While famous for its Cabernet Sauvignon, Stags’ Leap Winery has also gained high acclaim for its Petite Sirah. The intriguing varietal was planted on the property before the winery was established in 1893, and today it remains an essential part of the Estate’s winemaking legacy. Petite Sirah has become synonymous with Stags’ Leap and for decades has cultivated devote fans of the winery.
NE CEDE MALIS (pronounced Ne KAY Day Mah LEES) comes from the Latin phrase “Don’t give in to misfortune,” the family motto of Stags’ Leap founder Horace Chase.
“Stags’ Leap has always had a great reputation for its Petite Sirahs. A prodigious Petite Sirah, their 2012 Petite Sirah Estate Ne Cede Malis is a blend of 85% Petite Sirah and 15% Mixed Blacks aged 12 months in 25% new American oak. There are 900 cases of this massive, blockbuster, full-throttle wine from some of the oldest vines on the estate. (One parcel of Petite Sirah was planted in 1929.) Opaque purple, with notes of pen ink, graphite, blueberry and blackberry liqueur, an amazingly concentrated, full-bodied mouthfeel, and stunning purity and depth, this is a wine for 30-40 years of cellaring. It is a killer effort.” - Robert Parker, March 3, 2016
“There are aromas of green peppercorn, black olive, black tea and anise. There are flavors of Turkish coffee, dark chocolate, blueberry compote, anise and cassis in a mineral driven style. Rich and viscous, this will have a long life in the cellar.” - Owen Bargreen, November 2015
“From a consistently fine producer of the variety, this classic version is blended with 15% other varieties and aged for a year in entirely American oak, 25% of it new. Viscous and black in color, it's surprisingly vibrant on the palate, offering just-ripe blackberry and mocha around a cradle of nuanced acidity and peppery spice.” - Virginie Boone, June 2016
A Petite Sirah-based field blend, Ne Cede Malis always delivers a one-of-a-kind tasting experience each vintage. Rich and nuanced, the 2012 is immense in blackberry, currant and black cherry with notes of licorice, black ground peppercorn and violet. Showcasing all the hallmarks of a great Petite Sirah, the powerful, yet strikingly elegant tannins are telling of this wine’s graceful aging potential for years to come.
Sourced from the oldest block on our Estate with vines planted in 1929, the wine is predominantly Petite Sirah, though it includes at least 16 other varietals in small amounts. Year after year this gracefully aging vineyard produces a small lot of wine – a truly unique field blend that simply could not be produced anywhere else.
The 2012 vintage will be remembered for its abundance of high-quality fruit. The season began with exceptional, moderate weather that brought virtually no harm to the grapes all the way through fruit-set, and the long, mild days continued well into the summer. A cooler-than-normal period hit at the end of September, which allowed for the preservation of ideal fruit aromatics, freshness and natural acidity.
Taking a minimalist approach Winemaker Christophe Paubert likes to say that he “guides” rather than “makes” Ne Cede Malis. The carefully tended head trained vines in this 5-acre plot include Petite Sirah, Carignane, Mourvedre, Grenache, Peloursin, Syrah and even Muscat and Sauvignon Blanc among others. After hand picking, the grapes were co-fermented, undergoing a short maceration prior to aging in American oak barrels (25% new) for 12 months. The oak’s spiciness, which could overwhelm a delicate wine, is easily handled by and helps enhance the strength and depth of this powerful varietal.
Varietal Composition: 85% Petite Sirah, 15% Other Varietals