Sebastian Schwander in Zurich profiles Arrow&Branch

Sebastian Schwander profiles Arrow&Branch:

Beckstoffer and elegance? The impossible becomes possible in Arrow&Branch

Short visit in Zurich by Steve and Seanne Contursi. Invited by the exclusive importer  they presented their current Arrow&Branch collection in magnums. Enriched with two ultra rare auction lot, an elegant (!) Beckstoffer and an urgent buy recommendation. The secret status will soon be stored.

Arrow&Branch belongs to the youngest generation of wine in the Valley. And is regarded as (still) undiscovered secret. Northeast of Napa Steve and Seanne Contursi fulfilled their dream of owning a winery and bought the chic property of Tony Soter, who was then direction Oregon goodbye.

The area is known as Tulocay, which is part of the AVA Coombsville. The name of the estate Arrow&Branch (to German: arrow branch) refers to the professional world of Steve, who specialized in numismatics.

It started with the year 2008. Together with her former Winemaker, Helen Keplinger launched it their “Red Wine.” A Cabernet Franc Bland, complemented with Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Later, the Cabernet Sauvignon “Black Label” and the Single Vineyard Cabernet came from the legendary Dr. Crane Hill to.The grapes come, along with their own Estate Vineyard, from a dozen different sources.

After the departure of Helen Keplinger to Bryant Family talented Jennifer Williams (ex Araujo and Spottswoode) is responsible for the wines since 2011th.

The tasting of practically all Arrow and Branch wines in magnums (!) We enjoyed in Bü’s Restaurant in Zurich in the presence of the owners, Steve and Seanne Contursi. Organized was the great occasion of the Swiss Arrow&Branch exclusive importer



2014 Arrow&Branch Sauvignon Blanc

Intense, massive Sauvignon Blanc. Raspberries, pineapple, mild cinnamon notes and honey. Content full on the palate and great length. Fine, subtle oak spice.

17.5 / 20 tr – 2020


Arrow&Branch Red Wine

The “Red Wine” is a blend of 50% Cabernet Franc, supplemented depending on the year with different proportions of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. The grapes come from our own vineyard (oldest Cabernet Franc sticks are soon at age 30) plus purchased batches. The expansion takes place during 20 months in French oak barrels (65% new).

First year: 2008

Production: about 3000 bottles

Price: CHF 120-140

2008 Arrow&Branch Red Wine, Magnum

Bulky, dense bouquet. Empire, opulent cassis and plum game. Vanilla, toast and smoke. Fine minerality. A voluminous palate, strong oak presence. Currently to opulent, but such things can mature. First year, as a result of Frost’s was only 600 bottles.

18/20 2020-30
2010 Arrow&Branch Red Wine, Magnum

Defensive, creamy bouquet. Spicy Cabernet Franc notes, some pepper, pine branches, cedar and rosemary. Among a barrage of ripe, dark berries. Cedar and lavender to the harmonious bouquet. Powerful opener. Content Fully equipped intensively and with great length.

 18 + / 20 2020-30
2011 Arrow & Branch Red Wine, Magnum

Medium weight, blue- and scharzbeeriges bouquet. Currently some wood superficially. Lives more from chubby Merlot as the Cabernet Franc. Palate harmonious, moderate and early ready to drink. Light glutamate notes in the finish.

 16.5 / 20 tr – 2025
2012 Arrow & Branch Red Wine, Magnum

Sweet, ripe bouquet. Spice, cloves, pepper encased by massive black berries. Gross on the palate, full-bodied, good substance and reserves. Polyphonic for vintage. Disclosed much potential. Complex, multi-layered wine. Thrilling in its kind, and away from the Napa Main trams.Worth to follow up.

18 + / 20 2025-40
2014 Arrow&Branch Red Wine, Magnum

Open, primarily fruity nose. Spices, cassis, blackberries. Cabernet Franc is clearly in the structure. Medium-heavy, woven tight, elegant palate. Earlier ready to drink as 2012. That is great! Am looking forward to the 2013er. The visit then at the November Arrivage .

18.5 + / 20 2020-35

Arrow&Branch Cabernet Sauvignon Black Label

2012 Black Label (80 Cabernet Sauvignon with Merlot and Petit Verdot) was launched with grapes from Lewelling and Stagecoach Vineyard. The expansion of this wine takes place for 20 months in 75% new barrels.

First year: 2012

Production: about 3000 bottles

Price: CHF 100-120 / 75cl

2011 Arrow&Branch Cabernet Sauvignon Black Label, Magnum

Classic Napa Cab nose. Dark berry, licorice blackberries. Law broadly structured. Beautifully rounded finish. Already very accessible moderate development potential. Unofficial first vintage, which was not sold.

17/20 tr – 2030
2012 Arrow&Branch Cabernet Sauvignon Black Label, Magnum

Low key, noble bouquet. Dark berry, candy, pop corn. Magnificent wood accompaniment. Fruit lives and the acid blends already very beautiful. Intense, powerful finish.Beautiful symbiosis between Valley Fruit and Pritchard Hill structure.

18 + / 20 2020-35
2013 Arrow&Branch Cabernet Sauvignon Black Label, Magnum

Sweet, dunkelbeeriges bouquet. Earthy flavors, peat, caramel, nut, and cedars. Compact and finely structured palate. Great balance and length. A young, explosive concentrate, with fantastic opportunities for development. A (still) undiscovered gem. Buy!

19/20 2020-40
2014 Arrow&Branch Cabernet Sauvignon Black Label, Magnum

Open, straightforward Cab bouquet. , Mint, candy and candle wax blackberries. Ample, opulent body. Wild, vigorous and unapproachable as a barrel sample.

18 + / 20 2025-45


Arrow&Branch Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon

The newest wine and is the flagship company of Arrow&Branch is the pure Cabernet Sauvignon with grapes from Andy Beckstoffer’s Dr. Crane Vineyard.

First year: 2012

Production: about 3500 bottles

Price: CHF 160-180 / 75cl

2012 Arrow&Branch Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Magnum

Full, voluminous, dunkelbeeriges bouquet. Smoke, tar, rosemary, tobacco and leather. Massive, opulent body, woven tightly. Fine velvet with lots of power and a very long, slightly alcoholic finish.

18 + / 20 2020-40
2013 Arrow&Branch Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Magnum

Open, accessible bouquet. Cassis, blackberry, tobacco, mint and tar dominate. Very little development. Strong stature. Silk fine. Even more intensively than 2012. A wine with depth and unexpected elegance. Enjoyment for tomorrow.

You know my ambivalence about Beckstoffer wines. Too often, the winery owner view compulsion outrageously expensive grapes (from 30 dollars per kilogram) on sale of this famous location to still create an additional luxury Cuvee. To thus exactly meet the Gusto by Robert Parker, reach high points and a ready market. This wine here is an example that it works differently. Beckstoffer and elegance – that’s actually! The Spirit of Jennifer Williams proves it. Compliment and respect!

19 + / 20 2025-40
2014 Arrow&Branch Beckstoffer Dr. Crane Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, Magnum

Restrained in the bouquet. Fine notes of tobacco, cedar, mint, mushroom. Massive fruit on the palate. Fine interwoven, slightly alcoholic. Needs a lot of time. If in 2018 launched.

18 + / 20 2025-50


2012 Arrow&Branch Dr. Crane Vineyard Premiere Napa Valley Auction 18 Lot 23

Mild, restrained bouquet. Extremely classy and graceful nose. Wort, sage, toast accompany wonderfully defensively. Magnificently interwoven body. Sealing, elegant and impressive smoothness. The slightly dry tannins on the finish do not disturb, but confirm the potential that lies in this phenomenal luxury Cuvee.

19/20 2020-35
2013 Arrow&Branch Red Wine Premiere Napa Valley Auction 19 Lot 49

Strong, spicy nose. Multi complex bouquet. Lime, malt, tobacco, coffee, toast. The fruit comes in the palate with tremendous pressure from the deep. Fantastic melting.Intense, dense structure without being luxurious. Silk fine finish. Dreamcloth shortly before the rise in the wine Olympus.

 19.5 + / 20 2020-35