Overseeing the family’s sole Cabernet source, Michael achieves supreme fruit and color extraction. The Simpkins’ vineyard (located just east of Napa) boasts a climate generally cooler than others in the Napa Valley, allowing for longer hang times which promote intensified flavors and layering in the finished wine. The vineyard soil is rocky loam, providing good drainage and low nutrient concentration. Under these stresses the vines work hard to produce a limited amount of the best fruit. Annual production is usually 2,000 cases or less.
The name for BURLY originates from founder Hank McCrorie’s college football days, when he was dubbed “Burly Bear” by the local paper. The nickname stuck among his teammates and given the bold nature of this wine, is more than a befitting tribute.
The oak tree display on the label is not only a symbol connecting the McCrorie’s childhoods – Hank growing up surrounded by the beautiful southern live oaks of North Carolina and Bernice the sprawling live oak trees at the family ranch in Northern California – but also embodies the intrinsic flavors of tannins and oak, balanced by the beauty of its velvety, rich and flavorful layers.