The Reviews Are In

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"Very impressed with Byrd Vineyard high altitude wines, estate grown red wines from the highest-elevation vineyards in California. The combination of this altitude + volcanic soil creates vibrance yet delicacy in the wines. I would highly recommend these wines and hope to make it out to the Mendocino area later this year to taste these wines in person. Cheers! "
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2012 Byrd Vineyard Red Wine Mendocino:
"I enjoyed this wine with my mom and sister in Alaska. It was the perfect snowy day wine to me- warmed me right up. The aromas were of dark fruit, smoke, and vanilla. The taste of black cherry, blueberry, plum, and vanilla lingered in my mouth long after the wine left. This was not a high tannic wine but a very smooth and velvet mouthfeel. Would pair this with food or by itself."
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"If you're looking for a new red wine to enjoy with loved ones, look no further. I am a big, bold red fan at heart and I love exploring new wines, which is why I was happy to try out Byrd Vineyard wines. The few high altitude wines I've had in the past I've enjoyed and Byrd Vineyard wines is another one I can add to my list. The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon was like velvet in my mouth with beautiful notes of red and black fruit, such as red bing cherry, black currant and tart black cherry. I also enjoyed that there was a hint of black licorice as well adding some nice spicy notes. Due to the higher altitude, their wines are soft in tannins and have higher acidity, which makes them perfect to enjoy now or let them age. Do yourself a favor and treat yourself to a bottle, or more, for your next wine night!"
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"Byrd Vineyard wines are nicely balanced wines that have ripe, bright, and unique characteristics of their 2,400ft elevation vineyard site. You will be sure to enjoy their 2012 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon and their 2012 Red Wine that is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot."
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"Since I began exploring different wines as a hobby a few years ago, it's been a dream to visit the Napa and Sonoma regions and taste my way through! While last year's travels sadly couldn't come to fruition, I could still enjoy the quality and feel via the Byrd Vineyards bottles I received. When we unboxed them, I first noticed the vibrant, beautiful labels. This may sound strange, but I was surprised and impressed with the bottles' considerable weight and the obvious care that goes into bottling each. I was so excited to read about the details of each, the vintage, varietal(s), flavors and characteristics. We decided we couldn't wait to open one up and chose to start with the Red Blend (a 2012 vintage, I think!). We minded the recommendation food pairings and put together a sharp cheese plate as an appetizer for our cheddar and potato chowder. Delicious! I loved the distinct dark fruit flavors and smoothness of the wine. We were very impressed and can't wait to experience more Wines that Soar 🙌"
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"Wow, you guys are producing some fabulous wines in the hills of California! From the red blend to the Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve all of them where outstanding! After tasting all of these fabulous fruity wines, you can’t go wrong with any of them! Simply stunning wines."
2012 Cabernet
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"Rich and delicious. Tannins still strong but opened up after 20-30 minutes. Leather and coffee undertones. Well made."
2010 Cabernet
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"These are showing very well now with deep blue and black fruit and medium-plus body."
2012 Byrd Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
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"Fruity nose with blueberries, black plums, black cherries, raspberries, earth, light oak, licorice, spices, light herbs, black pepper and pencil lead." Full bodied and elegant, with medium-plus acidity and long legs. Dry on the palate with blueberries, plums, red currants, oak, tobacco, earth, cherries, spices, peppercorn and coffee. Long finish with fine grained tannins and tangy raspberries. This is a very tasty Cabernet Sauvignon from Mendocino County in California. Showing nice complexity with a nice mouthfeel. This 9 year old is drinking very nicely now, and will continue to drink nicely in the next 3 to 5 years. Good right out of the bottle, and better with airtime. I gave it a couple of hours in the decanter to open up properly. Very enjoyable by itself, as a sipping wine by the porch. Feels like a fruit forward right bank Bordeaux. Tangy and spicy. Rich and elegant. I paired it with a Charcuterie board of meats and cheeses. 100% Cabernet Sauvignon grapes are grown at 2,400 feet of elevation. 14.5% alcohol by volume. 91 points. $65.
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"Clear dark ruby. Cassis, leather, and spice nose. Medium to full bodied, piercing cherries, pepper, sweet tannins, sage, some heat, and a medium finish. A nice streak of pure fruit with enough structure to keep it interesting.​"
Sarah @sippincville
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"Immediately upon receiving the wines from Byrd Vineyard, I knew I would be impressed. The labels are gorgeous and the heavy weight of the bottle gave me the impression that a lot of thought went into designing the perfect bottle of wine. The first wine I tasted was the 2012 Red Wine which is a red blend. We absolutely loved it and are excited to try more wines from this vineyard. I would highly recommend purchasing a bottle (or many!) from Byrd Vineyard! I promise that you won't be disappointed."
Kristy @kristys_winetravels
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"As we briefly discussed back in November, high altitudes can generate vines with higher quality grapes as measured by a greater balance and concentration; and before I dive into the wines of Argentina, I wanted to first try a high altitude wine with which I’d have more familiarity - a Bordeaux blend from Byrd Vineyards.  Byrd’s vineyards sought out by mountain climber and explorer Bruce Byrd, seek to capture that high altitude essence from their perch at 2,400 feet at the far northern end of the Mayacamas range in Mendocino County, California.  This bottle here is the 2012 Red Blend featuring Cab Sauv, Merlot and Cab Franc. It was aged in 40% new French oak for 30 months. On opening the tannins were tight and quite prevalent with notes of dark cherries and blackberries dancing around the edges.  It was initially what I would describe as a timid and shy personality. It totally gave me an image of a shy kid on the first day of school - hands in pockets, shoulders up and tight, but whose feet are shuffling around and eyes glimmering as he watches the kids around him, totally wanting to jump in and play.  And like that shy little guy, after an hour or two, in this case in a glass, an entirely different personality emerged - one not afraid to play or shine. Here both red and black fruit flavors were jumping from the glass. Whisps of violets danced above the rim with blackberries, dark cherries and spices to follow and there was a distinct underlying herbal character.  On the palate, those previously tight tannins had softened elegantly lending a backbone of structure to this incredibly bright and fruit forward wine. It showed a beautiful balance of flavor, acidity, structure and a generous finish. It retains those big Bordeaux style qualities, but also demonstrates an elegance and remarkable purity of fruit flavor. It was a pleasure!  And with this bit of “research” complete, I now have a good sense of what to look for from other high altitude wines."
Sara @somminthecity
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"I had the pleasure of tasting some incredible Byrd Vineyard wines over Christmas weekend, including the 2012 Cabernet Reserve, the 2012 Cabernet, and the 2012 Red Wine! Thanks to #byrdvineyard for sending them to me! 🍷 These #highaltitudewines are estate grown in Mendocino, CA and are really something special! 🌟 The weight of the bottles alone and the gorgeous labels is what really intrigued me until I tasted the wines (using my @coravin) and fell in love with the dark bold fruit, silky tannins in each one of them, and the complexity and layers they showcase. The 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon grows at 2,400 feet above the valley floor. This wine reminds me more of a Bordeaux style wine, and opens up beautifully! It’s warm, fruit forward and ideal for this winter weather ❄️ The 2012 Cabernet Reserve is stunning with silky smooth tannins, dark fruit, and subtle oak. I decanted the Reserve which helped it open up quicker, and paired it with Eggplant Parmesan which was an ideal choice to compliment the fruit in this wine! The 2012 Red Blend is ideal for cheese courses and fattier foods, so I enjoyed this wine with some cave cheeses, charcuterie, and figs, which complimented the dark fruit and layers of currants and blackberries in this wine.🍷"
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"The 2012 Byrd Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve was such a treat to share with my fiance for Valentine's Day. The wine is rich, elegant and smooth. I love California reds and Byrd Vineyard has an impressive selection. I paired the wine with a delicious pesto ravioli with sun dried tomatoes and sausage, which was the perfect compliment to this full bodied Cabernet. I'm looking forward to trying more wines from Byrd Vineyard and recommending them to my friends & family."
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"Immediately upon receiving the wines from Byrd Vineyard, I knew I would be impressed. The labels are gorgeous and the heavy weight of the bottle gave me the impression that a lot of thought went into designing the perfect bottle of wine. The first wine I tasted was the 2012 Red Wine which is a red blend. We absolutely loved it and are excited to try more wines from this vineyard. I would highly recommend purchasing a bottle (or many!) from Byrd Vineyard! I promise that you won't be disappointed."
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"What better way to celebrate the weekend than to drink some amazing wines from @byrdvineyard 🍷🥰We received @byrdvineyard ‘s wines and we fell in love with them! @byrdvineyard offers the finest wines that is from unique mountainous terrain and high elevation- the highest-elevation vineyards in California. This enabling balanced phenolics of brilliant ripeness and acidity. A combination of optimal soil conditions, farming by hand, and attention to each and every detail results in distinctly specialized wines. Definitely recommend!"
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"Magic in a Bottle! Recently I was blessed with the opportunity to taste 3 amazing wines from the Byrd Vineyard collection, and what a treat! Byrd proudly produces wines exclusively from grapes grown in their own vineyard which boasts an elevation of 2,400 feet, allowing for a longer growing season, smaller, more intense berries packed full of titillating phenolics. The winemaker definitely put their heart into the production of these wines, as you can truly taste the mountain air and volcanic soil in every sip. The 2012 Red Blend was fantastically flavorful and easy drinking, providing notes of ultra fresh blackberry, black cherry and cranberry so vibrant it almost jumps out of the glass. The fruit is the captain of this ship, but matched exquisitely with notes of scorched earth, dark chocolate and freshly spanked leather. With a full-bodied mouthfeel, high acidity and high yet well structured tannins, this bottle disappeared almost as fast as we opened it! The 2012 Cabernet and 2012 Cabernet Reserve were a revelation. Both wines were absolutely beautiful, pure and original expressions of Cabernet. Crazy vibrant fruit wrapped in LAYERS of dark chocolate. The fruit is so fresh on this wine you'd think you plucked it from the vine yourself, which is really amazing considering this wine is a 2012 vintage and has 9 years of age on it. If the tannins weren't so beautifully integrated and refined, you would never know the age on this wine as even the color is vibrant and still very much "alive". Both wines showcase a lengthy finish that absolutely delights the senses long after you take your last sip. If you're someone who appreciates wine on a deep level, you will fall in love with these wines time and again. The fruit, expression of terroir and passion in this wine are top level and will definitely shine as part of your next tasting. "
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"Byrd has vineyards located at high elevations in California which gives their wines a unique, rounded, elegant and beautifully balanced flavor. The higher altitude also results in wines with softer tannins and higher acids, making it the perfect drink for those who love a bold, full body red wine. I recently tried their 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon Mendocino and loved the fruity flavors from the red and black currants combined with warm spice and vanilla. The wine had a beautiful deep red color and a long length finish."
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"I brought Byrd Vineyard's 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon to the house of a friend who normally drinks beer. Luckily, this may have been what fully converted him into a wine lover! The bold Cab coupled with the smoothness of the finish was truly remarkable. The wine tasted fantastic immediately out of the bottle but also opened up throughout the evening, revealing more complex flavors of vanilla and black currant. We paired ours with a rich, chocolatey flourless cake and the result was spectacular. Overall, if you need to convert someone to reds in the right way, this is an incredible wine that does it right!"

The finest wines have always been the product of place, soil, terroir, elevation:

The tiniest fraction of all wines of the vintage. This is extreme farming…150 days here is like 180 days on the valley floor: the vines don’t shut down. The higher you get, the sun radiates more…and these vineyards are at an amazing 2400 feet…softer tannins, higher acids. Wines from altitude: richer extraction, higher intensity of phenolics and photosynthesis, UV penetration; all altitude-specific qualities yielding rounded, elegant, beautifully balanced examples of extract and finesse. From the geographical perspective alone, this is one of the most special places in California. From the vignerons perspective, this far northern end of the Mayacamas Range offers persistent sunshine without too much heat enabling balanced phenolics of brilliant ripeness and acidity. Virtually nothing intrudes between the mountain and the Pacific Coast in this remote new wine region.


Ten years ago mountain pioneer Bruce Byrd began climbing these peaks and exploring these volcanic soils.

Byrd’s vineyard is blessed with mountainous terrain: marine sediments, shale, sandstone, chert, and gravel, These are the highest-elevation vineyards in California. So far above the fog line, the cooler temperatures produce smaller, significantly more intense berries and phenolics. Occasional temperature inversions hasten ripening and stave off frost. This quality and purity of ripeness and intensity of flavor shines in our Byrd Vineyard wines.


Above the fog line at this high altitude, our soils have no shortage of volcanic ferrous content… after all, this is the extension of the Mayacamas Range south to Mount Veeder and Monte Rosso. We really like the amazing soils. It’s red volcanic loam with a lot of pebble-sized gravel in it. You really get the clarity of the fruit at this elevation. “Pine Mountain (Byrd’s new AVA neighbor) will be recognized as one of the top regions in California for Cabernet”, says Hugh Reimers.


Byrd Vineyards’ Estate Wines are now available.

Bruce Byrd and his workers hand-harvest, de-stem and cold-soak prior to fermentation, meticulously working to emphasize the ripe, bright, unique character of Byrd’s Estate Vineyard wines. Taste Wines that take flight!

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