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Marcus Notaro (2015)

Stag's Leap Wine Cellars

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The Main Line Wine Gala is honored to welcome Marcus Notaro of Stag's Leap Wine Cellars as its 2015 honorary chair.

Marcus Notaro was named winemaker for Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in 2013, bringing with him close to two decades of expertise and passion for producing world-class Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines. Marcus had been the winemaker for Col Solare, a prestigious winery located in the Red Mountain appellation of Washington State. Like Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, Col Solare is a partnership between Ste. Michelle Wine Estates and Marchesi Antinori of Italy.

On May 24, 1976, Stags Leap Wine Cellars changed the world of wine forever. The tasting was blind, with the identities of the wines concealed until the votes were tallied. The unthinkable happened. The 1973 Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars S.L.V. Cabernet Sauvignon, made from a vine three years old, was judged the best. The Cabernet ranked higher than four top Bordeaux, including first-growths Château Mouton-Rothschild and Château Haut-Brion. The Wall Street Journal called the tasting “a vinous shot heard round the world," catapulting California Wines onto the world stage. At the 2015 Main Line Wine Gala, Marcus will be presenting S.L.V. as well as Cask 23, Fay and other rare wines.

Marcus has been making red wines in Washington since 1995 and was drawn to the Col Solare vision of creating a top Cabernet Sauvignon-based blend from Washington’s finest fruit. Since 2003, Marcus has been honing a style of Cabernet Sauvignon that unites old world and new world traditions and innovations, much the way Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars has always done. It is his understanding of the Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars signature wine style – one of elegance and balance, ripeness and restraint – as well as his ability to express both the terroir of the vineyard and the true varietal character of the grape, that make him ideally suited for continuing the winemaking legacy at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars – and the iconic estate vineyards.

“Everything begins in the vineyard and then it all comes together in the cellar," Marcus said. "You need to do what the vineyard and the vintage tell you.”

As winemaker at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, Marcus manages the winemaking process from grape to bottle, working with vineyard managers and growers, overseeing winemaking regimes and carrying out blending trials. He also works with Marchesi Antinori Chief Enologist Renzo Cotarella and Ste. Michelle Wine Estates Senior Vice President of Winemaking and Vineyard Operations Doug Gore to evaluate final blends of each vintage.