Geyser Peak Block Collection wines are an expression of the unique growing conditions that exist within a handful of vineyards that consistently produce outstanding wines. Each Block Wine reflects the terroir-driven qualities of a unique site, or "block," within the vineyard.
The small, beautifully situated Walking Tree Vineyard is a newly developed site on a steep slope directly above the winery estate, planted as part of Winemaker Mick Schroeter's ongoing effort to seek out more hillside Cabernet Sauvignon vines in Alexander Valley. During the clearing of the site in 2001, our vineyard crew was struck by a remarkable tree which, over a period of months, "walked" from the vineyard's summit down the steep grade, while remaining completely upright. Thus, the vineyard seemed to name itself. Every aspect of this site's development are in keeping with the development of a world-class hillside Cabernet site. The very lean soil and substantial rock in its upper horizon lessen fertility and keep fruit and berry clusters small, while sun exposure and microclimate provide ideal ripening conditions.
The deep ruby color of this sumptuous Cabernet gives way to expressive aromas of white pepper, dark berry fruit and cassis. Aging in French oak barrels softens the otherwise firm tannins and introduces hints of toasted vanilla and leather on the palate. Luscious blueberry and blackberry flavors are refined and perfectly balanced by a spiciness that lingers on a long and elegant finish. Only 217 cases produced.
"A lovely, balanced, elegant young Cab. We're not in Napa Valley anymore, for the wine has a dried cherry herbaceousness and different tannin structure, but it defines the style that made Alexander Valley famous for Cabernet Sauvignon. For all those who complain that Cab isn't food-friendly, this one is. Ageability is almost guaranteed. Best now through 2014, with proper cellaring." -Wine Enthusiast
Geyser Peak Winery
One of California's oldest and most award-winning wineries, Geyser Peak was founded in 1880, a pioneer of the Alexander Valley in Sonoma County. Perched on a hillside across from Geyser Peak Mountain, this beautiful setting overlooks Geyserville, the Russian River and the northern end of Alexander Valley.
The winery consistently garners some of the most prestigious awards in winemaking, including Winery of the Year and Winemaker of the Year honors. Its outstanding team of winemakers and viticulturalists are noted for fruit-forward, food-friendly wines from prime vineyard sources in the Alexander Valley.
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Twice as large as Napa in size, Sonoma County only makes about a half the amount of wine as her northeasterly neighbor. But Sonoma, with her size, is able to vouch for more diversity within her borders, including sub-AVAs that are climatically varied. The atmosphere of Sonoma is decidedly laid back and down home country style. But in wines, they are keeping up with the Joneses, or Napa-ites if you will. 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.
Purchase price: $22.99 First and second nose were great. Very aromatic, fruity bouquet, with good complexity. This got me pretty excited about my first sip. I will say that the actual taste, while still good, did not meet my lofted expectations. I expected a little more body and berry to come out in the taste, but it never really happened as much as I initially thought it might. I did think the spice was pleasant surprise, however. This is a very dry cab with firm tannins, I personally would have with a rare steak, but then again, my opinion isn't that important compared to your own preferences. At the $22.99 price point it's a good value, but at the regular 46.99 price point you could probably do better. I still enjoyed this cab, nevermind my criticisms, and would buy again. As far as Geyser Peak is concerned, I think their Reserve Alexandre Meritage is a more well rounded effort.
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.