Buy Scarecrow Wine
In 1945 John Daniel Jr., owner of Inglenook, convinced his neighbor J.J. Cohn to plant 80 acres of Cabernet on his Rutherford property. Cohn had purchased the land a few years prior as a summer retreat for his wife and family and had never considered grapegrowing or winemaking. John Daniel Jr. however, recognized the enormous potential of the deep loam soils and promised to buy all the fruit. The rest is history and J.J. Cohn Estate fruit has become highly sought after by reknown estates such as Opus One, Niebaum-Coppola, Duckhorn, Insignia and Etude. In addition to remarkable soils this is partly because of Cohn's desire to buck trends. In the 1960's when most Napa vineyard owners were re-grafted from St George rootstock to the supposedly superior AXR1 Cohn did not. It was eventually discovered that AXR1 was not nearly as resistant to phylloxera but by then all the St George rootstock vines has been destroyed and only the original 1945 J.J. Cohn vines survived. Today, the "Old Men" as they are affectionately called continue to produce uncommonly rich fruit - the hallmark of Scarecrow wine.
buy scarecrow wine
Today it is J.J. Cohn's grandson Bret Lopez and his wife Mimi DeBlasio who champion the history of this fabled estate which Robert Parker has dubbed the equivalent of a French Grand Cru. After achieving personal success in creative and artistics fields they have settled on the Rutherford estate and assembled a passionate team to craft this very special wine that is Scarecrow. Vineyard manager Michael Wolf and winemaker Celia Welch have been with the project since it's inaugural release in 2003.
Napa Valley is home to some of America's finest wines. The best of them even carry the designation as among the world's best. Scarecrow is located in the abolished Napa top, and there are several reasons for that. Reasons like high scores, limited quantities, and a strong brand.
In 1939, John Daniel Jr. took the reins at Inglenook in Napa Valley, determined to produce world-class wines. John Daniel Jr. had a neighbor named J.J. Cohn, whom he in 1945 persuaded to plant 80 hectares of Cabernet vineyards on the 180-hectare parcel Cohn had acquired a few years earlier. The estate actually served as a vacation home for Cohn's family, and he had absolutely no intention of becoming a winemaker...
Inglenook used J.J. Cohn's grapes in his terrific post-war Cabernet Sauvignons, and more recently, the grapes have been used by Opus One and Mondavi, Duckhorn and Etudes to produce high quality wines, underlining the sublime quality of the grapes.
However, it turned out that the new vines were more vulnerable to phylloxera, and only the original J.J Cohn vines survived. Today, they are referred to as "old men" and they produce extremely full-bodied wine, which is the characteristic of Scarecrow.
When J.J Cohn died in 1996 at the age of 100, the estate was put up for sale. As a result, Cohn's grandson Bret Lopez took over 25 hectares as part of a package deal. And it is those 25 hectares, with partially planted vineyards, that today are the backbone of the famous Scarecrow wines. In fact, only two hectares of the original vineyards remain here, resulting in minimal production of the stunning wines. As an example, the 2016 vintage of Scarecrow was produced in only 24,000 bottles, which cannot possibly meet the demand.
The table below only includes scores from Wine Advocate and Vinous, as James Suckling has not given scores on Scarecrow wines since the 2011 vintage. The vintages included in this investment tip are rated between 97 and 99 points on average across the two respected critics. Note here that Wine Advocate, the leading critic of American wines, awards between 98 and 100 points to all six vintages you have the opportunity to invest in here:
If one category guarantees extremely high scores from the greatest critics, it is the best American wines. Yet a vacuum has emerged here, and in the wider perspective, the prices of the best American wines have not kept pace with the price increases of the best French ones. That said, there has been nice movement across the wines we have covered which, at least in terms of towering ratings, are comparable to Scarecrow: The 2014, 2015 and 2016 vintages of Screaming Eagle and Hundred Acres Kayly Morgan and The Ark, respectively, have seen average annual price increases of 3-11.5 % since October 2018, while the 2016 Hundred Acre Few Far And Between, as an example, has increased 17.6 % YTD. 2016 Spottswoode has been more moderate, and the price here has increased 6% since our investment tip on July 2, 2020.
Therefore, it is purely a question of personal preference whether you invest in vintages with 100 points or vintages that are placed slightly below. This is not a recommendation of one vintage over another, but a recommendation of Scarecrow's top wines in general.
Scarecrow is coveted due to the vines' title as old men. Scarecrow is coveted due to high scores across vintages. Scarecrow is coveted because quantities are extremely limited. And in addition, there is the potential that lies in the rapidly increasing number of affluent Americans who both can and will drink the best American wines.
Here, you are not just investing in a reputable producer. You are investing in Napa Vallay, the American stronghold of quality wine, and you are investing in the massive potential of top American wines.
Everything about Scarecrow Napa Valley California Cabernet Sauvignon wine producer profile, wine tasting notes, wine and food pairing tips, best vintages, history of the property, information on their wine making techniques, terroir and soil. You can also read about the Grapes used for California wine and learn about the extensive History of Napa Valley, California Wines
Scarecrow as a producer of Cabernet Sauvignon does not have a long, fabled history, like many of the most expensive California wines. In fact, they are one of the few recent cult wine phenomena to have taken off over the past few years. That says a lot about Scarecrow Cabernet Sauvignon and its popularity with wine lovers as the Cult wine craze has largely fallen by the way side. Scarecrow made their debut California wine in 2003. While the winery is new, the vineyard has a long history dating all the way back to the end of World War 2. That was the year that John Daniel, Jr, (the original owner of the vineyards now used by Dominus,) convinced his friend J. J. Cohn, to plant 80 acres of Cabernet Sauvignon. Those vines became the backbone of all the legendary vintages for Inglenook that JJ Cohn helped produce.
The barrel aging program for Scarecrow is unique. The wine of Scarecrow is aged in 90% new, French oak barrels for 12 months. At that point, the wine returned to tanks for blending, which is followed by an additional 10 months of aging in barrel.
This small production wine is difficult to find and expensive. But it is a unique, tactile style of California Cabernet Sauvignon that is worth the effort to seek out. The entire production of Scarecrow Cabernet Sauvignon is sold through a mailing list.
Scarecrow recently began producing a second wine M. Etain, which is also offered to mailing list customers. The name like Scarecrow is an hommage to the Wizard of Oz film, as the name can be translated to Tin Man in French.
Scarecrow wines are best served at 15.5 degrees Celsius, 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The cool, almost cellar temperature gives the wine more freshness and lift. Young vintages of their red wine can be decanted for 1-3 hours, depending on the character of the vintage. This allows the wine to soften and open its perfume. Older vintages might need very little decanting, just enough to remove the sediment.
The red wine of Scarecrow is best served with all types of classic meat dishes, veal, pork, beef, lamb, duck, game, roast chicken, ribs, hamburgers, barbecue, roasted, braised, grilled dishes and stews. Scarecrow is also good with Asian dishes, hearty fish courses like tuna, salmon, mushrooms and pasta.
The Scarecrow story begins in a patch of earth with a fabled past. The J.J. Cohn Estate, where Scarecrow grapes are born, borders what was once the legendary vineyard of Inglenook winemaker Gustave Niebaum, whose plantings blanketed more than 1,000 acres of the Napa Valley at the close of the 19th century.
John Daniel Jr. took the helm at Inglenook in 1939, determined to restore the label to pre-Prohibition standing and produce world-class Bordeaux-style wines. In 1945, Daniel convinced his neighbor, J.J. Cohn, to plant eighty acres of Cabernet vines on the 180-acre parcel Cohn had purchased a few years prior. The property served as a summer retreat for Cohn's wife and their family. He had no ambitions to become a winemaker himself, but Daniel promised to buy his grapes, so Cohn planted vines. The rest, as they say, is history.
J.J. Cohn Estate grapes are highly sought-after in part because Cohn bucked the trend, begun in the mid- 1960s, of replacing vines planted on St. George rootstock with the supposedly superior AxR#I hybrid. Over time, vines grafted onto this new stock proved highly vulnerable to phylloxera. But by then, virtually all of the old St. George vines in Napa had been destroyed. Only the original 1945 J.J. Cohn vines survived. These highly prized "Old Men" continue to produce uncommonly rich fruit -the hallmark of Scarecrow wine.
A powerful Cabernet, with a core of mulled plum, black currant and blackberry fruit that will take some time to fully unwind; when it does unfurl, the wine will have a backdrop of warm loam, tar, maduro tobacco and roasted cedar to nicely offset the fruit. (JM) (10/2022)
GK: We had met with Bret and Mimi, owners of Scarecrow, two days before the auction and tasted the wine. We also tasted the wine again at the auction on Saturday. I told Bret that $180,000 was where we would go if need be. Since, the prices headed higher all day at the auction, I knew then it was going to go over 200,000. We just went a little over, we were in a dog fight at the end. 041b061a72