Release date: August 31, 2012
Suggested California retail: $63.00
“Shafer's annual contribution to the Rhône gene pool is one incredible Syrah” – Steve Heimoff, Wine Enthusiast
2009 Relentless is sourced from a rugged, remote estate vineyard that delivers consistently full, luscious aromas and flavors and a long, cool growing season that is one of the finest we've seen.
“The 2009 offers dense, enticing aromas and flavors of purple/black fruit, smoked meat, spice, incense, black plums and berry. Even at this young age it offers elegance wrapped in extract, with ripe tannins and good structure for aging. In the mouth it’s full and rich from the first taste through the long finish,” writes Shafer winemaker Elias Fernandez.
This wine honors long-time Shafer Winemaker Elias Fernandez and his relentless pursuit of quality. Sourced from small ridgetop and foothills vineyards adjacent to the southern border of Stags Leap District, the grapes for Relentless are a "field blend" of Syrah and Petite Sirah. This means it's a wine that is literally blended in the vineyard. At harvest the two grape varieties are picked, crushed, fermented and barrel aged as one.
Syrah and Petite Sirah for Relentless are grown in vineyard blocks that offer a variety of sun exposures throughout the day, including steep eastern blocks for lots of morning sun and westward sloping blocks, offering midday and late day solar exposure. Thanks to its thin, volcanic soil and quick runoff the vineyard consistently delivers effusive flavors.
Relentless is a wine that is literally blended in the vineyard. At harvest the Syrah and Petite Sirah varieties are picked, crushed, fermented and barrel aged together.
Finding Our Wines
Robert M. Parker Jr.’s The Wine Advocate,
“…a big, explosive wine bursting with dark red fruit, flowers and spices. This is a young wine with plenty of life … floral notes reappear on the finish adding brightness and lift.”
— Antonio Galloni, The Wine Advocate
“The insider’s Shafer. Riper and flirtier than a northern Rhone Syrah, very va-va-voom: stops just short of putting on the red light a la Barossa. 20% Petite Sirah gives it extra punch. Drink with pork chops or ribs.”
— Jay McInerney, The Wall St. Journal
“… attractive, forward, intense, earthy, ripe, almost jammy, dark cherry and blackberry fruit aroma with herbal notes and hints of smoked meat and black pepper; full body; big, dense, extracted, chewy, dark berry fruit flavors; full tannin; lingering aftertaste. Developed with airing in the glass, though still deserving several more years of bottle aging. Very highly recommended.”
— California Grapevine
“Brimming with dark, rich berry, loamy earth, crushed rock and espresso. This is a powerful expression that is also tapered and sophisticated, ending with all kinds of subtle nuances that come alive on the finish.”
— James Laube, Wine Spectator
Shafer's bold blend of Syrah and Petite Sirah was named to honor winemaker Elias Fernandez and his relentless pursuit of quality.