- Producer: Cliff Lede Vineyards - read about the Estate
- Winemakers: Christopher Tynan
- Region (AVA): Napa Valley (Stags Leap District)
- Blend: 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc, 4% Petit Verdot, 1% Merlot
- Vintage production: 863 cases
- Winery location: Stags Leap District
- Owners: Cliff Lede
- First vintage: 2001
- Drinking window: 2024-2044
About The Wine:
The Poetry Vineyard, carved into a steep west-facing hillside, reaches from the highest elevations of the Stags Leap District appellation to the valley floor. This vineyard draws its uniqueness from shallow, volcanic soils atop fractured shale. Due to the stressful nature of the site, planted with high vine density and farmed to very low yields, the vines develop slowly and produce small flavourful berries.
Vintners won’t soon forget the 2017 vintage in Napa Valley. A wet winter provided welcome relief from a prolonged drought that began with the 2012 vintage. Spring arrived early, bringing with it warm weather and soaking rains that segued to an early budbreak and the development of beautiful canopies. The season trended warm and was punctuated with a series of heat waves, the most dramatic one over Labor Day weekend. The well-developed and meticulously manicured canopies, along with strategically placed shade cloth, protected the natural acidity and delicate fruit flavors during the warm spells. All of the fruit was harvested well ahead of the fires and the resulting wines are laden with lively fruit flavours and voluptuous body.
In the cool darkness of night, grapes were hand-picked into twenty-five pound bins to minimize crushing. By early morning, the grapes were subjected to rigorous selection by a three-tiered sorting process, which includes a cutting edge optical sorter and a slow, individual berry hand sort.
The fruit was gently gravity-delivered to small tanks by our unique crane system, which kept the berries intact. Cold soaks lasted from five to eight days, and fermentations were managed through a combination of pump overs and délestage. Extended maceration of up to six weeks ensured exceptional extraction and fine-tuning of tannin profiles.
Following twenty-one months of élevage in French oak barrels, 82% of which were new, the blend was selected from our best lots of the Poetry Vineyard.
Cliff Lede Poetry Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 MAGNUM
“The flagship is the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Poetry, which is based on 88% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc, 4% Petit Verdot, and the balance Merlot. Straight-up awesome notes of black raspberries, blueberries, smoked tobacco, violets, spice box, and gravelly earth as well as a bloody, meaty character all emerge from this magical wine. With full-bodied richness, ultra-fine tannins, flawless balance, and a great, great finish, it doesn't have the sheer opulence of the 2016 or 2015 yet shows a more classical, elegant, style that still packs ample richness and depth. It needs 4-5 years of bottle age and will keep for 20 years or more. It's a candidate for the wine of the vintage and is an incredible achievement for this team. Bravo."
99 points, Jeb Dunnuck (Jan. 2020)