Perhaps one of the most remarkable and well-known American wineries is Shafer Vineyards. The place is a straight-up institution. What’s arguably most remarkable is that the same core staff have been working together, producing these astounding wines for over 40 years. John, his son Doug, and far too humble Elias Fernandez.
Their flagship bottling, the Hillside Select is always one of the very best Cabernets released anywhere in the world. You know darn well that in the 2019 vintage, a spectacular one in Napa, that trend continued.
Treated with four scores of 97 points or more, this is already one of the highest rated wines of the vintage, but the wine is still such a baby and I think has the potential to be even greater in the future. Drawn from selected blocks of Stags Leap District, the fruit here is small and deeply colored, with concentrated flavors and a lot of energy. It’s a big boy for sure, but it’s so rich and velvety too that it really is hard to find a single flaw. This is a very special collector’s item.
Only 6 left in stock
98+ Points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate
“Sourced from specific blocks of estate-grown fruit, the 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is another highly successful vintage. All Cabernet Sauvignon aged 32 months in 100% new French oak, it boasts intense aromas of pencil shavings, dark loam, cassis and plum on the nose, while the palate is full-bodied, super-ripe, rich, dense and concentrated—a truly impressive California vin de garde. Tannic but ripe, it finishes long and firm on the finish, adding a hint of mocha.”
98 Points, James Suckling
A beautiful nose of pitted cherries, redcurrants, fresh herbs and violets. Full-bodied with fine, structured tannins. More gravelly, mineral and dark than the nose lets on. Savory almost. Terrific depth and concentration that keeps the palate flavorful through the generous finish. Chocolate, sage, rosemary, bark and moss. Layered. Superb wine. Needs time to come together. Best after 2024 and onward.
98 Points, Jeb Dunnuck
The 2019 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is another magical vintage for this cuvée. All Cabernet Sauvignon from hillside vineyards on the eastern side of Stags Leap, it offers a vivid purple hue as well as extraordinary notes of cassis, black raspberries, violets, camphor, and spring flowers, with perfectly integrated background oak. Full-bodied but not massive, it’s flawlessly balanced on the palate and has ultra-fine tannins, a seamless, elegant mouthfeel, and a great, great finish. It’s another 30- to 40-year wine from this incredible team that readers will absolutely love.
97 Points, Wine Enthusiast
This broad, rich and mouthfilling wine is Shafer’s most elite and collectible. Aged for 32 months in all-new French oak barrels, it boasts extra-ripe blackberries and blueberries, accents of mint, cedar and graphite, and a big structure of polished tannins.
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2019 WE CS #7
97 Points, James Suckling – 96 Points, Jeb Dunnuck
Their beloved Napa Valley Cabernet comes from a who’s who of the best vineyard sites in Napa. It’s a seamless Cabernet blend sourced from Oakville, Stag’s Leap, Diamond Mountain, St. Helena, Calistoga, Oak Knoll and the winery’s estate fruit in Yountville.