Bond is a range of Cabernet Sauvignon-based Napa Valley red wines produced by the team at cult winery Harlan Estate but sourcing fruit from vineyards around the region. The brand name proclaims the strong relationship developed over time between the winemakers and the growers who work with them. The project was conceived by Bill Harlan and Bob Levy of Harlan Estate – a winery that quickly became one of California’s cult producers along with the likes of Screaming Eagle. Harlan Estate sources the majority of its fruit from its own vineyards, but Harlan and Levy were interested in cultivating fruit from specific Napa terroirs with the aim of identifying grand cru-equivalent vineyards.
The result was Bond Estates (the second word was later dropped), which began making wine in 1997 with the first commercial release in 1999. Bond makes five “Grand Cru” Cabernet Sauvignon wines from fruit sourced from sites Harlan and Levy have identified as being worthy of the term. These were selected from over 60 vineyards with which they had worked during their careers. The selected sites are generally small plots of between seven and 11 acres (three to five hectares) on the valley slopes or further into the hills, spread along the Napa Valley from Yountville to St Helena. Bond has its own winery in Oakville near the new Harlan Estate facility. It has the capacity to produce an average 2500 cases per year.