2010 Shafer "Relentless" Napa Valley Syrah

SKU #1139181 97 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The extraordinary 2010 Relentless (96% Syrah and 4% Petite Sirah) offers up notes of graphite, subtle wood charcoal, barbecue smoke, blackberry, blueberry and raspberry fruit, and hints of spice and meat. This full-bodied, supple-textured, exceptionally rich Syrah already has a certain accessibility, but should age well for two decades. (RP)  (10/2013)

95 points Wine Spectator

 Firm, rich and dense, this combines power with finesse, offering a deep mix of chewy dark berry, dark chocolate, black licorice, road tar, tobacco and loamy earth flavors, tightly wound and leading to a long finish. *Top 100 Wines of 2013* (JL)  (11/2013)

93 points Vinous

 Shafer's 2010 Relentless bursts from the glass with super-ripe dark purple/blue fruit, cloves, leather, mint and white flowers. The 2010 is a deep, fruit-driven wine endowed with superb texture and gorgeous depth, but a bit less in the way of varietal nuance. Layers of fruit continue to build through to the huge, voluptuous finish. I have no doubt the 2010 will be a crowd pleaser, as it is delicious. Still, it would be great to see a little more Syrah personality. The 2010 is 96% Syrah and 4% Petite Sirah. (AG)  (11/2013)

92 points Wine Enthusiast

 A blend of Syrah and Petite Sirah, Shafer’s Relentless is a testament to the winery’s commitment to these varieties despite their domination of the Cab market. The wine shows the huge power and balance of Shafer’s Cabernets, with a different flavor profile. It’s soft and gentle but complex in ripe tannins, with blackberry, cherry, cassis, cola, red licorice, sweet tobacco and rich Asian spice flavors.  (3/2008)

91 points Connoisseurs Guide

 Bound to be a bette noire to those who abhor wines of uncompromising ripeness and sheer size, this year's Shafer Relentless is as always an intense and deeply draughted wine of immense volume and extract. It is brimming with ripe-berry fruit with lavish oak apparent at every turn, yet while never a prim and pretty wine, neither is it so tough as to be out of bounds. Only fans of unbridled power would think to pull its cork now for it is one very much meant for the cellar and comes with a decade-plus of potential. *Two Stars*  (11/2013)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Saturated full ruby. Pungent, expressive aromas of blackberry, minerals, spices and game. Densely packed, concentrated and sweet, showing very good energy to its dark berry and licorice flavors. Finishes with sweet tannins and lovely length. Wears its high alcohol gracefully and comes across as a bit more serious than the equally strong 2009 bottling. (ST)  (6/2014)

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Price: $109.99
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- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.

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.


- 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.
Alcohol Content (%): 15.8