Cartlidge and Browne’s Power Trio of Exceptional California Wine
Posted by Kailee SmithSep 15, 2022 5:18:40 PM
3 minutes to read
Cartlidge and Browne first burst onto the winemaking scene in 1980 and have since become one of the most successful California wine producers. Not just for their incomparable quality, but their great value, allowing them to stand out in an incredibly competitive market.
From their Cabernet Sauvignon to Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, we’ve provided in-depth tasting notes and food pairings from their power trio in this blog.
Keep reading to discover more!
California Wine: Where it All Began
Fuelled by an interest in the world of wine, construction worker and wine lover, Tony Cartlidge, escaped to Napa Valley to find employment within the industry. In 1980, he partnered with Glen Browne, a friend and savvy businessman with money to invest, to create the infamous Cartlidge and Browne. But the pair did things a little different from the competition – not just because money was short, but Cartlidge enjoyed the freedom of breaking rules.
Their wines were crafted in a small Napa Valley garage, where they built their empire from scratch and became the original garage winery. Officially, they’re known as “Garagistes”, a term deriving from the Bordeaux region of France, meaning “rule-breaking garage winemakers”.
Together, they scoured the state for the best vineyards to attain the most attractive grapes, allowing them to produce noteworthy wines. From Napa Valley to Mendocino, Sonoma to Lake, each harvest was brought to their garage to craft some of California’s finest beverages.
For those with a penchant for balanced red wines, Cartlidge and Browne’s Cabernet Sauvignon will no doubt excite the senses. Produced with three California-grown grape varieties from vineyards near Lodi, Clarksburg and Paso Robles, stainless steel fermentation is followed by 2-week ageing on skins in their garage winery.
With every sip, a fruit-filled delivery of berry and plum tickles the palate. All the while a masculine bouquet of cedar, cola and toasted oak dance under the nose. This powerful California wine is the perfect partner for hearty meat dishes such as filet mignon and prime ribs, but equally, sits well alongside a cheese-led charcuterie board.
Meet the only white wine produced by the Californian duo – Cartlidge and Browne Chardonnay. This delightful recipe certainly revs up your energy levels with wonderfully fresh flavours of pear, melon and light citrus. An interesting fusion of straw, lemon, caramel and hazelnut creates a tantalizing aroma with incredible depth and dimension. Many would say it’s a classic beverage to accompany roasted chicken on a cozy Sunday. Though the delicate taste of salmon and fish cakes also pair well, maintaining that wonderfully light feel on the palate.
It’s all thanks to a meticulous production process that enables Cartlidge and Browne to create such a notable wine with an abundance of possibilities. Following stainless steel fermentation and partial malolactic fermentation, ageing on yeast lees perfects this delightful Chardonnay.
The final addition to the trio, Pinot Noir, is a foodie’s delight. Many call it the food-friendly red wine as it pairs beautifully with many dishes from filet mignon to lamb and aged cheddar. Produced with grapes from vineyards in Clarksburg and Lodi, cherry and rhubarb burst onto the palate. An unusual bouquet of cherry cola and vanilla accompany the sweet yet tart delivery, creating an unmissable wine with bundles of character.
The Cartlidge and Browne power trio ultimately comprises something for everyone. Therefore, it’s the perfect collection to surprise your dinner guests or gift to loved ones on special occasions. And for such great value, you likely won’t find California wines with the same level of quality – both in flavour and production – making it a celebration to remember.
As the Marketing Manager of Azureau, Kailee helps clients discover and connect with our global portfolio of Wines & Spirits. Once upon a time, Kailee worked in finance. On Bay Street Kailee learned the value of a balanced portfolio - a ken she now applies to New and Old World wines rather than stock and bonds. Currently completing her WSET 3 studies, Kailee's passion for wine is deep-rooted in her second home, the Okanagan Valley, where she studied under the lead Sommelier of Mission Hill Family Estate Winery. When not sipping and sharing wine, Kailee is hunting down vintage barware or dog-sitting for friends, family and local rescue charities.