95 Insider Points
94 Points- Cellar Tracker Average
Strong Cab From a Strong Vineyard
There are a few classic names that we can count on from the Napa Valley. St. Clement continues to pump out delicious cabs, and their Armstrong Ranch Cab is right in line. Lush Cabs are in for the season.
On the nose, violet & cherry aromas with a hint of graphite. Full bodied with a balance of luscious fruits and earthy tones- blueberry, cranberry and black currant with pencil lead & mushroom. It flows into a long, velvety finish with dried cranberry. Expect big praise from the fam for this one.
95 Points - JZ December '17
Diamond Mountain AVA, Napa Valley
$0 SHIPPING Selection (2+/btls)
We first fell for Diamond Mountain District age-worthy Cabs from Napa's superstar HALL. Wines crafted from the sparsely planted, (with fewer than 550 acres under vine), where the wide swath of vineyards ambling along the valley floor turn to hills and then, precariously, mountains. Up they climb, vines and terraced slopes and raw, jagged stone outcrops.
But here, we have a new love. Diamond Mountain Cab; a wine that comes from the northern reaches of Napa Valley's Armstrong Ranch.
This rare, singular bottle will transport any Cab lover to the ethereal heights that only the perfect combination of a veteran producer, a unique vineyard, and an unreal vintage can achieve. Bold, dark fruit with a tannin structure that boggles the mind…every glass is the definition of opulence.
Why we love it:
- Diamond Mountain, high above the Napa Valley floor, got its reputation for potent mountain Cab the old-fashioned way: generation after generation of age-worthy, award-winning Cab. In the rocky soils where vines twist their roots in the struggle for water, a dynasty has arisen. The sun at this angle is spectacular and warms the chilly mountain for a slow and steady ripening period ideally suited to the small, dark berries.
- Tom Byrne and Jane Armstrong saw the beauty of this area early on. They bought 13 pristine acres in 1984. Thanks to the moderating influence of warm sunshine and zesty altitude, Tom and Jayne’s Armstrong Vineyard fruit is some of the first harvested each year. And thanks to vineyard guru Luis Galbray, it’s the most meticulously grown fruit around!
- A warm spring, gentle and steady summer, and sublime fall all made 2013 one of the greatest vintages in recent memory. This fruit, already stunning, has the added benefit of a fantastic and memorably perfect vintage.
- The deep purple wine, with its nose of blackberries, graphite, and cigar box, is ponderously complex. The mountain fruit flavors balance harmoniously with baking spice and baking chocolate. The tannin structure and focused acidity offer a bold wine now, and a marvel of complexity in the coming decade.
The deep purple wine, with its nose of blackberries, graphite, and cigar box, is ponderously complex. The mountain fruit flavors balance harmoniously with baking spice and baking chocolate. The tannin structure and focused acidity offer a bold wine now, and a marvel of complexity in the coming decade.
The Diamond Mountain District AVA is an American Viticultural Area located in California's Mayacamas Mountains in the northwest portion of the Napa Valley AVA. The appellation sits at a higher elevation than most of Napa Valley's wine region, resulting in less cool fog coming in from San Pablo Bay, and more direct exposure to sunlight. The soil of this AVA is volcanic and very porous which allows it to cool down quickly despite the increased sunlight.
The St. Clement house was built in 1878 by Fritz Rosenbaum, an affluent manufacturer, and importer of fine mirrors and glass who furnished the opulent homes of San Francisco's "Gilded Age". The Rosenbaums made Riesling and Zinfandel in the cellar underneath their house. Over the years the property was owned by a number of colorful characters, most of whom made wine underneath the house. The St. Clement moniker was born in 1976 when William Casey, a local ophthalmologist, bought the house and built a 10,000 case stone winery behind it. The St. Clement name was a tribute to Casey's ancestors, who helped found the state of Maryland. The cross that is part of the St. Clement logo can be found on the Maryland state flag.
We suggest pairing this wine with port wine-braized beef short ribs, beef tenderloin with blackberry dressing, or roasted duck breast with pecan purée.