Wine Seven Stones Cabernet Sauvignon
Named after the massive granite sculpture that dominates the estate, the 400-500 cases of Seven Stones we produce each vintage is the end result of the meticulous efforts of our entire vineyard and winemaking team.
Our 2.75 acres of vineyard produce a singular Cabernet Sauvignon of striking complexity, deep concentration and substantial structure. Our releases have garnered consistent praise from the wine press over the years. Built to last, we feel that our wines will age gracefully and may be enjoyed with family and friends for years to come.
Wine Notes Select a Vintage
Seven Stones 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon
The official rainy season kicked off a few days after New Year’s Day. A couple storms passed through bringing close to 10” of rain over a two-week period. A sense of normality had returned to the valley, and growers knew that it was going to be another strong season for the vineyards. The wet soils slightly delayed bud-break for the 2019 growing season. Sap flow started in the vines around the end of March or early April. The season began a couple days later than 2018, and roughly one week behind the five-year average. The summer of 2019 was phenomenal. A few days broke triple digits, but most were spent with blue skies in the mid-80s to low 90s, absolutely ideal weather for ripe flavors while maintaining bright acidity. Véraison came right on time at the five-year average. Harvest began on Oct. 1st and continued through Oct. 9th with two separate picks. A total of 6.8 tons of Cabernet Sauvignon and .72 tons of Cabernet Franc were brought to the winery.
The nose begins with cherry, plum, roast beef, cedar, tobacco, toffee, milk chocolate in a deep basso nose. After a proper decant it the nose begins to show notes of raspberry. The initial attack on the palate begins with very broad and rich cherry and raspberry. The mid palate is layered with black cherry, plum, cocoa and espresso. The finish has great length with chocolate, black cherry and roast meats. This is a nimble Seven Stones that shows great freshness with bright balanced acidity straight away.
Jeb Dunnuck; 98 Points
Seven Stones 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon
The season began about one week later than 2017, and roughly two weeks later than the five-year average. The spring and summer of 2018 can best be described by the Goldilocks Principle. The days were hot, but few were above 100°F. The nights remained in the 40s, and the fog came each morning and burned off in the afternoon. The early part of May was cooler than desired, but still warm enough to ensure a solid fruit-set. Véraison was two weeks later than the five-year average, but clusters “colored-up” at a rapid pace. Cluster uniformity was fantastic, and winegrape yields looked promising. So far, the season looked to be a great one for both winemakers and growers. During the first week of October, a small amount of rain fell on the valley. The grape clusters had no problem making it through the wet weather, and quickly dried out a few days later. Harvest began on September 28th with a small amount of Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon from Blocks 5 and 6. The remainder of the fruit was brought in with two additional picks on October 6th and 8th. The 2018 vintage will be remembered as one of high yields and high quality in which a slow and steady pace of the season allowed for optimum picking decisions.
On the nose you pick up hints of raspberry, cola, red currants, clove,cinnamon, blackberry, tart cherry, blueberry, anise, cedar, pomegranate, wet rock and black truffle. The initial attack on the palate is rich and layered with black licorice and blackberry pie. The wine lingers on the mid-palate with great weight, body and balance and a soft textured, fine grain tannin structure underlying the flavors of roast beef, cherry, plum, espresso and roast duck. The finish has great length showing the silky textured tannin and the flavors of cherry jam, tobacco, tar and blackberry pie. Presenting good acidity and freshness, this is one of the brightest and freshest wines from this property and has years of life in front of it.
97 points Wine Advocate, 98 Points Jeb Dunnuck
Seven Stones 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2017 vintage will be talked about for many years to come. There were multiple unforeseen challenges that kept growers and winemakers on their toes until the very end. A hail storm in June, August & September heat waves, and unprecedented California wildfires in October. As with the previous winter, the end of 2016 brought wet weather to Napa. By the time bud-break neared, some parts of Napa reached over 50” of rain. Bud-break came about a week later than 2016, which was closer to the five-year average. The early summer months were mostly uneventful. Véraison was about a week late, but an exceptionally hot August quickened the ripening curve. During the last week of August, some areas reached as high as 115°F. Row orientation played a key role in the grape’s ability to withstand the scorching heat. Unfortunately, many growers lost a sizable portion of the 2017 crop to dehydration and premature raisining. Toward the end of the summer, but post harvest for Seven Stones, terrifying firestorms erupted around Northern California. The whole valley united and worked together to still achieve a successful harvest. In Napa, there were the Tubbs, Atlas, Nuns, and Partrick fires that frightened communities on all sides of the valley. Regions of Atlas Peak, Calistoga, and Mt. Veeder were hard hit by the two-week long inferno.
The wine begins with a powerful nose of plum, cherry, cigar tobacco, cedar,pomegranate, porcini, lavender, black licorice, toffee, almonds, roast beef and leather. Followed by a bold attack of ripe plum, cherry, dark chocolate, toffee and black currant. The mid palate is rich and dense with great structure showing plum and porcini. The finish is long, plush and velvety with cedar, tobacco, plum and cherry. Plum and tobacco seem to continue forever.
93 Points Wine Advocate
Seven Stones 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon
After multiple years of dry weather, the Napa Valley finally received an ideal winter. The rain began in November and continued intermittently through mid-April. Each period of rain was just enough to fill the soil profile while avoiding unwanted runoff. From 12/1/15 through 3/31/16, most of the valley saw close to 21” of rain. The vineyards were perfectly prepared for bud-break with ample water available for the season. Consistent weather continued on through early spring with daytime highs rarely deviating outside the range of 55°F - 65°F. Soils warmed up nicely and bud-break began roughly 5 to 7 days ahead of the 5 year average. Another uneventful frost season came and went in 2016. Only a handful of days posed any threat of damage and were easily avoided with protection measures. Spring weather was “textbook.” Daytime highs were in the 80s with brisk nights, and crystal clear skies. It was perfect bloom weather for consistent fruit-set. Even in areas of low cluster counts, little shatter was expected. The mild weather pushed bloom back closer to the 5 year average. But, flowering was much more consistent compared to 2015. This led to greater uniformity during Veraison. Vine vigor was balanced, and crop load looked decent. Veraison began a little later than 2015. The weather continued to be ideal, with average highs in the mid-80s all the way through August. Cool nights helped maintain bright acidity to balance the firm tannins. The foggy mornings dominated most of late summer and winemakers were at ease with letting the fruit slowly develop rich flavors. There were three heat spikes during September around the 7 th , 18th, and 25th. Temperatures barely reached triple digits, and the fruit held up beautifully. The last big push came during the week of October 10th. With an inch of rain in the forecast, wineries tried to empty tanks so that they could make room for the remaining wine grapes. By October 14th most vineyards had been picked. A few outliers that could weather the storm remained until late October. Overall, harvest wrapped up just in time for the winter weather to begin. For the fifth year in a row, Napa enjoyed a world-class vintage. Winemakers were more relaxed than the previous year, and the balanced chemistry of the wine grapes showed great potential.
The wine begins with cherry, toffee, coffee, plum, black currants, blackberry, tobacco, cedar and pomegranate. A soft, rich attack with begins with cherry, chocolate, plum, evolving into a very full mid-palate with immense weight and layering of tobacco, chocolate and plum leading to a long finish of orange zest, plum, chocolate, tobacco, black currant, blueberry. The wine exhibits a great length with no hints of bitterness and displays a good tannin grain with wonderful polish.
Wine Advocate 98+ points, Vinous 96 points
Seven Stones 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon
The drought in California continue for th fourth consecutive year. There was a brief reprieve November and December, where the valley saw 12.5" of rain, but multiple years of heavy rainfall will still be needed to make any significant impact. Bud break came early with most vineyards around 2 weeks ahead of the 5 year average. Wrm days quickly accumulated and by the end of March, the 2015 season was easily outpacing the previous 5 years. The early spring weather was full of bountiful sunshine which helped the canopies develop strong shoots with healthy foliage. Bloom was early and cold temperatures caused some vineyards to take 4 to 5 weeks to complete. This resulted in shatter in the vineyards and lower yields for the vintage. Harvest began abut the same time as 2014 with a heat spike for 4 consecutive days in mid September. This led to some dehydration, but sugars were low enough to handle the stress. The 2015 vintage held more challenges than previous years, but winemakers were optimisitc that tannin and flavor character were strong and that quality was high.
On the initial palate you get black cherry, plum, blackberry, cigar wrapper, cedar, vanilla bean, violet and iris, porcini, toffee, forest floor, chocolate butter cream frosting, wet rock, roast meat, black licorice, marzipan, cola, leather and flint as the wine further opens to black currants and roast duck. The wine has a very supple attack, which then explodes on the palate with coffee, cherry, cedar, plum leading to a full rich mid palate with layers of chocolate, plum, cherry, tobacco and toffee. The wine is seamless from start to finish. The tannins are edgeless, layered pillows of silk full of flavor leading to a finish of black currant, cherry, toffee and dark chocolate.
97 Points Wine Advocate, 96 Points Vinous
Seven Stones 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon
For the third year in a row, Napa experienced an exceptionally dry winter with most of the valley only receiving about 2" of rain from November through January. February brought some relief with 11.5" of rain. Bud break came 2 -3 weeks early and growth was healthy and strong. Spring weather was ideal bringing bloom 1 to 2 weeks early. As in 2013, Veraison was 10 - 14 days early and as berries developed the vines seemed to be very well balanced. On August 24th, Napa experienced a 6.0 magnitude earthquake. Fortunately, Seven Stones was distanced from the epicenter and suffered no damage. In addition, an unexpected hailstorm hit the southern end of the valley with 1.5" of ice and rain in a 2 hour period. Despite nature throwing these curveballs, we once again experienced another stunning vintage with the fruit picked in mid-October.
The initial nose begins with blueberry pie, black currant jam, cedar cigar box, roast meats, fig, blood orange zest, blackberry, dark chocolate, toffee and the most divine violet high note. The aromas turn from black fruits to red fruits over the span of two hours highlighting cherry and unveiling a black licorice and forest floor evolving from oxidation on the early fig and cedar notes. The attack unleashes a surf-able wave of velvet texture that vibrates the complex layered flavors of chocolate, fig, blackberry, toffee and an almost imperceptible fresh mint through to the finish.The transition from attack to mid palate to finish is seamless crescendoing in a slight dust on the tannins under layers of fat in the way that Wagner Opera’s always end in a musical approximation of stardust.
Wine Advocate 98, Vinous 94+
Seven Stones 2013 Cabernet Sauvignon
After another exceptionally dry winter, bud break arrived 5 -7 days later than average. Fortunatelly, a warm April allowed everything to catch up with nice, consistent spring weather leading to an early bloom. Early season heat helped with grape skin, tannin and overall flavor development. Yields appeared to be average to sightly abve average with potential for an exceptional vintage. A bried scare occured during the last week of June when temperatures broke 100 degrees for a few days, but veraison had yet to occur and berries were still green and hard so protected. Most areas were 10 - 14 days earlier than average for veraison. With the exception of some minor fruit thinning the rest of 2013 was thankfully uneventful. A very early harvest wrapped up by the end of September. The 2013 vintage is one for the history books. The season had days full of beautiful weather and cold nights to maintain grape acidity. Thick grape skins with rapid sugar development allowded us to pick based on flavor development.
The color is inky black, opaque and profound. On the nose you get bright fresh black currant, black licorice, raspberry and blackberry, toasted almonds, cedar, vanilla, mint, dark chocolate, cardamom, black truffle , nutmeg and toffee. There is incredible complexity in the nose with great intensity. The initial taste brings an attack of currants, black cherry and rich vanilla in a very rich, dense mid-palate, with an incredible length that seems to never leave the palate, then finishing with cherries, cocoa, caramel and vanilla.
Wine Advocate 98. Vinous 94+
Seven Stones 2012 Cabernet Sauvignon
The winter leading up to the 2012 growing season was exceptionally dry. By the end of February, most of California was in at least moderate drought conditions. Fortunately, a much needed wet March occured with the valley receiving about 8.5" of rain. Bud break began roughly 5-7 days later than the 5 year average. Beautiful spring weather shortened the bud break to bloom period. Bloom lasted to mid June with a small amount of shatter due to two brief showers and cold night time tempertures. Veraison was early and warm. consistent weather led to July, August and September being encouragingly uneventful. 2012 will be remembered as one of ideal growing conditions, with hot days and cool nights.
The bouquet begins with cherry, black currant, clove, cedar and tobacco, slowly evolving into black licorice, fig, candied violets milk chocolate and vanilla. The attack is soft and supple with cherry, chocolate and roasted almond leading to a silky midpalate of black and red fruits balanced with bright acidity. The wine finishes with great length featuring cedar, cherry, blackberry, tobacco and vanilla. We recommend to decant at least an hour for the wine to show beautifully now, although it will age for at least a decade or more.
Wine Advocate 96 points, Vinous 93+ Points
Seven Stones 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon
What began with a wet winter and spring continued with rainfall into mid-June that delayed bloom and disrupted fruit set resulting in shatter in parts of the region set the stage for a long, cooler-than-average growing season with a later-than-average harvest beset with autumn rain storms. The precipitation measuring season ending on June 30 found the region more than a third above normal in rainfall. While this is good news for water resources, the cloud cover and cool temperatures delayed vine development by several weeks at the onset of the growing season. Few high heat events occurred at any point this year, but growers managed more open vine canopies to ensure sunlight, warmth and good air circulation around the grape clusters. The shatter resulting from the rain events in June was variable by vineyard location hitting some locations harder with projected crop diminished by more than 30% while leaving other sites nearly untouched with near-normal crop.
After a consistently cool summer season, significant mid-October rain pushed the vintage even later. But growers were rewarded with weeks of fantastic weather, a prolonged Indian summer that provided needed ripening time.
Mold, rot, and botrytis were challenges to the grapes that were not harvested, and had a major impact on the quantity of the harvest, but not the quality. The commitment to quality runs so deep and strong in this valley that systems for effective sorting were already set-up, both in the field and at the wineries. While quantity was low, the fruit this year will make for well-balanced wines with good intensity, structure and texture with a brightness of flavor.
The 2011 begins with a very complex nose of blueberry, black cherry, cedar, cigar tobacco, nutmeg, clove, plum, red currant and fig. The attack is voluminous, dense and rich, with blackberry, cedar, plum, fig, chocolate and tobacco dominating, great density and richness in the mid-palate with richly robed tight grain tannins building progressively. The finish is long starting with fig and chocolate and moving to fig, plum, toffee and cherry and finally back to fig, toffee and tobacco.
Wine Advocate 91 points, Vinous 95+ points
Seven Stones 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon
In some years, grape growers feel like baseball players in the batting cage, swinging at whatever Mother Nature throws their way. In 2010, rainfall returned after three dry years, pushing bud break, flowering and fruit-set back. Summer’s cooler temperatures resulted in a later-than-average veraison. Then a two-day heat spike coincided with harvest’s first day on August 24. With canopies thinned to adjust for the cooler season, grapes at various sites experienced some sunburn. Although the season’s swings resulted in a late and shortened harvest with lower yields, vintners were excited about what they were tasting from the vineyards—concentrated flavors that will hit elegant, structured wines out of the park.
The 2010 is similar to the 2006 in its exquisite balance of fruit, acid and tannin, and has gained considerable complexity since it was reviewed by The Wine Advocate last year. The ample structure and compact nature of the wine require one or two hours of decanting, after which it drinks elegantly because of its impeccable balance. The 2010 echoes a Left Bank Bordeaux in character. It is also our first release to include a small portion of Cabernet Franc from a new vineyard block we planted in 2007. There is no question it will continue to gain nuance with a few more years of cellaring, and should have a very long life ahead.
Wine Advocate 95+ points, Wine Spectator 92 points
Seven Stones 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon
From 30 days of intense frost in spring 2008 to fewer than five in 2009, this vintage was much less eventful for growers who were able to sleep nights not worrying about the threat of frost—or the lack of water to combat it. Late spring rains and June’s warm spell helped curtail excessive canopy development. Instead of a typical growing season’s 14 days of 100°+ temperatures, 2009 counted four or five overall, again reducing the demand for water.
Though rainfall was about two-thirds of normal for the third year in a row, the timing of it was on the vines’ side. Couple that with the lack of frost and the mild, relatively cool growing season, Mother Nature gave vines and grapes the best scenario possible.
The 2009 Seven Stones is a fruit-forward, rich Cabernet of black cherry, spice and chocolate flavors. It is a low-acid, hedonistic offering. It is our only vintage made of 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, with previous vintages having a dollop of Merlot. Along with the 2005, this vintage is the most “ready to go” with an hour decanted, pairing well with Beef Burgundy. It has enough “stuffing” to age for another decade. If you like your Cabernet with lots of up-front fruit flavors, this is the wine for you.
Wine Advocate 97 points, Wine Spectator 95 points
Seven Stones 2008 Cabernet Sauvignon
The New Year began with intense storms which quickly waned; for the second year in a row, Napa Valley received about 60% of normal rainfall. One of the driest springs on record prompted vines to push out early, providing the “perfect storm” for frigid, dry air to create the deepest and longest frost period in decades, threatening the budding vines.
Spring daytime temps were perfect, yet the frost persisted. Then, within the same week that many had been irrigating for frost protection, vineyards had to be irrigated to forestall a multi-day heat spike just when vines were beginning to flower, a time when fruit and vine development is particularly susceptible to extremes. This resulted in fewer clusters with smaller berries.
Harvest began in mid-August, then a Labor Day heat spell ratcheted everyone into high gear as several varieties ripened simultaneously. Cellar crews worked around the clock to crush the fruit that was coming in all at once--Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot virtually one atop the other.
Suddenly, temps dropped to well below normal, allowing red varieties to receive optimal hang time, excellent ripening and balanced structure.
Our 2008 Seven Stones is a structured wine of complex, red fruit flavors, ample structure and substantial tannin. It carries a mineral “kick,” and a very long finish. The wine is evolving at a slow, steady pace and needs a few more years before it becomes fully approachable. The 2008 is a masculine Cabernet with flavors that are “stacked and packed.” If you wish to drink this wine, we recommend three to four hours in a decanter. We think the 08’ will have a very long life ahead and will gain elegance and definition with a few more years in your cellar.
Wine Advocate 94+, Wine Spectator 94
Seven Stones 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2007 vintage contrasted with previous vintages and with early predictions—yet grape growers brilliantly adapted to changing conditions. The year began dry with a warmer-than-normal winter that continued into spring, resulting in earlier budding, bloom and set. A mild-to-cool summer finished with a Labor Day heat spike that added the boost of sugar development that fruit needed to complement the excellent acid structure developed in the white varieties.
Harvest started in early to mid-August. Unseasonably cool weather and nearly an inch of rain in the second week of October did not affect the crops as Indian Summer returned with warm, clear days and vineyard crews sprang into action to finish harvest for a vintage of exceptional quality.
The 2007 was our most acclaimed wine, upon release. The inverse of our 2006, the 2007 needs at least two or three more years to age before it is ready to show its best. The wine is massive, with brooding, black-fruit flavors, Italian herb notes and bold tannins. If you wish to sample a bottle, we recommend you decant the wine for several hours and serve it withe a hearty meat that can stand up to the boldness of its character
Wine Advocate 98+ points, Wine Spectator 95 points
Seven Stones 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2006 harvest finished in early November and will go down as a “grower’s year” as Napa Valley faced a variety of challenges from New Year flooding to spring’s continued wet weather that delayed budbreak. By early June, the sun came out and vines began to bloom and set fruit. In mid-July a record-setting 10-day heat wave struck, but canopies had not yet been thinned and young clusters were shaded from the hot sun. August’s cooler weather continued throughout harvest, allowing for moderately paced and deliberate ripening and a long harvest period. Rain came in the first week of October, but the white varieties were in and the black varieties were not damaged.
The 2006 Seven Stones has transformed more dramatically than any other wine we’ve yet produced. Originally a very structured wine, with compact black fruit flavors, we originally believed this wine would take a decade to integrate and come together, but have been proven wrong. We are thrilled at how this wine has evolved since its release in 2009! With an hour decanted, the 2006 drinks better than any vintage we have released, and gains complexity as it sits in the glass over dinner. The structure has moderated and the refined red cherry flavors have fanned out into a complex, civilized elixir, pairing well with a nice filet. to age well for many more years.
Wine Advocate 92 points, Wine Spectator 92 points
Seven Stones 2005 Cabernet Sauvignon
2005’s winter rains took pause for a dry, mild March, then began again with record-setting precipitation late into the growing season, delaying bloom and set. The summer months were cool and pleasant with few heat spikes. Fog and cool temperatures were a concern heading into September as sugar levels were yet to rise in all varieties. Warm, nearly perfect conditions arrived with an Indian Summer making for a later-than-average harvest, providing winemakers with fruit with extended hang and ultimately realizing excellent sugar development and balanced acids with a larger-than-average crop of what could be a signature vintage from Napa Valley.
The 2005 Seven Stones is approachable now, especially if you like your Cabernets ripe and sexy. Racy cassis, blackberry and truffle aromas are prominent in the nose. This is an exceptionally fruit-forward Cabernet, with big, ripe flavors that roar from the glass. The tannins are substantial, yet fine-textured. As the wine opens, it evolves into a round, hedonistic tasting experience, pairing well with duck and beef. Give this bottling 45 minutes in a decanter to show its best.
Wine Advocate 99+ points, Wine Spectator 92 points