Spectrum Fine Wine Auctions

Grace Family, the Bosché Clone, and a Napa Family History – Bid Now

“I rarely report on them because they are, for all intents and purposes, unobtainable.” – Robert M. Parker, Jr.

In the mid 1970s, Dick and Ann Grace moved to the bucolic Napa Valley to open a new chapter in their lives. Upon purchasing a striking 1881-vintage Victorian above sleepy St. Helena, the Graces, with the help of Jim Barbour, began to plant a single one-acre vineyard with cuttings from Rutherford’s legendary Bosché Vineyard. The Cabernets produced from this vineyard are now among Napa’s finest and rarest examples.

Grace Family Vineyard’s first vintage, the 1978, was picked by five family members and seven friends and produced with Chuck Wagner down the road at Caymus Vineyards, as were the subsequent vintages through 1986. (Grace’s history is marked by a somewhat complex series of partnerships with other likeminded winemakers.) Production from the (now) two-acre, organically-farmed Grace Vineyard was tiny, however – one acre yielded only 150 or so cases – and demand soared as the winery’s critical reception and reputation for world-class, age-worthy wines quickly took shape and skyrocketed. Grace’s wines were suddenly very difficult to attain.

In the early 1990s the vineyard – along with many others in Napa – began to succumb to two common scourges, grape phylloxera and Armillaria mellea. Thus in 1993 only 75 cases were produced, in 1994 175, and in 1995 a mere 70-75 cases (3 barrels) again from only the upper portion of the vineyard. Production finally reached a low of 48 cases (2 barrels) in 1996. So to reach as many of his customers as possible in as collectible a format as possible, Dick began to bottle the wine in unusual 1-Liter bottles that were each etched and laboriously hand-painted – only one 1-Liter bottle was offered to each of the members of the mailing list. The asking price was high, but, as Dick reported to Wine Spectator at the time, each (empty) glass bottle cost him over $52 (or $76 in 2015). Mature examples of Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon thus remain among the rarest and most collectible – and ultimately ageworthy – of Napa’s wines. 

A winemaking family has also grown out of the very unique Cabernet Sauvignon budwood planted at the Grace Vineyard. In the 1980s, Grace furnished Hartwell Estate Vineyards with some of its Bosché-derived budwood for their first plantings in Stags Leap District; Hartwell’s wines were produced at Grace until the 1999 vintage. Another young St. Helena winery, Vineyard 29, was also originally planted with Grace budwood in 1989 at a site only about 100 meters south of Grace and their wine was also produced at the Grace winery until 1998. After planting the Grace Vineyard in 1976 with Dick and Ann, Jim Barbour later planted his own vineyard in St. Helena in 1992 with Grace budwood as well. The early Barbour vintages were also produced at Grace. Longtime winemaker Gary Galleron produced the Grace wines and early Vineyard 29 wines from 1988-1995; legendary winemaker Heidi Peterson Barrett then took over at Grace in February 1995, finished the 1993 and 1994 Hartwell wines, and began producing the Vineyard 29 wines as well.

In this auction we are proud to offer an extraordinarily rare selection of wines from Grace Family Vineyards and from the winemaking family that grew out of its early partnerships. We are offering 20 lots of Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon in three formats (1989-2004), 17 lots of Hartwell Estate Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon in two formats (1990-1997), 7 lots of Barbour Cabernet Sauvignon (1995-2010), 6 lots of Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon in two formats (1993-2002), 3 lots of Galleron Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot (1999-2001), and 2 outstanding lots Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon Special Selection from the acclaimed 1994 and 1995 vintages.

Nearly all of the aforementioned bottles come from The Santa Lucia Highlands Cellar – a single-owner collection of legendary California wines acquired exclusively from the wineries themselves. This extraordinary cellar was removed by Spectrum specialists from a refrigerated, subterranean wine cellar near Carmel-by-the-Sea and transported overnight under temperature control to the Spectrum wine warehouse in Irvine CA.

Lot 212. Barbour Cabernet Sauvignon 1995. 2 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 92WS
Estimate: $95.00, Opening Bid: $75.00

Lot 211. Barbour Cabernet Sauvignon 1996. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 91WS
Estimate: $180.00, Opening Bid: $140.00

Lot 209. Barbour Cabernet Sauvignon 1997. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 93RP
Estimate: $180.00, Opening Bid: $140.00

Lot 210. Barbour Cabernet Sauvignon 1997. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 93RP
Estimate: $180.00, Opening Bid: $140.00

Lot 208. Barbour Cabernet Sauvignon 1998. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 88-90RP
Estimate: $140.00, Opening Bid: $95.00

Lot 207. Barbour Cabernet Sauvignon 2000. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Estimate: $160.00, Opening Bid: $120.00

Lot 1374. Barbour Cabernet Sauvignon 2010. 6 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 89-92ST
Estimate: $700.00, Opening Bid: $500.00

Lot 92. Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon Special Selection 1994. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 95RP
Estimate: $375.00, Opening Bid: $275.00

Lot 91. Caymus Cabernet Sauvignon Special Selection 1995. 5 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 97WS
Estimate: $700.00, Opening Bid: $500.00

Lot 1400. Galleron Cabernet Sauvignon Morisoli Vineyard 1999. 9 Bottles, 0.75L.
Estimate: $650.00, Opening Bid: $550.00

Lot 1401. Galleron Cabernet Sauvignon Taplin Vineyard 1999. 1 Bottle, 0.75L.
Estimate: $80.00, Opening Bid: $60.00

Lot 136. Galleron Merlot Jaeger Vineyard 2001. 1 Bottle, 0.75L.
Score: 92WS
Estimate: $30.00, Opening Bid: $20.00

Lot 232. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1989. 2 Bottles, 0.75L.
Estimate: $190.00, Opening Bid: $140.00

Lot 231. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1990. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 94WS
Estimate: $325.00, Opening Bid: $225.00

Lot 102. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1991. 2 Bottles, 0.75L.
Estimate: $300.00, Opening Bid: $200.00

Lot 230. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1992. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Estimate: $350.00, Opening Bid: $250.00

Lot 228. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1993. 4 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 91RP
Estimate: $450.00, Opening Bid: $325.00

Lot 229. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1993. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 91RP
Estimate: $250.00, Opening Bid: $170.00

Lot 226. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1994. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 94RP
Estimate: $400.00, Opening Bid: $300.00

Lot 227. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1994. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 94RP
Estimate: $375.00, Opening Bid: $275.00

Lot 225. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1995. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 94RP
Estimate: $300.00, Opening Bid: $200.00

Lot 224. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1996. 1 Liter, 1L.
Score: 91ST
Estimate: $275.00, Current Bid: $180.00

Lot 223. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1997. 1 Liter, 1L.
Score: 92+ST
Estimate: $350.00, Opening Bid: $250.00

Lot 222. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1998. 1 Liter, 1L.
Score: 89-92ST
Estimate: $300.00, Opening Bid: $200.00

Lot 220. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1999. 2 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 89-92ST
Estimate: $300.00, Opening Bid: $200.00

Lot 221. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1999. 1 Liter, 1L.
Score: 89-92ST
Estimate: $300.00, Opening Bid: $200.00

Lot 219. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 2000. 1 Liter, 1L.
Score: 90ST
Estimate: $300.00, Opening Bid: $200.00

Lot 218. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 2001. 1 Liter, 1L.
Score: 92ST
Estimate: $250.00, Current Bid: $170.00

Lot 216. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 2002. 6 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 91WS
Estimate: $700.00, Opening Bid: $500.00

Lot 217. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 2002. 1 Liter, 1L.
Score: 91WS
Estimate: $300.00, Opening Bid: $200.00

Lot 215. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 2003. 1 Liter, 1L.
Score: 90ST
Estimate: $190.00, Opening Bid: $140.00

Lot 214. Grace Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 2004. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 90-92ST
Estimate: $375.00, Opening Bid: $275.00

Lot 268. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1990. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 92RP
Estimate: $190.00, Opening Bid: $140.00

Lot 267. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1991. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 92WS
Estimate: $95.00, Current Bid: $70.00

Lot 271. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1991. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 92WS
Estimate: $150.00, Opening Bid: $110.00

Lot 266. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1992. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 90WS
Estimate: $130.00, Opening Bid: $90.00

Lot 265. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1993. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Estimate: $85.00, Current Bid: $60.00

Lot 264. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1994. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 90RP
Estimate: $130.00, Opening Bid: $90.00

Lot 270. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1994. 2 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 90RP
Estimate: $130.00, Opening Bid: $90.00

Lot 263. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1996. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 91ST
Estimate: $85.00, Current Bid: $60.00

Lot 262. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1997. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 89-92ST
Estimate: $100.00, Current Bid: $80.00

Lot 269. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate 1997. 3 Bottles, 0.75L.
Score: 89-92ST
Estimate: $150.00, Opening Bid: $110.00

Lot 276. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Sunshine Vineyard 1994. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Estimate: $130.00, Opening Bid: $90.00

Lot 275. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Sunshine Vineyard 1995. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 92WS
Estimate: $120.00, Current Bid: $85.00

Lot 1648. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Sunshine Vineyard 1995. 7 Bottles, 0.75L.
Estimate: $475.00, Opening Bid: $350.00

Lot 274. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Sunshine Vineyard 1996. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 90WS
Estimate: $95.00, Current Bid: $70.00

Lot 272. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Sunshine Vineyard 1997. 5 Bottles, 0.75L.
Estimate: $300.00, Opening Bid: $225.00

Lot 273. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Sunshine Vineyard 1997. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Estimate: $130.00, Opening Bid: $90.00

Lot 277. Hartwell Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon Estate Sunshine Vineyard Library Selection 1993. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Estimate: $100.00, Opening Bid: $75.00

Lot 247. Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon 29 Estate 1993. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Estimate: $100.00, Current Bid: $85.00

Lot 246. Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon 29 Estate 1996. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 91ST
Estimate: $120.00, Current Bid: $85.00

Lot 245. Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon 29 Estate 1997. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 94RP
Estimate: $150.00, Current Bid: $110.00

Lot 242. Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon 29 Estate 1999. 1 Bottle, 0.75L.
Score: 92-94RP
Estimate: $70.00, Opening Bid: $50.00

Lot 244. Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon 29 Estate 2000. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Estimate: $120.00, Opening Bid: $85.00

Lot 244. Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon 29 Estate 2000. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 90ST
Estimate: $120.00, Opening Bid: $85.00

Lot 243. Vineyard 29 Cabernet Sauvignon Aida Estate 2002. 1 Magnum, 1.5L.
Score: 95RP
Estimate: $150.00, Current Bid: $125.00