Celia Welch, winemaker for Keever Vineyards and the youngest of four children, grew up in Medford, Oregon, a small town in the Southwest corner of Oregon Wine Country. Her father, an internist, was an avid wine collector and home winemaker who planted a half-acre of assorted vines in their yard for experimentation — everything from French Colombard to Charbono.
Celia never thought wine would be anything more than a hobby. She explains, “When I was a kid, the image of a winemaker was an old Italian man.” However, from very early age she was interested in smells and tastes. Celia can recall a childhood birthday party where she suggested that instead of playing pin the tail on the donkey, a better game would be for guests to try to guess the spices in her mother's cabinet by scent and flavor. Who knew that years later she would be one of the most sought-after winemakers in the world?
Today, Celia Welch is one of North America's most highly regarded winemakers; Scarecrow Cabernet stands out as one of Celia's greatest achievements. The winery's debut 2003 Scarecrow Cabernet sold out briskly, receiving a whopping 98 point score from Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate (the highest score ever for a debut wine).
After her time at Scarecrow, Celia moved on to be an independent winemaker and consultant for some of Napa Valley's most elite labels including Keever Vineyards. Her 2013 Cabernet is a glowing representation of her skills as a winemaker. Bright, fresh plums, blackberries still on the vine, grilled figs and just a whiff of ripe sweet pipe tobacco dominate the intense and complex aromas of this fully-ripe Cabernet Sauvignon. The dark cherry notes combine with caramel and vanilla from the new French oak, giving deep bass notes to the aromas. On the palate, the sweet fruit is similarly balanced with the darker characters of mocha and toasty oak.
This wine is delicious at release but will mature and improve over the next six to eight years, and hold easily for fifteen.