95 Points - Wine Advocate
“The 2015 The Leap Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley is made up of 92% Cabernet Sauvignon with 6% Petite Sirah and 2% Petit Verdot aged in 50% new French oak for 20 months. It has a very deep garnet-purple color and reveals notions of crème de cassis, Black Forest cake and redcurrant jelly with suggestions of camphor, forest floor, pencil lead and cigar boxes with a touch of rose hip tea. The palate is full-bodied with a firm, grainy backbone and loads of red fruit sparks lifting the rich, black fruit layers to a long invigorating finish.” - Lisa Perrotti-Brown, October 29, 2018
Our 2015 The Leap Cabernet Sauvignon captures the distinctive personality of our estate vineyard and the outstanding vintage, which crafted a wine of deep color intensity, a multilayered mouthfeel and deep, pure, richness. This wine is classic Stags Leap District Cabernet, offering blackberry and black cherry aromas on the nose, along with subtle sweet baking spice and savory notes from the beautiful oak integration. On the palate, there is elegance, balance and complexity, showing ripe juicy blackberry, black cherry and black plum. On the incredibly lengthy finish, you find hints of chocolate, dark cocoa, mocha and black pepper spice. With fine grained mouth-pleasing tannins, this Cabernet exhibits the iconic power and intensity that have become synonymous with Stags’ Leap estate wines and drinks beautifully, representing the opulence and grace of the estate.
Cabernet Sauvignon is synonymous with Napa Valley and has always been a mainstay in the winemaking program at Stags’ Leap Winery. The Leap is sourced from select Cabernet Sauvignon blocks within our Stags’ Leap Winery estate vineyard that are twenty-five years old, on average. This singular expanse of earth tucked up against the eastern palisades of Napa Valley features thin, rocky soils in its upper reaches, giving way to finer-grained loamy soils at its floor. The heat-reflecting palisades, with their towering rocky crags, provide consistent warmth over the estate and help balance the cooling breezes from the south. This pronounced micro-climate is remarkably well-suited to growing Cabernet Sauvignon grapes of distinction.
After three years of plentiful harvests, the 2015 vintage resulted in a less abundant crop, but the quality remained exceptional. The mild, dry spring conditions promoted an early bud-break and minimal heat during summer allowed the fruit to ripen at a steady pace through picking, which began a few days earlier than 2014. The drier-than-normal conditions contributed to the smaller berry size and low yields, resulting in wines with outstanding concentration and flavor, making the overall season ideal for producing Cabernet Sauvignon of wonderful quality.
The Leap is a barrel selection, a blend of the best Cabernet Sauvignon blocks, lots and cooperages in a given vintage. Each lot was held separately in French oak barrels (50% new) for 20 months before Winemaker Christophe Paubert hand selected the most expressive of them to blend just prior to bottling. Keeping each block separate allows close monitoring of each individual lot through aging, maximizing the depth and potential of the estate vineyards. Additionally, the lots undergo a long, (almost month-long), maceration period which adds color, tannin and complexity of flavors to the Cabernet Sauvignon.
Varietal Composition: 92% Cabernet Sauvignon, 6% Petite Sirah, 2% Petit Verdot
Cases Produced: 3,700