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Friday, December 9, 2011

2006 Shafer One Point Five

Many times when I’ve decided to order steak for dinner I’ll look over the wine list and usually decide on a Cabernet Sauvignon since I never tire of them.  And lots of times I’ve considered the Shafer One Point Five Cabernet (Napa - Stags Leap District) but hadn’t had it yet, until last weekend when I chose the 2006 Shafer One Point Five.  It was worth the wait and quickly took its place near the top of my list of favorite American Cabernets.

2006 Shafer One Point Five

The wine was decanted for some time before dinner, and the aromas were so powerful that even though the decanter was on the other side of the table while I sipped my Matua Sauvignon Blanc with my appetizer, I could still catch bold fruit, spice, and wood aromas coming from that decanter.

Finally it was time for Cabernet.  The wine is a dark red with a lighter rim, not much brick and definitely still leaning toward a pinkish rim, indicating a fairly youthful wine, and it really coated the glass when swirled.  The aromas were intense - both dark and red fruit, lots of berry and a bit of wildness in the fruit, chocolate, coffee, purple flowers, spices, smokiness, wood, and earth - so many layers - and the aromas were confirmed on the palate as well, particularly the darker fruit and lovely sophisticated spice.  The wine is nicely balanced as I fully expected it to be, with plenty of acidity to accommodate the dish yet very present tannins, drying the palate and giving it a beautiful texture, and the finish is long.

I do love trying new things and opening bottles of wine that promise surprises and unexpected results, but there is something to be said for choosing a bottle from a very reputable region and producer, and the Shafer surely did not disappoint.  I really enjoyed it and after a bit of an absence from American Cabernet, it was a welcome return.

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