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Dyer Vineyard

Dyer Vineyard Diamond Mountain is between St. Helena and Calistoga in the northernmost part of the Myacamas range which forms the western rim of the Napa Valley. Diamond Mountain will soon be recognized officially as an independent appellation. We feel our immediate neighborhood, the 1500 block of Diamond Mountain Road is the "filet" of the area as we enjoy close proximity to Diamond Creek, Diamond Terrace, Von Strasser, and Reverie. These wineries are not only good neighbors but are also all producers of superb and collectable Cabernet Sauvignon. Our site looks to be an ancient rockslide from the hillside above. Ripping the soil to remove rocks in preparation for planting proved futile, so we pushed the largest ones to side, and live with the remainder. Streaks of gravel, chalky tuft, and red soil, all volcanic in origin surround the riolytic stones. Crop levels are low in this difficult site, and have never exceeded 2.5 tons per acre. The vineyard was planted in 1993 to all five Bordeaux varieties: 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc, and 5% each of Merlot, Malbec, and Petit Verdot. Focusing on Cabernet Sauvignon was an obvious choice given the neighborhood, but Bill’s previous experience with Diamond Mountain fruit led him to plant the supporting varieties, selecting specific clones of each. Early on we found that the Malbec did not perform well on this site and budded it over to more Cabernet Sauvignon. More recently we have concluded the Cabernet Franc was particularly complimentary to our blend, and after the 2002 vintage we budded the Merlot vines to give more Franc. The vineyard currently stands at 80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 15% Cabernet Franc, and 5% Petit Verdot.


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Dyer Vineyard, Calistoga, CA, US, 94515 Email:
Phone: 707-942-5502 Web:
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  Dyer Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2001 Dyer Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon is the 6th vintage from our vineyard, and we feel it is perhaps the best yet. The season was spectacular—early budbreak, no spring frost, no rain after April, and a mild summer with no daytime temperatures over 100 degrees during August and September (the critical last stages of ripening occur best under mild conditions). We harvested on October 1, as the grapes achieved perfect ripeness. Our yield was a modest 2.4 tons/acre. The vineyard was picked in one day and fermented as a field blend—80% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc, and 5% each Merlot and Petit Verdot. After 19 days on the skins, the new wine was place in French oak barrels (one-third new) where it underwent malolactic fermentation. After several racking for clarity during its 20 months in barrels, the wine was bottled on July 3, 2003 (Dawnine’s birthday!). Our tasting notes read: loads of cherry and current aromas, with background notes of anise and chocolate—full and rich on the palate with muscular, yet supple tannins.
  Dyer Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon
The 2002 growing season was quite friendly to Cabernet Sauvignon in Napa Valley, and the vintage is being held in high regard. It began with a warm and dry Spring (there was no rain at all in April!) leading to an early bud break, with the lack of soil moisture ultimately resulting in small berries and low yields. The crop on our vineyard was lowered even further when a freak, late season frost on April 28 damaged some of the tender shoots. An inch and a half of rain in early May was well timed, giving the vines a drink during the period of shoot growth, but arriving before flowering and fruit set, when wet conditions can interfere with the pollination. The summer was mild, with warm days and cool nights providing ideal growing conditions. Warm weather near the end of September hastened the ripening and we picked on the 29th. The yield was a scant 1.4 tons per acre.


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