Diamond Mountain is located at the northwestern side of Napa Valley, near Calistoga. Earth-friendly practices are used to prevent rain erosion on the terraced hillsides. Partial barrel fermentations, in-barrel malolactic fermentation and new French oak all contribute to this wine’s complexity. The bold, ripe flavors complement full-bodied entrées, especially grilled steak with small red potatoes drizzled with sage butter.
Appellation: Diamond Mountain
Barrel Aging: 22 Months, 100% French Oak (75% New)
Varietal Composition: 98.5% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1.5% Cabernet Franc
“So aromatic you can smell the forest floor and berry character. Full body, yet reserved and tight. Beautifully clear and vivid fruit and fine tannins. This is very polished and focused. A fantastic example. Better in 2021.” - James Suckling, December 2017
“Containing just 1.5% Cabernet Franc, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Diamond Mountain has a deep garnet-purple color and pronounced black pepper and spice nose over a core of blackberries and blueberries, plus touches of pencil lead and iron ore. Medium to full-bodied, the palate is firmly structured with grainy tannins supporting the muscular earth and mineral flavors, finishing with great texture and expression. It needs another 2 to 3 years and should drink well over the next 25+.” - James Suckling, October 2017
Our 2014 Diamond Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon expresses the bold, mountain-grown fruit of its provenance—a vineyard on Diamond Mountain, which is part of the Mayacamas Range that flanks Napa Valley on the west side. Terroir nuances of forest loam, slate and mountain sage layer the intense cassis and blackberry aromas, while hints of caramel, allspice and cardamom come from new French oak barrels. From the full, plush entry to the persistent, dark-fruit finish, the wine is beautifully balanced. Muscular, yet fine-grained, tannins structure the wine and promise cellar worthiness. Consider decanting this wine if you choose to enjoy it in its youth.
The beautiful, forested Diamond Mountain District, designated an American Viticultural Area in 2001, rises 2,200 feet above northern Napa Valley. We select the grapes for our Diamond Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon from vines in blocks 3C and 6A of our estate vineyard, which is known as Peterson Vineyard. Block 3C is budded to Cabernet Sauvignon clone 169, while Block 6A is clone 4. The vineyard site’s deep, well-draining Aiken loam soils—iron-rich and acidic—are formed from weathered basic volcanic rock. Cool breezes coming through the Sonoma Gap give the grapes their excellent sugar-to-acid balance and long hang time.
Dry, early and shaking is how 2014 will be remembered in Napa Valley, yet it had a silver lining with small, concentrated berries and high quality. February’s rains brought the total rainfall up from low to adequate, and helped to relieve three years of drought conditions. Warm temperatures promoted early budbreak in spring and accelerated grape maturation. Just as harvest began, a dramatic 6.0 earthquake shook Napa Valley awake on August 24; Provenance was fortunate to come through unscathed. We finished the very compact, plentiful harvest by mid-October and celebrated the vintage’s ripened-to- perfection grapes.
We hand sorted the grapes first in the vineyard, as we picked them at dawn, and then again at the winery for optimum quality. We cold soaked the must for gentle extraction and fermented it in a combination of 60-gallon oak barrels (to seamlessly integrate tannins) and stainless steel tanks. Following extended maceration and pressing, the wine completed malolactic fermentation in barrels to round the acidity and enrich the mouthfeel. Gentle rackings naturally clarified the wine, while barrel aging melded complex oak nuances with the ripe, dark-fruit expression.