Sebastiani Gravel Bed Red Blend 2013
Blend: 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Merlot, 14% Malbec, 8% Zinfandel.
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Since it’s founded in 1904 by Samuele Sebastiani, Sebastiani Vineyards & Winery has been a Sonoma winemaking tradition. The winery is located in the heart of downtown Sonoma and offers a historic winery with a hospitality center, barrel room with stunning antique redwood tanks, a grand event space and daily tours and tastings.
Planted in 1961, the “Original Vineyard Block” now known as Cherryblock, was planted primarily to Cabernet Sauvignon, which led the winery to create one of Sonoma County’s first varietal Cabernet Sauvignon. Sebastiani has continued its tradition in crafting a variety of Cabernet’s including the iconic Cherryblock, Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and North Coast Cabernet Sauvignon. Utilizing grapes from a variety of premier growing sites created wines with richness and complexity.
Proprietor, Bill Foley, purchased Sebastiani in 2008 and honors the traditions of Sebastiani while embracing the future. Sebastiani Vineyards and Winery continues to create consistent, highly acclaimed wines crafted by Winemaker, David Nakaji.
Home to a diverse array of smaller AVAs with varied microclimates and soil types, Sonoma County has something for every wine lover. Physically twice as large as Napa Valley, the region only produces about half the amount of wine but boasts both tremendous quality and variety. With its laid-back atmosphere and down-to-earth attitude, the wineries of Sonoma are appreciated by wine tourists for their friendliness and approachability. The entire county intends to become a 100% sustainable winegrowing region by 2019.
Grape varieties are carefully selected to reflect the best attributes of their sites—Dry Creek Valley’s consistent sunshine is ideal for Zinfandel, while the warm Alexander Valley is responsible for rich, voluptuous Cabernet Sauvignon. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are important throughout the county, most notably in the cooler AVAs of Russian River, Sonoma Coast and Carneros. Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and Syrah have also found a firm footing here.
With hundreds of red grape varieties to choose from, winemakers have the freedom to create a virtually endless assortment of blended wines. In many European regions, strict laws are in place determining the set of varieties that may be used, but in the New World, experimentation is permitted and encouraged. Blending can be utilized to enhance balance or create complexity, lending different layers of flavors and aromas. For example, a variety that creates a fruity and full-bodied wine would do well combined with one that is naturally high in acidity and tannins. Sometimes small amounts of a particular variety are added to boost color or aromatics. Blending can take place before or after fermentation, with the latter, more popular option giving more control to the winemaker over the final qualities of the wine.