Diamond Creek Vineyards
Brounstein unabashedly admits that his cuttings were smuggled from premier cru vineyards in Bordeaux. He made his first vintage in 1972. Wines from Diamond Creek Vineyards used to have the reputation of being very tannic in their youth. This is not the case anymore.
Brounstein has done a number of things in the Diamond Creek vineyard and the winery to make his full bodied wines more approachable at a younger age. One of the things that made the biggest change was converting the vines to vertical trellises and downward trained Geneva Double Curtain trellises. This exposes the grape clusters to more sun and allows the tannins to soften. The winery is also careful not to extract too many harsh tannins during pressing and fermentation.
Brounstein’s wines are among the most expensive in Napa Valley, which is saying a lot. He does not sell anything for under $150, and some bottles fetch $300 or more. Jerry Luper was the winemaker at Diamond Creek for the first two decades, and Phil Steinschriber currently has the job.
A team of venerable consultants assist during the winemaking and blending processes at Diamond Creek. Dick Peterson, his daughter Heidi Peterson, and Leo McCloskey all help Steinschriber assemble the final blends.