Station.