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Professional Ratings: 96 Wine Spectator, 95 The Wine Advocate, 94 Tasting Panel, 92 International Wine Cellar
Region: Napa Valley, California
Other Info: Collectible Wines
Style: Big & Bold
Alcohol By Volume: 15.6%
Item no. 113515
#1 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2012
The 2008 is like midnight in a glass. With abundant aromas and flavors of juicy purple fruit, smoked meat, spice, smoke, black plums and berry, it hugs the line between extract and elegance. In the mouth it's full and seamless from first taste through the long finish.
The best Relentless yet. Shows all the muscle, density, richness and range of flavor found in many Shafer reds, yet takes it to another level in this vintage. The aromatics are full and distinct, with loads of dark berry, charcoal, and then as it unfolds touches of black cherry, raspberry, red and black licorice, sailing along and then firming nicely on the finish. Syrah and Petite Sirah. Best from 2013 through 2023.
Another thoroughbred in the making is the 2008 Relentless. Full-bodied with sensational extract and richness, its opaque purple color is followed by terrific smoky barbecue notes, full-bodied opulence and tremendous depth, power and richness. This stunning Syrah can be drunk over the next 15-20 years.
The field blend of 75% Syrah, 25% Petite Sirah is from a sustainably farmed hillside ranch south of the winery's Stag's Leap District headquarters. On-going layers of plums, meaty-skinned blackberry and a persevering earthy soil and fudge cake texture penetrates to an in-your-face tanacity. But thanks to a creamy determination, the wine is subdued enough to enjoy through thick and thin.
Bright medium ruby. Lively aromas of blackberry, violet and pepper. Juicy and youthfully imploded, with impressive and energy and definition to the flavors of black cherry, spices and pepper; hides its 15.6% alcohol nicely. Less fleshy but more fruity than the 2007 version. Winemaker Fernandez believes that this wine will last longer than the earlier vintage, and noted that the 1999 version is very good right now. This was bottled a month prior to my March visit.