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2004 Shafer Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select

  • 99 WA
  • 94 WS
  • 94 IWC
  • Variety
    Cabernet Sauvignon
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SKU: 59032-2004

This item is available by the case only


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  • International Wine Cellar | Rating: 94

    Good full medium ruby. Roasted, liqueur-like nose displays the warmth of the vintage. Massive, broad and very ripe but less delineated and taut than the 2003. Intensely flavored but doesn't yet come alive. The reticent flavors of blackcurrant and mint come across as rather disjointed today. Finishes with somewhat aggressive tannins. Slated for bottling in May, this was in an awkward stage at the time of my tasting.
    Author: Stephen Tanzer
    Issue: May/June 2007
  • Wine Spectator | Rating: 94

    Pure, rich, intense and vibrant, with tight, sharply focused, vivid black cherry, blackberry and black currant fruit that has a nice dusty, loamy edge and ends with a pleasant burst of ripe fruit flavors that are long and persistent.
    Author: James Laube
  • Wine Advocate | Rating: 99

    This vintage shocked me when I did my retrospective earlier this year, and the 2004 Shafer Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select acquitted itself brilliantly in the vertical of Hillside Selects. It was a hot year, a relatively early harvest and there were worries that the heat had stressed the grapes, and there would be a lack of physiological ripeness and nuance. Those worries have not manifested themselves in this great Cabernet Sauvignon. Inky/purple-colored with notes of blueberry, blackberry, cassis, spring flowers, and a touch of toast, the wine is opulent, voluptuous and full-bodied with sweet tannin, just enough acidity to provide freshness, vibrancy and delineation, and a spectacular finish that goes on 40+ seconds. This is a killer, a showy and flamboyant style of Hillside Select that's already drinking beautifully and should continue to do so for another 15-20 years.
    Author: Robert Parker
  • Self | Rating: 96

    Author: BoxsterVino
  • Self | Rating: 96

    Author: G
  • Self | Rating: 96

    amazing balance and the silkiest of tannins
    Author: Mcaz
  • Self | Rating: 94

    Lovely, plush and rich from beginning sip to finish. Needs a bit more time to reach its apogee, but compelling now.
    Drink Dates: 2017-2030
    Author: afikes
  • Self | Rating: 94

    Still a young wine with deep ruby color and forward fruit nose. The tannin/fruit balance is perfect. I wish I had waited longer to open it as it will last for decades.
    Drink Dates: 2014-2030
    Author: Charles M71
  • Self | Rating:

    The Best!
    Author: Brad 007
  • Self | Rating: 97

    The Hillside Select is always one of my favorite wines. Amazingly well balanced for a wine with this level concentration. Love the finish that sails on and on.....
    Author: KMS
  • Self | Rating: 95

    Wow, big and structured with cassis, black currant and some oak.
    Author: Maxcontinuous
John Shafer began working and replanting steep, rocky vineyards in Napa Valley's Stags Leap District in 1972, and has since built Shafer into one of the most sought-after labels from Napa. John, his son Doug, and winemaker Elias Fernandez call themselves farmers, and are proud of it. Doug took over the vineyards in 1989, and within a year began to integrate organic techniques into his vineyards while the term "organic" still elicited sideways looks. "My soils were getting tired," Doug says. "They had been farmed since 1922." He installed solar panels in 2004, and now enjoys watching his batteries send power back to the grid. Elias was hired by Shafer in 1984 and named winemaker in 1994. Shafer Hillside Select is a benchmark wine of the Stag's Leap District, with a string of awards too long to list. Aged a full four years prior to release, it is, in the words of Robert Parker, "One of the world's, as well as Napa's, most profound Cabernet Sauvignons."

Click here to listen to GrapeRadio's podcast about Shafer (Show #93, 32:01 min 15 MB)

California is the heartland of wine production in the US, and the state that brought prestige to American wine thanks to the pioneers who built early wineries like Staglin, Beringer, Ridge, Mayacamas and Chateau Montelena in the 1800s. Its large geographic area ensures a great diversity in growing sites, varieties grown, and quality levels. Generalizations about the state's wines have numerous exceptions; however, a few key facts generally hold true—ample sunshine, dry weather during the growing season, and moderate winters prevail. Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon continue to dominate the state's production—albeit in continually smaller percentages, as growers continue to diversify. More than 100 different varieties can be found throughout the state.

Collector Data For This Wine

  • 2074 bottles owned
  • 413 collectors
  • Average collector rating: 95
    (Out of 413 collectors)