2005 Diamond Creek "Gravelly Meadow" Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon 1.5L

SKU #1033613 97 points Wine & Spirits

 Phil Steinschriber has yet to begin replanting Gravelly Meadow, which is the youngest of the original plantings at Diamond Creek (1972). Closest to the break in the hills that brings cool Pacific air across Diamond Mountain, this is also the coolest of the three sites. Aromatically, this 2005 has a lot in common with the wine from the north-facing Red Rock Terrace. The fruit grows increasingly wild, untamed and energized as it takes on air, red cherry and strawberry with the fatness of petit verdot (as in St-Julien, a tiny portion can go a long way). The fine tannins add a sagebrush flavor to the wine, seeming to add the scent of the California hills.  (12/2008)

93 points Connoisseurs Guide

 Calling this wine "light" is a bit of a reach, but it is nonetheless the least hefty and most mannerly of the current Diamond Creek bunch. Its beautifully focused, classic display of cassis, violets and dusty earth spice in the nose is followed hard on by deep and refined flavors of a similar stripe. Firmed and made ageworthy by its fine finishing tannins, it will need a little less time than its siblings to reach full stride.  (8/2008)

93 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon Gravelly Meadow has a sweet, earthy, minerally character, delicate yet impressively intense blue and black fruits, medium body, sweet, sweet tannin, and a harmonious and impressively balanced mouthfeel. This is not blockbuster by any means, but rather an elegant yet authoritatively flavored wine to drink now and over the next 15 or more years. A fine vein of acidity keeps everything well-poised, precise and fresh. (RP) 93+  (6/2015)

K&L Notes

From the winery: "Wonderful scents of dark fruit, cassis and plums with oak providing vanilla, cedar and a touch of cinnamon. The wine bursts with juicy, mouth-filling flavors of crème de cassis, dried-fruit, sweet vanilla and cherries. Very balanced from beginning to end with a long life ahead."

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Price: $699.00

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Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the M├ędoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world.


- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year.
Specific Appellation:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.