Sequoia Grove Cabernet Sauvignon Napa
Baileyana Winery was founded over 20 years ago by Catharine Niven.
A bold woman with a can-do attitude, Catharine had a generous manner and a magnetic personality. Born and raised on a world-class thoroughbred horse farmoutside Lexington Kentucky, she developed a love for horses early on. That interest, coupled with a tremendous sense of perseverance, let her to eventually own a race horse and have her name shown in the winner’s circle at the famous Santa Anita racetrack in Southern California. Equally passionate in other areas including antique collecting, gardening, cooking, entertaining and fundraising, she always sought out the best.
Catharine’s husband Jack introduced her to the wine industry in the early 1970’s via their move to the Edna Valley on California’s Central Coast. Pioneering the planting of the first wine grapes in this area, they founded Paragon Vineyards. Jack focused on the large-scale business while Catharine busied herself with her own smaller project; a 3 ½ acre parcel in their front yard. She went at it with passionate detail, just as with any of her other fascinations. Her research drew her to Burgundy, the world’s ultimate wine producing region. She quickly learned that California’s widely-spaced plantings and trellising system known as “California Sprawl” were not necessarily the best vineyard practices. Burgundian methods with tighter spacing and a more vertical approach to managing the canopy made sense to her. Despite advice from the “California experts,” Catharine stuck to her guns, planed her vineyard the way she saw fit, and eventually proved she was right.
This wonderful union of winemaking and viticulture brings a Chardonnay of tremendous concentration. Bright flavors of pear, pineapple, and citrus marry with a nuance of minerality.
Our first unfiltered effort has given us a wine that is intense and full with classic cool climate characteristics."
Winemaker, Christian Roguenant
Chardonnay from our Firepeak Vineyard is unique in many ways. First, by virtue of its proximity to the ocean, we are afforded one of the longest growing seasons on the state, allowing for full development of intense varietal character. Secondly, our Firepeak Vineyard is planted at the foot of Islay Mountain, the last in a chain of extinct volcanoes known as the Seven Sisters, providing unusual soils of volcanic mass and structure. These factors, along with winemaker Christian Roguenant’s intrinsic talent of blending small lots of Chardonnay into one exemplary wine each vintage, is what Grand Firepeak Cuvee, or "GFC", is all about.