The majesty of Stags’ Leap Winery astonishes many first-time visitors. Located at the end of a long, private road off the Silverado Trail, the 240-acre estate rests in its own intimate valley, graced with natural beauty, historical buildings, gardens, and a legendary reputation for elegant wines that express their unique terroir.
The terroir is so singular, in fact, that it inspired the formation of the Stags Leap viticultural district in 1989, almost 100 years after the property’s original winery was founded. The soils in this valley within a valley are diverse, yet mainly fall under two categories: volcanic and gravely clay loam. Both soil types are coarse and retain little water, yielding intense fruit and rich wines that show remarkable finesse and intensity.
Winemaker and General Manager Christophe Paubert applies the winemaking philosophy he learned in his native France: showcase the fruit and not the winemaker’s hand. “I believe that wine should express the uniqueness of the land,” Christophe says, “and Stags’ Leap wines have always showcased one of the most distinctive regions in the Napa Valley.”
The focal point of the estate is the old stone Manor House. Built in 1892, the Manor House is the setting for many stories of bootleggers, gangsters, and movie stars including a colorful chapter in the 1920s when the Manor House served as one of the Napa Valley’s most prominent country retreats. After an extensive restoration, the Manor House has recently been renewed to its former glory.
Advance appointments are required for those wishing to visit Stags’ Leap, but those who make them are well rewarded. Guests may book the intimate 90-minute Estate Tour and Tasting that explores the history of the property, its unique terroir, and its superlative wines. For those desiring the ultimate Stags’ Leap experience, a suite of different private tasting experiences are offered including the Ne Cede Malis Vineyard Tour and Tasting and a Library Tasting featuring a flight of wines pulled from the winemaker’s cellar.
For more information, please visit: stagsleap.com