BRYANT ESTATE reflects the vision of proprietors Don and Bettina Bryant. After purchasing land on Pritchard Hill nearly 30 years ago, Don replanted the estate with 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, employing modern viticulture practices and nurturing a team of local and international masters of their craft. His efforts quickly established one of California’s premier First Growth wines, the Bryant Family Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon, now among Napa Valley’s most acclaimed labels. BRYANT ESTATE wines are currently harvested, blended and produced entirely by hand from grapes planted and grown on the original 13-acre estate, as well as on neighboring vineyards on Howell Mountain, Las Posadas and Madrona. The wines are also bottled, labeled, wrapped and packed by hand on the estate, then shipped directly to customers.
Spanning nearly 20 miles from the San Francisco Bay to the foot of Mount St. Helena, Napa Valley—with its many microclimates, rich soils, diverse geological features and deep traditions—is the ideal setting for producing some of the world’s finest wines. The BRYANT ESTATE property overlooks Lake Hennessy on the western slope of Pritchard Hill, a discreet enclave situated in the Vaca Mountains between Oakville, Howell Mountain, Rutherford and Chiles Valley. Perched above the fog line at a 900-foot elevation, the steepness, undulating shape, light and ventilation make Pritchard Hill one of the most dynamic sites in winemaking.
Scientists have traced the origins of Napa Valley soils back 145 million years. Accumulated in shallow waters beneath the young Sierra Nevada Mountains, sandstone and shale deposits formed the rocks of the Great Valley Sequence. Petrifying in the subaquatic depression, the rocks ground and twisted under the colliding tectonic plates. Over the course of 25 million years, these tectonic plates shifted and collided, resulting in volcanoes that rained lava and volcanic ash over the valley. Eventually, volcanic deposits along with sandstone and shale were forced upward, forming the Vaca Mountain Range, where BRYANT ESTATE currently sits. Vast areas of eroded sandstone and shale blanket the area just below the winery.
At its boundaries, the terrain becomes rocky—the basalts and andesitic rocks a testament to the massive lava flows of the Sonoma Volcanic Era. To develop the vineyard, numerous volcanic boulders were removed. The remaining rock formations provide deep fissures where foraging grapevine roots find moisture and nutrient-rich minerals. Since the end of the Ice Age, intense weathering caused by heavy rainfall in the area pulled potassium and silicate minerals off the surface and left behind rich brown clay loam. The predominant vineyard soils are known as Hambright, Guenoc and Sobrante. These geologically young soils are intensely mineral-rich, thereby producing extraordinarily powerful wines.
We use no pre-emergent herbicides and embrace the biodiversity of our cover crops, relying wholly on elemental forces, such as fire, to coordinate the vegetative growth alongside our vines. As we proceed along an organic/biodynamic trajectory, we have introduced chickens to the vineyard to provide natural fertilizer to our rocky hillside vineyard, natural pest control to our riparian blocks and healthy eggs to our team.
Don, a successful entrepreneur, and Bettina, a performing artist, film producer and art curator, met through their mutual appreciation of the arts and it remains a thread woven throughout their lives. As long-time collectors, they understand the importance of art in bringing beauty, perspective and hope to the individual and to the world. They also share an unwavering commitment to excellence in every endeavor they undertake.
Born and raised in Nashville, Bettina Bryant was inspired by art and wine at an early age by her parents who immigrated to the United States from Maienfeld, Switzerland, a picturesque town nestled in the mountainous wine-producing canton of Graubünden.
An independent art curator and producer with initial training in classical music and dance, Bettina was selected by Mikhail Baryshnikov to join the American Ballet Theatre at age 17. Bettina toured extensively in the United States and abroad, performing both classical and modern dance repertoires crafted by legendary choreographers such as Agnes DeMille, Sir Kenneth Macmillan, Antony Tudor and Twyla Tharp. While performing with the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, Bettina attended Columbia University and received honors in Art History. Bettina then migrated towards corporate and private art collection management, and produced the acclaimed feature documentary film Our City Dreams celebrating the lives of five decades of contemporary women artists.
In 2007, Bettina's future husband Don Bryant invited her to join BRYANT ESTATE and in 2014 she was appointed Proprietor and President of the winery. Dedicated to maintaining the legacy established by her husband, Bettina has devoted herself to producing wines of the highest caliber, an ethos that begins with responsible stewardship of the land followed by intense focus on technical precision in winemaking. Bettina has embraced a holistic, ecological and ethical approach to farming, gardening, food and nutrition espoused by Dr. Rudolf Steiner. In addition to overseeing the continued meticulous production of the acclaimed Bryant Family Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon from their Pritchard Hill estate, Bettina has been instrumental in expanding the portfolio to include the BETTINA Proprietary Red Wine and DB4 Red Wine blends, which are sourced from properties managed by the estate’s vineyard manager and great friend David Abreu. With the 2016 vintage, Bettina also propelled the production of a limited edition Cabernet Franc from their Pritchard Hill property.
Bettina has passionately supported numerous philanthropic initiatives, which include arts institutions such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art and the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. Bettina is also a mental health advocate and is devoted to supporting Alzheimer’s research and awareness through Inspire Napa Valley and the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) as well as depression research through ONE MIND in honor of her late father Fridolin Sulser.
Appointed BRYANT ESTATE’s winemaker in 2018, Kathryn “KK” Carothers honed her winemaking acumen working in vineyards and wineries in the Napa Valley, Corsica, France and Margaret River, Australia. Returning to Napa for an opportunity to join the Bryant team, Kathryn was promoted from intern to enologist to assistant winemaker, working alongside oenologist Michel Rolland and viticulturist David Abreu. Kathryn then spent two years biodynamically farming and making the wine at Napa Valley’s ADAMVS before returning to BRYANT ESTATE. KK earned her B.S. from the School of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University studying viticulture and enology.
Michel Rolland has been a valued member of the BRYANT ESTATE team for more than 10 years. Considered the most esteemed wine consultant in the world, Rolland provides a wealth of experience, an outside perspective, as well as an expert palate. His exceptional talent in the blending process has solidified the BRYANT ESTATE signature style.
David Abreu is a third generation Napa Valley native whose interest in farming dates back to his youth. He founded David Abreu Vineyard Management in 1980, and has since built a reputation for meticulous vineyard care with the sole aim of making the best wine possible from any given site. Having worked our vineyard for nearly two decades, David and his team have intimate experience with the property and farm it meticulously. David’s knowledge, standard of excellence and superb palate make him a tremendous asset to the BRYANT ESTATE team.
Originally from Washington State, Brianna was drawn to wine for its ability to fuse science, nature and art into a single medium. Appreciating the importance of each of these individual components, Brianna has pursued experiences in research, vineyard management and winemaking. Brianna obtained her Bachelor of Science in Viticulture and Enology from UC Davis and was involved in researching agricultural land succession and yeast metabolic capabilities. While working at Cain Vineyard and Winery, she collaborated with UC Berkeley to research insect vectored pathogens. Brianna’s past work experience also includes Chalone Vineyard in Monterey, Paul Hobbs’ Viña Cobos and Spottswoode. At BRYANT ESTATE, Brianna is excited to help weave vines of distinct hillside properties into wines of mirrored complexity.
Tony joined BRYANT ESTATE in 2018 to oversee sales, marketing and day to day operations of the domain. A 25+ year wine industry professional, Tony’s calling and passion lies in defining brand identity, cultivating collector communities and leading teams to deliver exceptional wines domestically and abroad. As Chief storyteller, Tony enjoys sharing his love and passion not just for Bryant but for all wines.
After obtaining a B.S. in Biotechnology from UC Davis, Alana was recruited to join E&J Gallo's research team. From there she traveled to Argentina to complete a harvest at Bodega Catena Zapata in Mendoza, before settling in Napa. In Napa, Alana’s experiences included running Brasswood Cellar's custom crush laboratory, handling Kapcsandy Family Winery's direct to consumer sales, and creating her own wine and label. At Bryant Estate, Alana strives to bring the passion behind the winemaking process into all facets of the business.
Joining the team in June 2017, Adam brings 8 years of winery and vineyard experience to BRYANT ESTATE. Having worked in France, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and Oregon, Adam’s diverse experience alongside some of the most venerable wineries in the industry makes him a valuable cross-functional contributor to our estate’s rich history of crafting some of the finest wines in the world. A St. Louis native, his passion for wine growing began in Australia where he worked in the vineyards while attending graduate school with a focus on Urban Design & Sustainable Development. Adam has garnered respect in the industry for an extreme level of care, craft and collaboration.
A Napa Valley native, Joe Welch joined the BRYANT ESTATE team in 2011 after a career in construction. Joe assists the team with harvest and cellar duties, and has been particularly indispensable with his mechanical and facility maintenance skills.
Tavo hails from Atacheo Michoacan, Mexico and began working with David Abreu Management in 1990. After working many Abreu ranches including Inglenook, Staglin, Colgin and Harlan, Tavo became foreman at BRYANT ESTATE in 2007. Tavo’s favorite part about the vineyard is the natural balance of the site. He is responsible for prepping and planting all of the lower blocks.