Food & Wine magazine awards top honors to Shafer’s
2002 Merlot and 2001 Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon
in 2005 American Wine Awards
First time Food & Wine honors two wines from the same winery
Second consecutive Food & Wine award for a Shafer merlot
October's Food & Wine magazine ranks two Shafer wines at the top
September 28, 2005 – For the third consecutive year Shafer wine’s have received top-in-the-nation honors from Food & Wine magazine’s “American Wine Awards.”
The October 2005 issue of Food & Wine ranks Shafer Vineyards’ 2002 Merlot as the top Merlot in the “Best Wines Over $20” category. And in an unprecedented move, the magazine awarded the same winery a second top honor, naming Shafer’s 2001 Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon top Cabernet in the over $20 category.
On CNN, Food & Wine senior editor Ray Isle called Hillside Select, “… a benchmark California Cabernet,” when discussing its place among this years awardees.
“Everyone at Shafer feels elated and very, very fortunate,” says Doug Shafer. “To receive another American Wine Award is a testament to not only a great place to grow wine grapes but to the year-round integrity and skill of the men and women who artfully cultivate our vineyards and make our wine.”
The magazine named only eight wines in the U.S. in the over $20 category.
Of the 2002 Merlot, Food & Wine editors write: “Shafer winemaker Elias Fernandez scored the first-ever double victory in this year’s Awards for both his Hillside Cabernet and this powerful, inky Merlot. The latter manages to showcase both the fruit intensity of Napa’s 2002 vintage and the subtle, aromatic elegance that makes the Merlot grape so highly prized.”
Regarding 2001 Hillside Select, the magazine writes: “This monumental, deeply extracted wine comes from the original vineyards John Shafer purchased in the Stags Leap District back in the 1970s. A superb vintage like 2001 resulted in this plush, power-packed Cab framed by the Stags Leap District’s trademark lush, velvety tannins.”
Doug Shafer attended the 2005 American Wine Awards event held September 29, at Jack Falstaff restaurant in San Francisco. The event was hosted by Food & Wine Publisher Julie McGowan, Editor in Chief Dana Cowin, and Wine Editor Lettie Teague.
Shafer Vineyards was honored by the American Wine Awards in 2003 when Food & Wine named Shafer’s 2001 Merlot the top Merlot in the over $20 category. In 2002 the magazine’s editors ranked Relentless, Shafer’s Syrah, the best in its category and named Shafer’s winemaker of 20 years, Elias Fernandez, winemaker of the year.