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Diamond Creek Volcanic Hill Cabernet Sauvignon 2015

  • RP96
  • JS94
  • WS93
  • WE93
  • W&S93
750ML / 14.5% ABV
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750ML / 14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Volcanic Hill is the longest lived of Diamond Creek's wines. The winemaker describes these wines as "full bodied, loaded with intense ripe berry fruit, cassis, violets and a smoky richness, finishing with good length and firm tannins."

Critical Acclaim

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RP 96
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Deep garnet-purple colored, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Volcanic Hill opens with dusty soil, cloves and fragrant earth scents with a core of red and black cherry preserves, plum pudding, blackcurrant cordial and mocha with touches of cedar chest and potpourri. Very big, rich and decadently fruited, it fills the mouth with powerful fruit and a taut frame of fine-grained tannins plus great freshness, finishing long and perfumed.
Rating: 96+
JS 94
James Suckling
Aromas of hot pumice, flowers, spices and hints of blackberries. Full-bodied, round and very fruit-forward; yet it holds back. Lovely to drink now and even better in the future.
WS 93
Wine Spectator
Strikingly complex and well-defined by firm tannins and loamy earth notes, yet the core of herb-laced dark berry, spice, mocha and espresso flavors should make for an alluring drink in the near future. Best from 2022 through 2033.
WE 93
Wine Enthusiast
Sanguine and earthy, this is a thick, concentrated wine marked by its ash-laden soils—the texture and taste influenced mightily by this fact. Leathery on the palate, it offers a mix of mountain-grown berry and plum, with a twist of cassis and violet. This shows aging potential; enjoy best from 2025–2035.
Cellar Selection
W&S 93
Wine & Spirits
A brisk and fragrant vintage of Volcanic Hill, this wine has red currant flavors that last past the muscle of its cabernet tannins. It grows on a hillside of white volcanic ash, facing south, originally planted in 1968 with cuttings from Bordeaux and later expanded, in 2000, from six to 12 acres; the vineyard still includes 2.5 acres of the 1968 planting. This most recent release is savory and clean, with understated ripeness that should carry the wine with grace as it ages.
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Diamond Creek

Diamond Creek

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Diamond Creek, California
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Diamond Creek, California's first "Cabernet only" estate vineyard, was established in 1968. Visionary pioneer, Al Brounstein, defied modern convention and planted Bordeaux varietals on secluded Diamond Mountain. The three distinct soil types on theis 20-acre property produce different single-vineyard Cabernet Sauvignons. Light ash soild of Volcanic Hill is in sharp contrast to the iron-rich Red Rock Terrace and the pebbly Gravelly Meadow. Each year, the estate produces a small amount of long-lived wines that are revered by connoisseurs the world over.
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Diamond Mountain District

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Diamond Mountain is the northernmost mountain appellation in the Mayacamas Range, on the northwest side of the valley floor, above the town of Calistoga. Defined mainly by elevation, vineyards are planted at 400 to 2,200 feet.

Diamond Mountain vineyards receive plenty of sunshine at these elevations and are typically above the coastal fog line. But given its western proximity, the area still easily cools down from early morning and late afternoon Pacific Ocean breezes. The AVA (American Viticultural Area) covers 5,000 acres but just over 500 acres are under vine.

Diamond Mountain soils, mainly weathered, red sedimentary rock and decomposed, volcanic ash, are infertile, quick-draining and produce small, thick-skinned grapes, bursting with chewy tannins.

Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Petit Verdot and Zinfandel have great success here.

Like other sub-appellations in Napa Valley, the Diamond Mountain area had no shortage of pioneer winemakers. Rudy von Strasser led the effort for Diamond Mountain to acquire AVA status in 1999.

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Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon enjoys success all over the globe. Inherently high in tannins and acidity, the best bottlings of Cabernet can age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region and forms the base of the Medoc reds, which are typically mostly Cabernet with Merlot and smaller amounts of some combination of Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot. (Enjoying a great deal of success in various regions around the world, this blend is now globally referred to as a Bordeaux Blend.) Cabernet Sauvignon from the Napa Valley is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious, age-worthy and sought-after “cult” wines.

Tasting Notes for Cabernet Sauvignon

Cabernet Sauvignon is a dry red wine rich in color, tannin and extract. It expresses notes of blackberry, cassis, plum, currant, spice and tobacco. In Bordeaux and elsewhere in the Old World you'll find the more earthy, tannic side of Cabernet, where it is typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California Washington, Argentina, Chile and Australia, you can typically expect more ripe fruit flavors upfront.

Perfect Food Pairings for Cabernet Sauvignon

Cabernet Sauvignon is right at home with rich, intense meat dishes—beef, lamb and venison, in particular—where its opulent fruit and decisive tannins make an equal match to the dense protein of the meat. With a mature Cabernet, opt for tender, slow-cooked meat dishes.

Sommelier Secrets for Cabernet Sauvignon

Despite the modern importance and ubiquity of Cabernet Sauvignon, it is actually a relatively young variety. In 1997, DNA profiling revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

SOU481238_2015 Item# 394949