This top seller sports intense cassis and black cherry aromas complimented by cedary, spicy flavors in the finish. If only all Sonoma Cabernets were this affordable and delicious!
Originally planted by the Stefani family at the turn of the century, this vineyard is located in the heart of the Canyon Valley, a southwest-northeast corridor connecting Sonoma County's Dry Creek and Alexander Valley. Here, soils consist of as much as 30% gravel and small stones; a combination of Pleasanton and Clough series.
Cabernet Sauvignon grapes for this wine were 100% Estate Grown and hand harvested. To intensify varietal character, we employed site-specific vertical trellising, and meticulous shoot and leaf removal to ensure that grape clusters received just the right amount of sunlight exposure for optimal ripening.
The hand harvested clusters were de-stemmed but not crushed, to increase the percentage of whole berries in the fermenter and reduce the potential for bitter tannin extraction. Once dry, the wine was aged in French, European and American oak barrels for an average of 24 months to enhance bouquet, flavor, and body.
The wine completed malolactic fermentation, and was bottled unfined and with minimal filtration
Gallo of Sonoma Winery
The Gallo family tradition in Sonoma County began in the 1930's when Matt and Gina Gallo's grandfather, Julio, recognized the potential of winemaking in Sonoma. The Gallo family now owns eight vineyards in Sonoma County. These vineyards represent a cross-section of Sonoma's diverse micro-climates, thereby adding to the complexity and rich flavors of the award-winning Gallo of Sonoma wines.
Gallo of Sonoma wines represent the best of what Sonoma County has to offer. They are crafted with pride by Matt and Gina Gallo, Third Generation Family Winemakers in Sonoma County, California's premier winegrowing region.
50-50 Give-Back Plan More than just a caretaker of the vines, Julio Gallo believed that his family had an obligation to protect the land by planting vineyards in a way that would preserve the local environment. His first step in accomplishing this task was to set aside as wildlife habitat one acre of property for every acre planted to vineyard in Sonoma County. Today, Julio's grandson, Matt, continues this 50-50 Give-Back Plan, managing a 6,000 acre property portfolio that balances 3,000 acres of planted vineyard with 3,000 acres of natural habitat.
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Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about half as much wine as its northeasterly neighbor. Because of its vast size, however, Sonoma is able to achieve far more diversity within its borders, which include sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid-back and down-to-earth, but the wines are serious and well-made, ranging in style from subtle and elegant to rich and powerful. Grape varieties are more varied here, from Pinot Noir and Zinfandel to Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay.
The largest sub-AVAs of Sonoma include Dry Creek Valley, Russian River Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Each sub-AVA, with its own micro-climate, is unique in its grape varieties and styles of wine. Dry Creek makes a mean Zinfandel while Russian River produces stand up Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The Alexander Valley makes some of the better Cabernet Sauvignons in the county and Sonoma Valley creates excellent wines from all the above varieties. Other grapes found throughout Sonoma include Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah.
It's not rare to see a wine's country of origin listed as "California." A country into itself in the wine world, California makes enough varieties and styles to match many European wine countries. It produces a diverse range of wines that span the quality spectrum.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.
Most wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Crisp
Light to medium bodied wines that are high in acid and light to medium fruit. Typically no oak.
Fruity & Smooth
Light to medium bodied wines with lots of juicy fruit, typically medium acid and medium oak.
Rich & Creamy
Full bodied wines that have typically undergone malo-lactic fermentation and/or spent time in oak.