Today is apparently National Rosé Day. In the US? Globally? Who knows?, but I figured it was as good as any day to share a few quick thoughts on the 2018 Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars Elia Rosé from Napa Valley.
Note: This wine was tasted as a sample.
First released in 2015, the Elia Rosé is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon sourced from the legendary Fay Vineyard in the Stags Leap District.
The 2018 vintage is a blend of fruit harvested in early September to make rosé (with six hours of skin contact) and then later fruit harvested in November. Tasting notes don’t clarify if this last batch was made in the saignée style. However, the resulting color of the wine and timing suggest that likely was the case.
Winemaker Marcus Notaro then aged the wine for 5.5 months in combination neutral oak barrels and stainless with 550 cases made.
Medium-plus intensity. A mix of red cherry and ripe raspberries. Around the edges, there is a little mint eucalyptus note that reminds you of its red Fay counterpart.
On the palate, you can definitely feel medium-body weight and phenolics, but the texture is very well done. No bitterness or astringency at all. Again, there is a velvety texture that reminds you of a Stags Leap District Cab. The medium acidity gives some balance of freshness but unfortunately fades with the finish.
This is definitely a unique rosé with a lot of character. It was fun to try as a novelty but, without a doubt, a massive driver of its $44 price is the quality and novelty of its grapes. The Fay Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon averages around $140 a bottle.
You can tell that the SLWC team put a lot of thought and care into crafting a high-end rosé. But, in all honesty, it’s not something that I’d feel compelled to hunt down or pay more than $30 for. There are just too many other great rosés out there for far less.