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.
Bettina was appointed President of BRYANT ESTATE in 2014. Dedicated to maintaining the legacy her husband Don has created at BRYANT ESTATE, her experience in art and business consulting provide her with extensive knowledge and skill in executive management, strategic business development as well as an appreciation for the artistic considerations in the winemaking process. Bettina is committed to ensuring stylistic consistency and producing wines of the highest quality.
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 and Marketing. A 25-year wine industry professional, Tony’s calling and passion lies in defining brands, cultivating collector communities and leading teams to deliver exceptional wines domestically and abroad.
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 native, Sharon Bishop began her career working in hotels throughout the valley. It was during that time, she discovered her true passion was in the wine industry. Prior to joining BRYANT ESTATE in 2016, Sharon worked as the Wine Club Manager at Truchard Vineyards and as the Assistant Wine Club Manager at O’Brien Estate. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with an emphasis in Marketing from Sonoma State University.
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.