Swiss native Jean Hoefliger trained at some of the world’s greatest wineries, including Bordeaux’s Château Lynch-Bages, before going on to helm the cellars at cult Napa wineries Newton and Alpha Omega. Kelly Trevethen is a member of Alpha Omega’s board, a wine connoisseur and a passionate supporter of Lasallian education. He asked Hoefliger, who consults for wineries all over the world, to work with him on a boutique wine label whose proceeds would fund scholarships for needy and at-risk children to San Francisco Bay Area Lasallian high schools. Thus, Speratus—a name derived from the Latin sperare, meaning “to hope”, was born.
Trevethen sourced grapes for this Cabernet from Sonoma’s Alexander Valley, where fruit develops rich blackberry flavors and smoother tannins than in neighboring Napa. Those qualities are evident in Speratus’s 2011 bottling, which combines fruit from a vineyard in the valley’s cooler, southern end and that from a warmer, northern site. The result is a beautifully balanced red that exemplifies Sonoma Cabernet’s lush charm.