Cliff Lede Vineyards was founded in 2002 in the Stag’s Leap District. Lede is a Canadian businessman who collected Bordeaux and other wines before he decided to start his own 60-acre estate in Stag’s Leap. David Abreu replanted the vineyards for Lede, and Lede named vineyard blocks after some of his favorite rock songs and albums, such as “Dark Side of the Moon.” Lede has since acquired a small Anderson Valley winery which he renamed FEL Wines as an homage to his mother, Florence Elsie Lede. In addition to Cliff Lede’s Stag’s Leap vineyard the estate owns twenty acres in a Calistoga sub-appellation. Rising star Christopher Tynan has been winemaker since 2012. The estate makes Cabernet Sauvignon, Bordeaux-style blends, and Sauvignon Blanc. The flagship Cabernet Sauvignon is called Poetry. The 2013 Poetry earned 100 pts from Wine Advocate, which has written that “elegant, well-made Cabernets continue to emerge from this reputable as well as increasingly high quality producer."
Howell Mountain AVA in Northeastern Napa Valley was the first of Napa Valley’s sub-appellations, earning its own designation in 1984, just a year after Napa Valley became an appellation. As the name suggests, the AVA is in one of the highest elevations in the area. Every vineyard in the appellation is at least 1,400 feet above sea level. Some vineyards are as high as 2,200 feet and because of their altitude most of the AVA’s vineyards receive more sun than vineyards at lower elevations, which are affected by fog from the Pacific Ocean and the San Pablo Bay. Howell Mountain was home to vineyards in the late 19th century, but winemaker Randy Dunn is considered the area’s most influential modern pioneer. Dunn moved to Howell Mountain in 1979, acquired property and began making exceptionally rich Cabernet Sauvignon. The AVA also grows Zinfandel, Chardonnay, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. There are 600 vineyard acres within Howell Mountain AVA.
One of the most widely grown grape varieties, it can be found in nearly every wine growing region. A cross between Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc. It’s a hardy vine that produces a full-bodied wine with high tannins and great aging potential.