Shafer's famous Hillside Select Cabernet, one of California's legendary Cabs - extremely limited.
98+ Points Jeb Dunnuck: "In the running for the wine of the vintage, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is an incredible success and offers more depth, opulence, and purity than just about every other wine out there. Revealing a dense purple color as well as a killer nose of blueberries, chocolate-covered cherries, scorched earth, tobacco, violets, and exotic spices, it hits the palate with full-bodied richness, a seamless, pure, incredibly layered mouthfeel, building tannins, and a great, great finish. As with most top 2017s, it stays tight and compact on the palate, with notable structure and impressive concentration. It has some up-front appeal given its purity of fruit and balance, yet it's going to take 7-8 years to hit prime time and will be a long-lived bottle of Napa Cabernet. Hats off to Doug Shafer and the team for yet another magical Cabernet Sauvignon."
98+ Points Robert Parker: "Made from 100% Cabernet Sauvignon, the 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select displays a deep garnet-purple color, bursting from the glass with scents of blueberry pie, crème de cassis, black cherry compote and chocolate box plus nuances of cedar chest, clove oil, lavender and menthol. The richly fruited, full-bodied palate has a lively skip in its step, featuring gorgeous ripe, velvety tannins and fantastic freshness to support all the spicy black fruit layers, finishing long and perfumed. An absolute triumph!"
Shafer’s Hillside Estate Vineyard consists of 54 acres all on steep, amphitheater-like, rocky outcroppings and knolls. It receives the full benefit of southeasterly sunlight, and enjoys the afternoon breezes that blow up from the San Francisco Bay channel. An unusual geographic feature, this vineyard is basically a box canyon. The top soil is virtually non-existent as the bed roots that go into the white tofu volcanic soil base rarely extend more than 18 inches before hitting bedrock. This no doubt is a significant reason for the intense flavors achieved by the Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon, and why it is able to spend 32 months in 100% new French oak without a woody taste.
Shafer's Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay is one of California's finest examples of this varietal - don't miss it while it's available.
96 Points Jeb Dunnuck: "I've always loved the Chardonnay from this team, and their 2019 Chardonnay Red Shoulder Ranch has that classic richer, full-bodied style while staying balanced and light on its feet. Buttered lemons, tangerines, green almond, and toasty notes all make an appearance, and it's incredibly textured, with nicely integrated acidity and one heck of a finish. This powerful Chardonnay is going to impress right out of the gate."
94 Points Antonio Galloni (Vinous): "The 2019 Chardonnay Red Shoulder Ranch is a beautiful wine. Soft, creamy and layered in the glass, the 2019 possesses superb balance from the outset. Lees stirring brings out creaminess and resonance, yet the 2019 retains terrific energy to match its mid-weight personality. This is very nicely done. "
“…one of the best non-malolactic, barrel-fermented Chardonnays in California …”
The Wine Advocate
New release of Shafer's new TD-9 Proprietary Red that replaces the Shafer Merlot. This is a stunning new red from Shafer's estate vineyards.
The Shafer 2018 TD-9 Napa Valley has vibrant, complex aromas of ripe red and black fruit, lavender, and herbs fill the glass followed by pure, energetic flavors of dried cherry, blackberry, strawberry, licorice, and cocoa all pulled together with wet slate minerality, clean acidity, and the ripe, seamless tannins that are the hallmarks of this vintage. 56% Merlot, 28% Cabernet Sauvignon, 16% Malbec.
Limited new release from Shafer!
95 Points Jeb Dunnuck: "Not yet bottled, the 2017 Relentless includes slightly more Petite Sirah (14%) than the 2016 and has a slightly fresher, more elegant style as well as sunny notes of blackberries, raspberries, cassis, ground pepper, and flowers. Full-bodied, with silky tannins, ample fruit, and a great finish, it’s another impressive vintage for this cuvée."
94 Points Antonio Galloni: " The freakish vintage notwithstanding, the 2017 Relentless retains its personality. Rich, ample and exotically ripe, the 2017 builds effortlessly in the glass, with superb textural richness and fabulous balance. It is one of the more convincing 2017s I tasted at Shafer this fall. Best of all, the 2017 should drink well upon release, as it is already quite harmonious."
94 Points Wine Spectator: "Deep and powerfully built, with a rich and polished texture that highlights wild berry and blueberry flavors that show notes of espresso, smoky beef and black pepper. Finishes with big but refined tannins. Syrah and Petite Sirah. Drink now through 2030. "
Robert Parker: "...Year in year out, this is one of the superstar wineries, not only in Napa Valley and all of California, but in the entire world. It’s the product of visionary John Shafer, who started in 1978 after a successful corporate career. He had the foresight and visionary genius to believe in the microclimates and soils of Stags Leap of the southern Napa Valley. When his son Doug came on board with their brilliant winemaker and Mr. Everything, Elias Fernandez, things soared in quality and diversity. Today, this is a winery that does everything about as perfect as can be."