Mascot is a small-production label founded by Will Harlan in Napa Valley. The wines under this label are made from the younger vines of Harlan Estate, BOND, and Promontory, but The Mascot bottles share an exclusive preview at the development of their estates. Founded as an initial experiment to see what the young vines were capable of producing, the wines were initially only shared with close friends and family. By 2008, Will officially released the first vintage to the public since production had increased significantly. They create just one wine made from Cabernet Sauvignon, and the bottle is aged for five years before release. Assembled into a single, youthful expression, this wine shares a glimpse into the evolution and pedigree of its parent estates.
In general, the winery is focused on capturing the purest expression of each property and their winegrowing philosphy is their way to get there. Although their philosophy would qualify at Biodynamic or Organic they like to take the best parts of these and move beyond their dogmas. For example, they allow the cover crop to grow and subside in normal cycles without the use of cultivation. This is for two reasons, one that they dont want to disturb the activites of soil creation and health that are caused by the soil microflora and secondly because they are on a hillside and don't want to errode the soils.
The source of The Mascot's label came from the family's collection of favorite engravings. The engraving of "Prince" was commissioned over one-hundred years ago, by the president of the Farmers Deposit National Bank of Pittsburgh, for the bank's stock certificates. The dog, an english bull-terrier, lived at the bank (greeting customers and employees alike), and became a beloved symbol of their down-to-earth, loyal, and personal customer service values. He also served as a mascot to local teams that the bank sponsered, and in keeping with this belief The Mascot continues to acquaint newcomers with the profound and convivial pleasures of Napa Valley cabernet, opening the doorway to the family's grand vins, whose still deeper roots await.