Shafer Vineyards Cabernet Hillside Select hardly needs an introduction. It is positioned within the handful of Napa cult cabernets that receives great press year in and year out. Always a pleasure to drink, we have some large formats that are sure to make you look like a rock star at the next family gathering where Cabernet is King!
Very deep inky-purple colored, the 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is incredibly intense and impactful on the nose, revealing notes of crushed black cherries, blackberries and fresh black currants with underlying notions of charcoal, sauteed herbs, black soil, chargrilled meat and pencil lead, plus a waft of violets. Very full-bodied, very rich and wonderfully concentrated, the wall of fruit is well matched by a firm structure of ripe, grainy tannins and plenty of freshness, finishing with great length and depth. LPB - The Wine Advocate
The 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is one of the more restrained, understated versions of this wine I can remember tasting. Medium in body (in relative terms) and beautifully persistent, the 2014 makes its case more with a total sense of harmony rather than with bombastic power, as is sometimes the case. Moreover, the 2014 has really come together beautifully since I last tasted it. In 2014, Hillside Select is a wine of precision, with expressive aromatics and finely-knit tannins that support the mid-palate and finish nicely. Antonio Galloni - Vinous Media
Lastly, the flagship 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon Hillside Select is 100% Cabernet Sauvignon (the only vintage where it wasn't 100% was in 1984, when it included 9% Cabernet Franc) brought up all in high-class French oak. A textbook example of the balanced nature of the 2014 vintage, it offers a complex bouquet of creme de cassis, lead pencil shavings, tobacco leaf, and subtle minerality. Finesse-driven yet powerful on the palate, with full-bodied richness, its tannin structure is perfectly integrated into the wine, it has notable purity and freshness, and a great finish. It's relatively approachable by this cuvee's standard but has another 20-30 years of longevity ahead of it. - Jeb Dunnuck
A fascinating nose of licorice, tarte tartin, blackcurrant compote, orange rind, ivy, holly, pine needles, ash, Christmas cake and even raspberry cheesecake as well as a slight minty/herbal note. The palate is so well-knit but powerful; it's the sort of wine that takes no prisoners. Yet the vintage shines through, and it remains always fresh and balanced. Layers upon layers of fruit and a long, decadent finish. Drink in 2022. - James Suckling