Shafer “Hillside Select” Cabernet Sauvignon 2015 [6/cs]

shafer hillside select
California Napa Valley
Cabernet and Cabernet Blends
Type: Red Table Wine
Vintage: 2015

“Shafer’s flagship wine, and one of the world’s greatest Cabernet Sauvignons, is the Hillside Select, which comes from the rocky, volcanic soils on hillsides above the winery. Vineyard production is small, and the wine is an incredible example of Cabernet Sauvignon.”

Robert Parker on Shafer’s Hillside Select, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Oct 2016

 

“From the early nineties on, especially starting around 1994, the quality of [Shafer’s] wines soared to first-growth standards, and have remained there for the last twenty plus years. In fact, one can argue that no wine produced in the world over that twenty plus year period of time has scored as consistently highly as the Shafer Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon. Keep in mind, this is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from their Stags Leap hillside vineyard that is aged 32 months in 100% new French oak, and from the early nineties on, most vintages have at least 25-50 years of aging potential.”

Robert Parker on Shafer’s Hillside Select, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Dec 2014

 

Shafer’s signature wine, Hillside Select, is made entirely from the best lots of Cabernet Sauvignon grown on  the winery’s hillside estate vineyards in Stags Leap District. The hillside fruit is small and deeply coloured. A reserve wine of limited production, it is undeniably a wine of place, exemplifying the rich, concentrated flavours and velvety texture of Stags Leap District fruit. Aged a full four years  (32 months in French oak) prior to release, it is a collector’s wine.

 

“Very deep purple-black in colour, the 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select comes bounding out of the glass with gregarious scents of crème de cassis, warm black cherries, plum preserves and Indian spices with hints of lilacs, garrigue, stewed tea and cigar box plus a waft of charcuterie. Full-bodied, rich, boldly fruited and wildly decadent, it has a rock-solid frame of grainy tannins and compelling freshness, finishing with loads of earthy and savoury layers.”

98+ points, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, Oct 2018

 

“There’s an intensely ripe, fresh and vibrant edge to this focused, elegant and assertively pure Cabernet that delivers attractive blueberry and cassis aromas in stylish form. The palate arrives as a precise and focused suite of ripe blueberry and blackberry flavours, building smoothly to an attractively crisp and even-paced finish. Another superb edition of this wine. Drink or hold.”

98 points, JamesSuckling.com, Dec 2018

 

“I was able to taste four vintages of the estate’s flagship Cabernet Sauvignon, their Hillside Select. This first growth-like cuvée was first made in 1978 and always comes from their estate Hillside Vineyard just above their estate in Stags Leap. This is a 54-acre south-facing, amphitheater-like vineyard of thin, rocky, volcanic soils. Today the cuvée is always 100% Cabernet Sauvignon that spends upwards of 32 months in new French oak. It is consistently one of the greatest Cabernet Sauvignons in the world. Starting with their 2015 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select, it boasts a deep, saturated purple hue as well as a heavenly bouquet of sweet blueberry and cassis fruits interwoven with plenty of graphite, tobacco, and lead pencil notes, with ample minerality emerging with time in the glass. This was a hot, low-yielding vintage for Napa, and while this beauty is massively concentrated, it’s also silky and seamless, with great tannins, no sense of over-ripeness or heaviness, and a finish that goes on for nearly a minute. This is a brilliant, incredibly sexy wine to enjoy over the coming 30-40 years. 2020-2060.”

98 points, Jeb Dunnuck.com, Jan 2020