2000 Shafer "Hillside Select" Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon
A mouthful, this wine gushes with pure, ripe Cabernet fruit. Tiers of currant, anise, blackberry, cherry and wild berry flavors are supported by pretty mocha-scented oak and plush, velvety tannins that firm up on the finish, giving it a solid backbone, yet the persistent flavors keep pushing through. (JL)
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2000 Shafer Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is another beautiful vintage from a challenging year. The brilliant winemaking and great terroir of the Hillside Select overcame the vintage deficiencies. A touch of herbaceousness is a rarity in a Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon, but one can taste it in the 2000. It adds complexity as opposed to any distraction. Somewhat similar in style to the 1993, with a certain austerity, but deep, tarry red and black currant fruit and plush medium to full-bodied texture, this wine seems to have reached full maturity, where is should be drunk up over the next 5-10 years. (RP)
**Two Stars** As always it seems, Shafer's flagship Cabernet is a swaggering study in ripeness and maximum extract, and, even in this vintage noted for relative lightness, the wine again comes through true to form. Intensely aromatic with a wide-ranging mix of chocolate, dried berries, black olive and briar, it is a wine with little sense of restraint in the mouth. Very full-bodied and almost meaty in feel, it is driven by ripeness and oak but shows surprising layering to its full-blown flavors. At least five years of patience is clearly a must, but its better prognosis calls for ten years of age.
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Ruby-red. Deep, slightly medicinal aromas of black cherry, mocha and menthol. Smooth and round on the palate, with noteworthy sweetness and texture for the vintage. Coolish flavors of black cherry, currant and tobacco. This can't match the best recent vintages of this bottling for depth and flavor authority, but it neatly avoids the green cast and drying tannins of so many 2000 Napa Valley cabernets. (ST)