2006 Shafer "Hillside Select" Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon

SKU #1060104 96 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 2006 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select, which was just released, is a stunningly rich effort displaying notes of licorice, cassis, camphor and subtle toast along with a full-bodied, powerful texture and richness. Very pure with surprisingly sweet tannins for a 2006, it’s long finish lasts over 40 seconds. It should drink well for 25+ years. (RP)  (12/ 2010)

95 points Connoisseurs Guide

 *Three stars* Among the deepest, most complete Cabernets that we have yet encountered from 2006, Shafer's latest tête de cuvee wins high praise for both concentration and keen focus. Its plentiful blackcurrant fruit dovetails perfectly with its equally generous oak, and it flavors build and build en route a long and wonderfully sustained finish. There is great scale and substance about this one, yet the wine manages to avoid being too much, and it will age famously for ten years or more on the strength of its exceptional balance.  (4/ 2011)

95 points James Suckling

 Bay leaf, dark fruits, and almonds on the nose. This wine is powerful, with a full body, and with flavors of mineral, mint, and lead pencil. I'm thinking Pauillac but tasting California. A very long finish, but needs some time. Be patient with this and wait until 2014.  (2/ 2011)

94 points Wine & Spirits

 Like the best vintages of Hillside Select, this wine has tremendous structural power that remains almost imperceptible. On the surface, the tannins are pillowy soft, their supple richness surrounding a core of dark fruit. The wine is black but not hyperextracted—the layers of dark chocolate flavor seem to come from the soil rather than from oak.  (12/ 2010)

93 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Saturated bright ruby. Rich aromas of dark berries, candied cherry, smoke and tobacco. Sweet, lush and deep, with good clarity and lift in spite of its very ripe, thick texture. Black raspberry and dark cherry flavors are complicated by brown spices. A very sexy and pliant wine that finishes with sophisticated tannins. This already gives great pleasure, even if it doesn't offer quite the fireworks of the best recent vintages.  (12/ 2008)

92 points Wine Enthusiast

 Young, tannic and juicy, filled with sweet blackberry, cherry and cassis flavors, and well oaked, having been aged in 100% new French barrels. Those are the raw facts. The wine itself shows the pedigree of this fine estate, and will no doubt pick up bottle nuances over the years. But it seems to lack the precision of the great 2001, 2003 and 2004 vintages. Try after 2012.  (4/ 2011)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Complex and balanced, in a medium- to full-bodied and delicate manner, with floral, red berry and plum flavors shaded by a touch of mineral and graphite and ending with tannins that display a cedary, woodsy, charry roasted herb edge. Drink now through 2020.  (12/ 2010)

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Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

United States

- When people consider domestic wine, they normally think about the state of California. The fine viticultural Region within California, including the Napa Valley, Sonoma, Santa Cruz Mountains, Mendocino and Santa Barbara, are capable of growing grapes of world-class quality. But there's plenty of fabulous wine coming from other states, too. Oregon, Washington and New York are also causing eyebrows (and glassware) to be raised around the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from the United States.
Sub-Region:

California

- With the explosive growth that California's wine industry has seen the past several years, it's easy to view winemaking and grape growing in the Golden State as a recent phenomenon. And while it's true that California's viticultural history is brief compared to several European countries, this state's roots date back well over 200 years. Due to the enormous response to California wine within the United States and worldwide, there are thousands of excellent and diverse wines being produced within the state each year. For our entire selection of California wines, please visit this link.
Specific Appellation:

Napa Valley

- America's most famous wine region, which encompasses a varied geographical territory running about 20 miles long from the San Francisco Bay northward to the foot of Mount St. Helena. Napa's great diversity, both in terms of climate and terroir, has led to the creation of a number of smaller AVAs like Stags Leap District, Rutherford, Howell Mountain, Oakville and Mount Veeder, among others. Cabernet and chardonnay still reign supreme, but just about everything under the sun is grown in Napa Valley, in quality levels ranging from $2 jug wine to $500 a bottle California cab.