2004 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
Cabernet Sauvignon •Spaulding Vineyard
California: Napa Valley: Diamond Mountain
What We Say
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Mission Codename: Kingdom’s Gate – Redux
Operative: Agent White
Objective: Secure a exceptional Diamond Mountain Cabernet for our operatives.
Mission Status: Accomplished
Current Winery: Stonegate Winery
Wine Subject: 2004 Diamond Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon
The Diamond District AVA (American Viticultural Area) sits at the northern most tip of the Napa Valley, in the Mayacamas Mountains. The higher elevation of the region sees more direct sunlight and less cooling that the rest of the valley, leading to the production of some of the most concentrated and delicious Cabernet Sauvignon in the entire Napa Valley.
Wine Spies Tasting Profile:
Look – Dense, deep purple and almost black with a dark but clear core with garnet hues that reflect when held to the light. Along the edges the color becomes deep garnet and when swirled, widely spaced thin legs streak down the side of the glass to the wine below.
Smell – Bold and well developed aromas of spiced and earthy black fruit including blackberry and black cherry. An almost meaty savory/spice quality adds to the complex nose with hints of toasted oak, cigar box tobacco, smokey herbs and a touch of dusty minerality.
Feel – This full-bodied wine is dry, smooth and rich with finely grained and textured tannins interlaced with a distinct minerality that makes Diamond Mountain wines so unique. Balanced acidity and a touch of spice emerge as this well-structured wine spreads across the palate.
Taste – Vivid earthy and spiced black fruit leads of the as notes of toasted oak. Smokey tobacco and herbal notes round out the complex but balanced flavors of this wine. Spicy pepper and mineral notes present at mid palate and linger long into the finish.
Finish – Long and lingering with this wine’s spiced and earthy fruit supported by rich and textured tannins and spice.
Conclusion – The 2004 Stonegate Diamond Mountain Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely representative of Diamond Mountain’s rich, dense and complex flavored fruit. A solid structure with mouth-coating tannins that linger long into the finish. Pair this lovely wine with braised short ribs and smokey grilled veggies. Enjoy this wine now and for the next ten years as its flavors will continue to evolve and develop.
For nearly 36 years, Stonegate Winery has been a Napa Valley legend, known for producing the finest estate Cabernet Sauvignon and Petite Verdot. While it led the charge in the early 1970s, today the winery is experiencing a resurgence. The exact details are highly classified, however.
Unless you have double top secret clearance, you won’t be able to read today’s complete mission report. Suffice it to say, all will be revealed – in time.
For now, you may content yourself with today’s exceptional 2004 Reserve Petit Verdot, a wine of wonderful balance, delicious flavors and layers of rich aromatics.
How were we able to procure an allotment of this incredible and mysterious wine? We could tell you, but, you know…
Meanwhile, please stay tuned, and expect another great Stonegate wine – and the full skinny on this mysterious winery – in the near future! And, take it from me, you do NOT want to miss out on today’s great selection. Its that amazing.
Wine Spies Vineyard Check:
The location of Napa Valley’s Stonegate Winery can be seen in this satellite photo.
What the Winery Says
About This Wine:
Our Diamond Mountain Reserve is grown at Spaulding Vineyard, located on the edge of a volcanic crater on Diamond Mountain, along the Western ridge of the Napa Valley. This 17 acre vineyard combines shallow, well-drained volcanic soils with a long, cool growing season.
After completing fermentation, the wine was aged for 21 months in French oak barrels, 67% new and 33% one year old. We then let it bottle age for a year before release.
The Diamond Mountain Reserve exhibits a deep purple color. The nose is intensely scented with cassis and black cherry, with a hint of sweet tobacco. Opulent fruit flavors balance this sophisticated wine with toasty oak and rich, supple tannins. The wine is endowed with crisp cassis and spicy black cherry flavors, which linger through the finish.
About The Winery:
Stonegate, one of Napa Valley’s founding cult Cabernet wineries, has been producing highly prized, single vineyard, award winning wines since its establishment in 1973. The limited production, deep, robust and age worthy wines from Stonegate helped the Napa Valley appellation establish its dominance as one of the world’s top regions for outstanding red wines.
In 2007 a partnership of the Dolan and Hurst winemaking families purchased the brand and its inventories of the sought-after Reserve Diamond Mountain Cabernet Sauvignon and Wappo Vineyard (Rutherford) Petite Verdot. With an uncompromising approach to excellence, Winemaker Phil Hurst – who grew up in the Valley – spares no expense in the procurement of premium Napa Valley grapes and the consistent production of super-small lots of luxurious, age-
worthy wines. The ownership team honors the provenance of Stonegate. Dolan and Hurst bring years of collaboration, wine industry experience and a deep environmental consciousness to invigorate this pioneering brand.
Philosophy: Wine Spectator proclaims the decade of the 1970s as the “Napa Valley Boom Years.” Stonegate Winery joined other pioneering wineries to produce world-class wines which sparked the resurgence of Napa Valley as a dominant contender in the global wine arena.
Focus: Stonegate’s ultra-premium portfolio focuses on Bordeaux varietals from specific blocks within its 199 acres of Napa Valley vineyards.
Location: Stonegate makes its wine at the Laird Family Estate facility on Hwy 29 & Oak Knoll Avenue and its offices are located in Napa, California.
Vineyards: Stonegate owns or controls 200 acres of Napa Valley vineyards including a steeply-terraced vineyard in Diamond Mountain and above the valley, at elevations of 1,000 ft., our other estate vineyards are located in Chiles Valley District of the Napa Valley.
Each block is a selection of vines that enjoy the same terroir and is carefully hand-farmed so that every aspect of the vine is suited to its terrain and micro-climate. Only the best blocks are selected. All fruit is hand-harvested in half-ton bins. Hand sorting in the vineyard ensures only superior quality fruit is reserved for our wines.
Portfolio: Diamond Mountain Reserve, Petit Verdot.
Production: Current: 2,000 cases of which approximately 75% are red Bordeaux varietal wines.
APPELLATION: Diamond Mountain District, Napa Valley
VARIETAL: 85% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Petit Verdot, 12% Merlot
TOTAL ACIDITY: 0.61
RESIDUAL SUGAR: Dry
AGING: Twenty-one months in French oak
PRODUCTION: 830 6-bottle cases