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."
Stags Leap District AVA in southern Napa Valley has a storied history. It is home to Stag’s Leap Cellars, whose 1973 Cabernet Sauvignon won the famous Judgment of Paris blind tasting that included several of Bordeaux’s most exalted First Growths. Vineyards were started in area in the late 19th century, but the district’s rise in prestige started in the late 1960s when Nathan Fay planted Cabernet Sauvignon. Fay later sold his estate to Warren Winiarski, founder of Stag’s Leap Cellars. The district was given its own AVA designation in 1989, and today there are 1,400 vineyard acres. The AVA is especially notable because it was the first in the U.S. to be granted AVA status based on terroir. Its distinctive soils is a mix of volcanic soils, river sediment and loamy clay-like soil. Because the soils don’t retain water well, vineyards in Stag’s Leap tend to grow fruit with great intensity and flavor. Cabernet Sauvignon accounts for 95% of the grapes planted in Stags Leap.
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.