Corison

California / USA

At A Glance

Winemaker(s)

Cathy Corison

Appellation

Napa Valley

Varieties

Cabernet Sauvignon

Farming

Organic

Quote

My philosophy is to make complex wines that walk the fine line between power and elegance.

Their Story

“I handcraft my Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignons, without compromise, from some of the finest vineyards in the Napa Valley...” — Cathy Corison, Owner and Winemaker of Corison

After the release of Corison’s 25th anniversary vintage, we think it is safe to say that no American winemaker has stayed as true to their core philosophies as Cathy Corison. The 2011 vintage celebrated the 25th anniversary of Corison Cabernet Sauvignon, our second vintage working with Cathy, and for us to share this celebratory bottling in South Carolina was something that we will never forget. Corison is the only Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon producer in our portfolio and it is going to stay that way.

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We truly believe Cathy is producing some of the most balanced, elegant, and structured Cabernet Sauvignon in all of California.

Cathy began her winery in 1987 and has spent over 40 years making wine in Napa Valley. Her winery was constructed in the style of a barn by her husband and is one of the most beautiful places we have ever been. There is nothing like standing on the upstairs porch of Cathy’s winery overlooking her backyard, Kronos Vineyard; a vineyard which breathes life from the ground as if the sun was shining up as much as it is shining down. Cathy makes two Napa Valley Cabernets. Her Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is a blend of three vineyards, two of which she owns. All fruit for the second bottling comes from Kronos Vineyard. Her winemaking style is simple and consistent. If you haven’t tasted Cathy’s wines before, you must, they are simply ethereal.

“My philosophy is to make complex wines that walk the fine line between power and elegance.” — Cathy Corison, Owner and Winemaker of Corison

“These benchland vineyards are located between Rutherford and St. Helena, where deep, stony alluvial soils provide ideal growing conditions for the Cabernet vine. These vines regularly produce some of the most concentrated and superbly ripened fruit anywhere.

My philosophy is to make complex wines that walk the fine line between power and elegance. I employ time-honored winemaking techniques, using only small French oak barrels sourced from several forests for complexity. Mine is a hands-off approach to winemaking; it is my job to let the vineyards speak.”

– Cathy Corison

Interview with Cathy Corison, Owner and Winemaker of Corison Winery

Where were you born and raised? I was born in San Jose, CA but was raised in Riverside, CA, once famous for its orange groves. If you could briefly describe your approach in the vineyard what would it be? The site (soils and climate) are the most important element, of course, but after that I’m looking for balance out in the vineyard. We make many passes though the vines each season balancing the crop with the vigor of the canopy and ensuring that the right amount or air and light get in to the clusters for optimal color and flavor development. In the spring we remove suckers (shoots that are growing where we don’t want them), lateral shoots in the fruit zone and third clusters on any shoot. We treat the morning-sun side of the vines differently than the afternoon sun side. Harsh afternoon sun can sunburn the fruit but more gentle morning sun promotes the flavors and structure I want. Later in the season, at veraison, when the berries soften and start to accumulate sugar, flavor and color, we go through again and drop any fruit that is late in its development and still green. That way we get uniformly ripe fruit at the crusher. What excites you most about your vineyards? Benchland between Rutherford and St. Helena promotes all the things I love in Cabernet: complex fruit ranging from red and blue through purple and black, wonderful floral aromatics, snappy natural acidity and velvety tannins. The gravelly loam soils are perfectly matched to the growth of the Cabernet vine. If you could say one thing to the sommeliers who are introducing people to your wines for the first time, what would it be? My goal is to make powerful and elegant wines that speak of place and are structured to grace the table and enjoy a long, interesting life. What is your favorite type of music? Classical Visit Corison Website