Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars

The Alchemist II
2009 Cabernet Sauvignon
Napa Valley

2011 Offering
Premiere Napa Valley
Auction 15 | Lot No. 21


Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars

The Alchemist II

Cabernet Sauvignon
Napa Valley

20 cases produced

This Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend continues our legacy of producing the best “fire” and “water” terroir-driven wines. This second edition of The Alchemist builds on the tradition of alchemy we first offered at Premiere Napa Valley 2010. Crafted from our historic estate vineyards, this wine represents the alchemy between our FAY and S.L.V. vineyards. Winemaker Nicki Pruss blended Merlot and Petit Verdot with Cabernet Sauvignon to achieve finesse, fruit character, supple tannins and the signature gracefulness for which Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars is known. Although these two vineyards adjoin each other, the wines they produce express different aspects of the terroir. S.L.V. soils are predominantly volcanic in nature and contribute layered structure, concentration and spicy intensity—the “fire” elements. FAY’s soils, more alluvial in makeup, yield the “water” elements of softness, perfume and rich berry qualities.

Aging Process

Aged 24 months in a mix of new and used french oak barrels

Wine Facts

  • Wine is 100% estate grown and bottled

Tasting Chart

bone dry very sweet
light body very full bodied
soft, gentle very crisp
no tannins heavy tannins

Nicki Pruss

Winemaker, Stag's Leap Wine Cellars

Winemaker, Nicki Pruss

Nicki Pruss was on a very different career path when she was sidetracked by a fascination with wine. After graduating from the University of California in Santa Barbara, the native Californian moved to Chicago. There she graduated Cum Laude from the Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine and completed her podiatric surgery residency at Columbus Hospital. She returned home to California as a licensed podiatrist, but in 1995 a 5-month bicycle tour through France, Belgium and Germany changed everything.

She had long been an enthusiastic amateur beer‐maker, but during this European trip she realized that the career she really wanted was in wine. Upon her return to California, Nicki began studying viticulture and winery technology at Napa Valley College and fermenting any grapes she could get her hands on. Professionally, she began as an intern at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in 1998 and since that time moved up the winemaking ranks from Lab Technician, to Enologist, to Assistant Winemaker and Associate Winemaker. She was officially named Winemaker in 2005.

Throughout her tenure at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, she has continued to attend seminars and extension courses at the University of California at Davis and through the Napa Valley Grape Growers, ASEV and the Napa Valley Vintners. Much of her practical winemaking and grape-growing education has occurred on the job, working with and learning from the founder of Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, Renzo Cotarella, Danny Schuster, Jim Lincoln, Michael Silacci and other noted industry professionals. “Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars has been the training ground for many people from around the world,” says Nicki, “and it has been an honor for me to be one of its ‘students.’”

Nicki’s contributions at Stagʹs Leap Wine Cellars have been numerous. She’s been intimately involved with the ARCADIA VINEYARD Chardonnay program since its inception in 1998, helped revitalize the winery’s Sauvignon Blanc program with a style that has been widely successful, and was instrumental in the creation of the ARTEMIS Cabernet program. In addition to crafting the winery’s three Estate Cabernet Sauvignons (FAY, S.L.V., CASK 23) each year, Nicki creates estate red wines that highlight select parcels that are bottled exclusively for the Wine Club. To Nicki, these specialty wines are a way to take club members “on a walk through the vineyard with the winemaker” to experience the unique characteristics that define the winery’s world-class vineyards.

Country born: United States

Education: Certificate in Viticulture and Winery Technology from Napa Valley College, a B.A. in Biological Sciences from UC Santa Barbara, and a Doctor of Podiatric Medicine – Cum Laude from the Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine, Chicago, IL. I am a member of the American Society of Enology and Viticulture, the California Enological Research Association, and the Napa Valley Wine Technical Group. I am also a past Board member of the NVWTG

Years in the wine industry: 10-15 years

Winemaking Philosophy:
Site trumps clone, Mother Nature bats last and I am a grape herder. I keep that in mind while at the same time weaving together the technical aspects of science, the artistry of wine and my gut feeling. I enjoy the creative challenge of working with nature to produce world-class wines with balance,elegance and restraint.

Q&A With the Winemaker

Q: Premiere Napa Valley wines are innovative and allow each winery to showcase the region's sense of exploration in fine winemaking. What kind of exploration did your Premiere Napa Valley wine allow you to do?

A: Building on the traditon of our first PNV Wine in 2010 as Lot #1 and Jeff's chairmanship of the event our winemaker Nicki Pruss decided to create a blend to show the versatility of the estate vineyards at Stag's Leap Wine Cellars.

The Metz Group

2 Woodland Drive
Dallas  PA  18612



Premiere Napa Valley Wine Collection

Winery Vintage Variety Appellation Fanciful Auction
Provenance Vineyards 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford 23
Quixote Winery 2017 Petite Sirah Stags Leap District La Mancha 23
Reynolds Family Winery 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap District 75/25 23
Silverado Vineyards 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap District Heritage Clone 23
Stags' Leap Winery 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap District Audentia 23
Tamber Bey 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville 23
Far Niente 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Oakville 21
PureCru Napa Valley 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Clones, Clones, Clones 21
Stags' Leap Winery 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Stags Leap District 21
William Hill Estate Winery 2015 Red Wine Napa Valley 21
Beaulieu Vineyard 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Georges de Latour Private Reserve 16
Bressler Vineyards 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon St. Helena 16
Black Stallion Estate Winery 2009 Red Wine Napa Valley Heart & Soul 15
Broman Cellars 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley You’ll Think It’s Howell Mountain 15
Newton Vineyard 2009 Red Wine Spring Mountain District Piece of the Puzzle 15
Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley The Alchemist II 15
Trinchero Napa Valley 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Mountain to Mountain Cuvee 15
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