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Flat front label of wine
Flat front label of wine

Cliff Lede Poetry Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon 2001

Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley, California
  • WE94
  • WS91
  • CG90
14.5% ABV
  • RP98
  • RP95
  • RP100
  • JS94
  • RP98
  • RP94
  • WS93
  • RP93
  • RP96
  • W&S93
  • RP94
  • RP95
  • WS91
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Beautiful bottle-aged aromas are revealing themselves: forest floor, sweet tobacco, and leather. There are still hints of the primary blue and black fruits in the mouth framing a classic structure. The 2001 Poetry is really starting to peak at this point. Expect significant amounts of tartrates. Decanting is suggested.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 94
Wine Enthusiast
A stunning wine that shows off the excellence of its origin and the vintage. Long and deep in cherry, currant and mocha, with a round, creamy texture and plenty of smoky oak. The spicy finish lasts for a long time. So polished and delicious, it’s hard to resist now, but will age gracefully for many years. Note, though, that the Cliff Lede name appears only on the back of the label.
WS 91
Wine Spectator
A graceful wine, with an open-knit texture and supple plum, currant and blackberry fruit that turns elegant and polished, gaining complexity and nuance on the finish, where it picks up an earthy edge.
CG 90
Connoisseurs' Guide
A fairly direct and accessible wine that shows equal parts of both cherries and sweet, creamy oak, this supple and nicely polished young Cabernet may not aim for the stars, but it is fruity and friendly and comes with a nice sense of charm. In contrast to some of its bigger and brawnier cousins, it avoids any untoward toughness, and its slight trim of tannin should soften out nicely with only a few years of age.
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Cliff Lede

Cliff Lede Vineyards

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Cliff Lede Vineyards, Napa Valley, California
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Established in 2002, Cliff Lede Vineyards encompasses 60 acres in the famed Stags Leap District of Napa Valley. Owner Cliff Lede, viticulturist David Abreu, winemaker Kale Anderson and consulting winemaker Philippe Melka have come together to form an unrivalled team, making the most of this remarkable property. Their state-of-the-art gravity-flow winery boasts a berry-by-berry sorting system and conical tanks commissioned using a design inspired by the tanks of Chateau Latour. One tank per vineyard block ensures each lot evolves at its own pace and acres of caves with single-layer barrel storage ensure access to each barrel at all times. The winery produces Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet Sauvignon. Their flagship, Poetry Cabernet Sauvignon, is crafted from the steep hillside portion of the estate.

Napa Valley

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One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production as well as tourism, the Napa Valley was responsible for bringing worldwide recognition to California winemaking. In the 1960's, a few key wine families settled the area and hedged their bets on the valley's world-class winemaking potential—and they were right.

The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980's, when producers scooped up vineyard lands and planted vines throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, and today Napa is home to hundreds of producers ranging from boutique to corporate. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Napa whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.

Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that claim specific characteristics based on situation, slope and soil. Farthest south and coolest from the influence of the San Pablo Bay is Carneros, followed by Coombsville to its northeast and then Yountville, Oakville and Rutherford. Above those is the warm St. Helena and the valley's newest and hottest AVA, Calistoga. These areas follow the valley floor and are known generally for creating rich, dense, complex and smooth reds with good aging potential. The mountain sub appellations, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs, include Stags Leap District, Atlas Peak, Chiles Valley (farther east), Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain District and Diamond Mountain District. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from a lot of time in the bottle to evolve and soften.

Cabernet Sauvignon

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A noble variety bestowed with both power and concentration, Cabernet Sauvignon is now the world's most planted grape variety. Inherently high in tannins and acidity, the best bottlings of Cabernet can age beautifully, with the ability to last fifty years or more. Cabernet Sauvignon flourishes in temperate climates like Bordeaux's Medoc region and forms the base of the Medoc reds, which are typically mostly Cabernet with Merlot and smaller amounts of some combination of Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot. (Enjoying a great deal of success in various regions around the world, this blend is now globally referred to as a Bordeaux Blend.) Cabernet Sauvignon has enjoyed great success throughout the world, particularly in the Napa Valley, and is responsible for some of the world’s most prestigious and sought-after “cult” wines.

In the Glass

High in color, tannin and extract, Cabernet Sauvignon expresses notes of blackberry, cassis, plum, currant, spice and tobacco. In Bordeaux and elsewhere in the Old World you'll find the more earthy, tannic side of Cabernet, where it is typically blended to soften tannins and add complexity. In warmer regions like California Washington, Argentina, Chile and Australia, you can typically expect more ripe fruit flavors upfront.

Perfect Pairings

Cabernet Sauvignon is right at home with rich, intense meat dishes—beef, lamb and venison, in particular—where its opulent fruit and decisive tannins make an equal match to the dense protein of the meat. With a mature Cabernet, opt for tender, slow-cooked meat dishes.

Sommelier Secrets

Despite the modern importance and ubiquity of Cabernet Sauvignon, it is actually a relatively young variety. In 1997, DNA profiling revealed the grape to be a spontaneous crossing of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc which took place in 17th century southwestern France.

JMNPOETRY_2001 Item# 120992