Each wine produced at Barnett Vineyards is either estate bottled or from a single vineyard in another viticulture district that we have chosen. The wines, therefore, are inextricably linked to the vineyards from which they originate. The estate vineyards are all located at the top of Spring Mountain and are planted to Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Cabernet Franc. The majority of the vineyards are terraced on slopes that are 30 degrees or more. The original estate vines are over 30 years old and are planted on a 6x10 foot grid. In the past few years much of the original vineyard has undergone redevelopment and now vines are spaced at 4x4 feet. The topography is so steep and the plantings are so closely spaced that traditional farming methods such as tractors and disking are not possible. These vineyards are completely farmed by hand from bud break until harvest.
Both soil content and weather contribute to the uniqueness of the estate wines. The soils are poor in nutrients and contain much rock, the richer topsoil having washed down to the valley floor many years ago. This poorer soil makes the vines work harder to produce fruit, the results being smaller crops and smaller, more intensely flavored berries. The location and elevation of the property contribute substantially to the characteristics of the wine. The coastal fog, which covers the Napa valley floor many mornings during the growing season, seldom reaches the top of Spring Mountain thus giving our vineyards several hours of additional sunlight each day. The elevation keeps our temperatures an average of 8-10 degrees cooler all year which further results in later bud break and harvest than vineyards located at lower elevations.