Localization: Napa Valley, California, USA
Tasting Notes: This ideal vintage has produced a Relentless that balances richness and vivacity. There’s heft and structure along with mouth-coating flavors that go on and on. Uncork this bottle and you’ll find layers of blackberry compote, red and black spice, dried black fruit, black tea, tobacco, and earthiness. All this liquid midnight comes with an undercarriage of ripe tannin that promises much more beauty and opulence in the decades ahead.
98 points Jeb Dunnuck: A blend of 94% Syrah and 6% Petite Sirah, the 2018 Relentless looks to be just about sensational, offering a dense purple color as well as rich, loaded notes of blackberries, currants, smoked meats, peppery spice, and violets. Reminding me of a great Cornas on steroids with its gamy, exotic character paired with beautiful richness, it has fabulous purity, ripe, polished tannins, and a great finish. This will undoubtedly be a great vintage for this cuvée, and my money is on it being one of the best yet.
The Domain: Shafer Vineyards has produced classic Napa Valley wines for more than 40 years.
Shafer’s wines, including its signature Cabernet Sauvignon, Hillside Select, are found in collectors’ cellars and on wine lists in top luxury hotels and restaurants throughout the world.
The vineyard and cellar teams, led by winemaker Elias Fernandez, cultivate more than 200 acres of Shafer-owned vineyards, sources for the winery's celebrated Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay, TD-9, One Point Five, Relentless, and Hillside Select.
The winery has a decades-long commitment to sustainability. Beginning in the 1980s Shafer embraced farming techniques that eliminate insecticides and herbicides, and carefully conserve water resources. In 2004 Shafer became the first winery in the U.S. to go 100% solar.