2.90 ct. California Spessartite

Color:  Medium Dark Orange Clarity:  Eye Clean to Slightly Included
Origin:  Little Three Mine, Ramona, California Cut:  Round Brilliant
Treatments:  None Measurements:  8.1 mm

A simply superb gem from one of the most significant and historic Spessartite deposits in the world.  The Little Three Mine was worked for the better part of the twentieth century; being a part of the pegmatite district in San Diego Co., it produced a number of gem species but was always known best for its exceptional Spessartites.  In fact, the area around this mine was the principal source of gem quality Spessartite for many decades, holding that title until the Namibian finds of the 1990's.  Even at the deposit, Spessartite was not common in many of the pockets and the emphasis was always on collecting specimens - facet grade rough was obtained only from crystal fragments.  As such, gems over 1 carat (let along approaching three!) were always scarce.  We very seldom see a gem with the combination of size, clarity and color that we have found in this piece. 

This stone has everything going for it.  Starting with the color, the gem is a dazzling medium dark orange, just touched with red, the top color for the deposit.  Additionally, the cutting is an absolute precision job in the most popular (and least encountered) shape for Spessartite.  In terms of any inclusions, there are just a few very thin, short veils - absolutely classic for the locale and very, very low relief.  A beautiful stone that once the rarity of the size and locale is taking into consideration becomes a museum grade collector's piece.

$525 / carat - $1522 total