“2016 is second only to 2013 among the top vintages of the decade so far.” – Antonio Galloni, Vinous, December 2018.
At first, this statement was a bit hard to believe considering each of the past four vintages have all been remarkable in their own right. But after spending some time with our 2016s, we agree wholeheartedly that the vintage is truly outstanding. It’s one of those vintages where everything seemed to go just right. For starters, 2016 began with winter rains which finally broke the five year drought in California. What followed was a growing season which, although it had its share of variability, progressed at as even of a tempo as we could have hoped for. The season ended with a slightly cooler August and therefore, more time for the fruit to languish on the vine and finish developing. As a result, our winemaker and vineyard manager had the luxury of choosing the most optimal picking window; a choice we were not afforded in 2015 and one that was most welcome. The results were gorgeous berry clusters and some of our most balanced and site specific fruit to date.
As is characteristic of this vintage, the fruit was incredibly expressive of its appellation but we also found that it was quite expressive of its specific location in the vineyard as well. The clones in each block of the vineyard sung their own unique tune and beautifully so. As a result, Thomas opted to showcase the strengths of the clones in the two main vineyard blocks by separating them into their own bottlings; the GTS and the NLS. Our hope is that as you enjoy these wines you truly experience the magic of our little jewel of a vineyard.
We thank you for your continued support and we look forward to sharing our 2016 vintage wines with you!
Tom & Nancy Seaver
2016 marked yet another outstanding vintage on Diamond Mountain. A warm spring jump started the season with a slightly hotter than normal June. July looked to follow suit until temperatures peaked mid month, cooling off into August. The fruit at Seaver Vineyards was ready to be picked on September 22 and we harvested that night at peak physiological maturity. This gave us everything we needed to make another one of kind wine from this outstanding vineyard property.
In the glass, the 2016 GTS displays a nearly opaque purple-red hue. Aromatic notes suggest cassis, rhubarb, lilac, fresh loam and sanguine. The palate expresses densely layered notes that include boysenberry jam, toasted cedar, distressed leather, and baking spice. Throughout the mid-palate, there is a distinct minerality which provides a substantial framework. Being a complex mountain Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine will benefit from significant time in a decanter or 3-5 years in the cellar.
The 2016 NLS has an effortless grace to it: round, supple, sleek, and giving without being overbearing. Upon first inspection, aromas of macerated raspberry, plum skin, nutmeg and violet petal emanate from the glass. The palate is layered with dark red fruit notes instilling a juicy core, and a pleasant spice complement to keep things interesting. There are hints on the outside of the palate that are bright, electric and give the palate experience plenty of mouth-watering lift and vibrancy. A finely integrated tannin frame provides structure where you want it most, keeping everything in order. This is a perfect wine to enjoy now while giving the GTS a few years in the cellar.
Thomas Rivers Brown