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SH AFE R OWNE R 'S MANUAL

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Winemaking at Shafer

The Shafer approach to vineyard cultivation and winemaking can be summed up in the title of the old Stephen Stills song, "Love the one you're with." When we started making wine in the late 1970s, none of us had the opportunity to visit other great viticultural regions of the world and learn how wine was made in, say, Bordeaux, Chianti, or Southern Australia. The team of John Shafer, Doug Shafer, and Elias Fernandez was completely absorbed (they might say "overwhelmed") in learning how to grow fruit and make wine from our little plot of earth in Napa Valley.

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Shafer Vineyards, Napa Valley, Stags Leap District

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By the late 1980s after more than a decade focused solely on this site, we knew our soils, our climate, and our fruit and had developed approaches to making the best tasting wine that our vineyards could deliver. Thanks to our warm, moderate climate -- with abundant sunlight during midday, chilly evenings, and foggy early mornings -- our vineyards yield fruit that offers concentrated, lush aromas and flavors. Our love-the-one-you're-with approach means that we let our vineyards speak for themselves and don't attempt to alter our boldly flavored California fruit so that it parrots the style of another region. The resulting wines reflect the consistency found on these singular vineyard sites -- clean, rich, long aromas and flavors. Over the decades we find that these wines mature beautifully, eventually giving up those rambunctious flavors of youth for the smoky elegance and layered flavors of age.

Winery Profile

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Annual production: 32,000 cases Varietals produced: Chardonnay, Merlot, Syrah, and Cabernet Sauvignon Ownership: Fully owned and operated by the Shafer family Chairman: John Shafer President: Doug Shafer Winemaker: Elias Fernandez Date winery estate purchased by Shafer family: 1972 Vintage of first wine produced: 1978 Location of winery estate: Stags Leap District, Napa Valley Total vineyard acreage: 210

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Shafer History Timeline

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1880s Napa Valley pioneers Jacob Ohl and C. H. Linderman plant vineyards on future Shafer estate. 1922 Italian immigrant Batista Scansi re-plants during Prohibition and sells fruit to home winemakers. 1972 Shafer family purchases 209-acre property including 30 acres of Scansi's vineyards. 1973- John Shafer plants Cabernet Sauvignon, creating small hillside vineyard 1974 blocks such as Sunspot and John's Folly. 1977 John decides to start a winery and makes his first foray into winemaking with a batch of homemade Zinfandel from 50-year-old vines. 1978 John makes his first Shafer Vineyards wine -- a precursor to Hillside Select Cabernet Sauvignon -- with fruit from John's Folly. 1979 A bitterly cold January keeps Shafer's first Cabernet from going through malolactic fermentation. John finds the warmth the wine needs when he wraps the barrels in electric blankets. 1981 Shafer's 1978 Cabernet is released and makes its debut at the first Napa Valley Wine Auction.

1981 On the Monday following the first Wine Auction a huge wildfire sweeps through Napa Valley's dry eastern hills. John's home narrowly escapes destruction and afterward he plants a vineyard around the house, naming it "Firebreak." 1982 Shafer clears three acres of Zinfindel and buds over to Merlot. 1983 Doug joins the winery as winemaker. When he tastes the 1982 lot from the Sunspot vineyard block he's so impressed he talks John into keeping it separate from the others. With the Sunspot lot Doug creates Shafer's one and only Reserve Cabernet. 1984 Doug says the Reserve deserves a better name and creates the first Hillside Select with the 1983 vintage. Elias Fernandez is hired as assistant winemaker three weeks prior to his graduation from U.C. Davis. 1985 The hit TV show Falcon Crest turns a knoll near the winery into a cemetery and "buries" John's favorite World War II pin-up girl Lana Turner. John names the site "La Vigna Lana." Shafer releases its first Merlot, a 1983 vintage. Shafer releases the fifth and final Zinfandel, a 1983 vintage, which is dubbed "Last Chance."

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1985 John leads an effort to petition the government to designate Stags Leap District an American Viticultural Area (AVA). 1988 Shafer purchases 70-acre Red Shoulder Ranch in Carneros. Shafer takes first steps toward sustainable agriculture, planting cover crops and erecting hawk perches and owl nesting boxes (to encourage these raptors to lower the gopher population) in Stags Leap District and Carneros vineyards. 1989 Stags Leap District is approved as an AVA. 1991 Shafer digs an 8,000 sq. ft. wine cave. 1993 Shafer releases its first proprietary red wine, Firebreak, a 1991 vintage blend of Sangiovese and Cabernet. Shafer's "electric blanket" vintage, the 1978 Cabernet, wins an international competition in Germany, outranking such wines as Chateau Margaux and Chateau Latour. 1994 Doug is named winery president, Elias is named winemaker, and John takes the role of chairman. 1995 Shafer's first Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay, 1994 vintage, is released. The vineyard hawks are happy and well-fed.

1998 John brings new puppy Tucker to the office, where he joins John's phone conversations and eats the mail. 1999 John chairs the Napa Valley Wine Auction, raising a record-breaking $5.5 million. 2002 First release of Relentless, 1999 vintage, named to honor Elias' relentless pursuit of wine quality. Elias is named "Winemaker of the Year" by two prestigious publications: Quarterly Review of Wines and Food & Wine magazine. He is also honored at the White House as a Hispanic role model. Shafer's hillside vineyards are named among the Top 25 Vineyards in the World by Wine & Spirits magazine. 2003 Shafer is dubbed "one of the world's greatest wineries" by wine critic Robert M. Parker, Jr. Shafer's barrel lot of 2001 Hillside Select takes the top spot at the Napa Valley Wine Auction. Shafer barrels move into a new state-of-the-art barrel room. 2004 Shafer celebrates 25 years of winemaking. To celebrate 25 years and to honor John Shafer, Shafer Vineyards releases a one-time bottling of 2001 Shafer 25th Sunspot Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon: 25 barrels made from 25-year-old Sunspot vines.

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2004 Shafer's barrel lot of 2002 Hillside Select takes the top spot at the Napa Valley Wine Auction. Shafer constructs a 128-kW solar array and becomes the first winery in Napa and Sonoma to generate to 100 percent of its power needs with solar energy. 2005 An extensive winery renovation and expansion project begins. Employees and guests are greeted daily with new configurations of mud, orange safety cones, piles of stone, and construction equipment. 2006 The final release of Shafer's Sangiovese is dubbed "Last Chance Firebreak" harkening back to the "Last Chance Zinfandel" 21 years previous. 2007 Shafer releases first vintage of One Point Five Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon. The name plays off "a generation and a half," a term Doug and John created to describe their long-time working relationship. Shafer's barrel lot of 2005 Hillside Select takes the top spot at the Napa Valley Wine Auction, breaking the $100,000 mark. The winery's renovation project is completed, offering a new tasting area and an inviting new look.

The Shafer Team

John Shafer, Chairman

The lure of wine country farming inspired John Shafer in 1972 to make a career change, leaving behind 23 years of corporate experience to begin work in a new field. And in the fields, or rather the vineyards, is exactly where he began his new career. John could be seen throughout the mid-70s riding on his tractor as he tilled and terraced the soil of his family's new estate in the foothills of the Stags Leap Palisades. What began as a career in grape growing quickly expanded into full-scale winemaking. In 1978, John made the winery's first Cabernet Sauvignon and a year later construction began on the family winery. The debut wine was released in 1981 to high praise, including a first place in the San Francisco Vintners Club Cabernet taste-off. More than fifteen years later, this wine continues to prove its remarkable ageability, winning first place in a 1993 German blind tasting against first growth Bordeaux wines. In 1984 John lead a group of neighboring vintners to petition the government to designate Stags Leap as an American Viticultural Area (AVA). In 1989 the group was successful and Stags Leap District was officially created.

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In 1994, John moved from the position of president to chairman of the board. In his new position, he focuses on longrange strategic planning and export sales.

Doug Shafer, President

Doug Shafer arrived in the Napa Valley at age 17 when he moved with his family from the Chicago suburbs to a new home in the foothills of the Stags Leap Palisades. Throughout his junior and senior years of high school he spent long hours helping his father replant and then clear land for new vineyards. His satisfaction working in the vineyards inspired him to enroll in the enology and viticulture program at the University of California at Davis. While completing his university studies, Doug spent summers working with his father in the vineyards and at Hanns Kornell and Robert Mondavi wineries. Meanwhile, his father was preparing to crush the first vintage of wine in 1978. Following graduation, Doug honed his skills as assistant winemaker at Lakespring Winery prior to becoming winemaker at Shafer in 1983.

During his ten years as winemaker, Doug created Hillside Select and forged the trademark Shafer style of quality, consistency, and elegance. Vintage by vintage, he learned to highlight the natural character of the grapes from his family's hillside vineyards, crafting wines that reflect the Stags Leap District character of rich fruit and soft tannins. During this period he also managed the estate vineyards and developed a new vineyard in the Carneros district. In the late 1980s, Doug launched the winery in the direction of sustainable agriculture. Today the vineyards are cultivated without the use of chemical fertilizers or insecticides and the winery distinguished itself as the first in the region to flip the switch to 100 percent solar power. In 1994, Doug took over the reins as president when his father John became chairman of the board. As president, Doug oversees the daily operations of the winery and vineyards as well as sales and marketing. He maintains a hands-on approach, working closely with his father and winemaker Elias Fernandez to ensure both the quality of the wines and the future of Shafer Vineyards. Long-term, Doug is committed to preserving Shafer as a small family winery dedicated to the production of world-class wines from the estate vineyards.

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Elias Fernandez, Winemaker

Elias Fernandez knows Napa Valley vineyards from the roots up, having first-hand experience of what it's like to work in summer heat among dusty vine rows as well as how tough it is to prune vines in the freezing winter predawn light. Both his parents were farmworkers who worked in local orchards and vineyards. In junior high, Elias started working with his father, who taught him to drive tractors and train and prune grapevines. From both parents he learned the value of hard work and self-reliance. With his mother's encouragement Elias played trumpet from an early age and distinguished himself to such a degree that he received a Fulbright music scholarship to attend the Jazz program at the University of Nevada, Reno. He is the first person in his family to attend college. After a year in Reno Elias says something just "clicked" and he felt an tug to return to his agricultural roots. In 1981 he enrolled at University of California, Davis to study enology, the science of winemaking.

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Three weeks before graduation, in 1984, he was hired as assistant winemaker at Shafer Vineyards working with Doug Shafer. The winery was then just five years old. Those first ten years were some of the toughest of his career, learning often by trial and error the intricacies of growing grapes, making wine, and operating a cellar. For several years Elias shared co-winemaker duties with Doug Shafer. Then in 1994 Doug became winery president and Elias took on the winemaker title with all of its duties. In 2002 both Quarterly Review of Wines and Food & Wine magazine named Elias "Winemaker of the Year." Shafer Vineyards was selected as one of the "25 Great Vineyards in the World" by Wine & Spirits magazine. On October 2, 2002 he accepted a prestigious "Hall of Fame" award from the Hispanic Scholarship Fund in Washington D.C. and attended a White House reception hosted by President George W. Bush.

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Vineyard Locations

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BORDERLINE Size: 25 acres Location: Stags Leap District Variety planted: Cabernet Sauvignon LA MESA Size: 18 acres Location: Napa Valley Varieties planted: Syrah, Petite Sirah RIDGEBACK & SCHOOL BUS Size: 42 acres Location: Napa Valley Varieties planted: Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot

Shafer Vineyards Wines

From a modest beginning of 1,000 cases in 1978, Shafer Vineyards has grown slowly until reaching its present size of 32,000 cases of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, and Syrah. Today Shafer wines are available in major markets nationwide and in top restaurants and hotels internationally. "... one of the world's greatest wineries. -- Robert M. Parker, Jr. "

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HILLSIDE ESTATE VINEYARDS Size: 54 acres Location: Stags Leap District Variety planted: Cabernet Sauvignon RED SHOULDER RANCH Size: 66 acres Location: Los Carneros Variety planted: Chardonnay

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Red Shoulder Ranch® Chardonnay Carneros Chardonnay

Shafer's Red Shoulder Ranch vineyard lies within sight of the northern rim of San Francisco Bay. The marine-influenced climate in Napa Valley's southernmost growing area, Carneros, offers a long, cool growing season that's ideal for developing Chardonnay's spectrum of floral and tropical aromas and flavors as well as its natural acidity. The cellar team takes a largely hands-off approach for producing this wine. We use only the yeast that thrives naturally in the vineyard for fermentation and, in order to enjoy the variety's true acidity, we do not put the wine through malolactic fermentation. Instead we ferment the wine in individual barrels (80 percent oak, 20 percent stainless steel) and we stir the lees once a week during its 14 months of aging to give the wine a creamy mouthfeel.

Tasting Notes

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Merlot Napa Valley Merlot

While this wine is officially designated with the Napa Valley appellation, its fruit is sourced from within just a three mile radius in the Valley's cooler southern end. Much of the fruit for our Merlot comes from a hilly Shafer-owned vineyard we've informally dubbed "School Bus, located about a quarter " mile due south of Stags Leap District. The remainder is cultivated within Stags Leap District by growers we've worked with closely for years. Since first planting this variety in 1981 we've learned that Merlot is a finicky grape -- a bit too much rain or a touch of frost early in the season can easily result in less than ideal fruit. Years of experience have taught us to tend these vines with care. Early on each season our vineyard team culls any less developed fruit, leaving only the best-of-the-best on the vine. This ensures that the wine exhibits lush, ripe, mouth-filling flavors that are true to varietal character.

Tasting Notes

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One Point Five® Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon

Only a handful of Cabernet Sauvignons in the world are designated as Stags Leap District wines thanks to the appellation's small size. It takes only four minutes to drive the length of the District, passing through its 1,300 planted acres. Since the early 1980s Shafer has produced two Cabernets from Stags Leap District, and One Point Five continues that tradition. The fruit is predominantly sourced from the Hillside Estate Vineyards surrounding the winery as well as a 25-acre Shafer-owned vineyard located two miles south of the winery called "Borderline," which sits inside the border of Stags Leap District. The name One Point Five is meant to convey the importance of the family partnership at the core of Shafer Vineyards. A familiar family business story is the second-generation tale, where a parent hands an established enterprise over to a son or daughter. Here though, John and Doug Shafer have worked together for so long, they describe their partnership as a-generation-and-a-half, from which we coined the name One Point Five.

Tasting Notes

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Relentless® Napa Valley Syrah/Petite Sirah

Relentless is born on a remote ridgetop vineyard in the southern foothills of Napa Valley's Vaca Mountain range. The wine is a field blend of 80 percent Syrah and 20 percent Petite Sirah, which means that these two grape varietals grow side by side, and are picked and crushed together.

Tasting Notes

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In the first vintages of this wine the Petite Sirah dominated with its purple-midnight color and solid black-fruit, smoke, and black pepper flavors. In the more recent vintages the Syrah has moved into the forefront with its flavors of spice and meatiness, bringing a touch of elegance to this otherwise bold, flamboyant wine. The wine is named to honor long-time Shafer Winemaker Elias Fernandez and his relentless pursuit of quality in the vineyard and cellar.

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Hillside Select® Stags Leap District Cabernet Sauvignon

Shafer's signature wine, Hillside Select, is sourced from the slopes of an amphitheater-like structure of thin soil and rock, where thanks to a series of knolls and outcroppings some vineyard blocks receive southeastern sunlight, while others receive southern or western exposures.

Tasting Notes

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Each afternoon cool breezes from San Francisco Bay (located about 18 miles to the south) channel into our box canyon. The consistent see-saw of daytime heat and evening chill retains acidity within deeply ripened fruit, resulting in a wine of exquisite balance. Meanwhile, the rock-choked site offers little more than 18 to 22 inches of volcanic soil before meeting weathered bedrock below. With the hillside's quick runoff and the lack of plant nutrients, the struggling vines produce less than half the fruit tonnage per acre as a typical Napa Valley vineyard. The clusters are small, made up of blueberry-sized grapes that when crushed offer rich flavor, soft texture, and smooth, elegant tannins.

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Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay Production Notes

Our only white wine is sourced from a single Shafer-owned vineyard that lies within sight of the northernmost reach of San Francisco Bay. Appellation: Acres:

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Merlot Production Notes

Shafer grows its own Merlot fruit at a vineyard called "School Bus" and purchases the remainder from Stags Leap District growers we've partnered with for years. Appellation: Acres: Grape Variety: GPS Location: Elevation: Soil Type: Soil Depth: Varietal Composition: Brix at Harvest: Cooperage: Bottle: Case Production: Napa Valley (located near the southern boundary of Stags Leap District in the foothills of the Vaca Mountains) 11 Merlot 38º22'27.65"N, 122 º18'02.95"W 68 to 130 ft Silty loam 29 - 56 inches The blend changes somewhat each vintage. Typically 80 to 85% Merlot with 15 to 20% Cabernet Sauvignon 24.0° - 25.5° 20 months in French oak barrels (60% new) 7 months in the bottle prior to release Approximately 9,000 - 10,000

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Los Carneros, Napa Valley 68 Chardonnay 38º14'44.92"N, 122 º21'14.36"W 126 to 243 ft Diablo clay and silty clay 16 - 30 inches 100% Chardonnay 24.0° - 25.0° 14 months in 50% new oak: 80% French (Allier, Vosge), 20% American oak (Missouri) Fermented in the barrel with wild yeast. Barrels are 80% oak, 20% stainless steel. 0% malolactic fermentation 3 months in the bottle prior to release Approximately 5,000 - 6,500

Grape Variety: GPS Location: Elevation: Soil Type: Soil Depth: Varietal Composition: Brix at Harvest: Cooperage: Fermentation Bottle: Case Production:

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One Point Five Cabernet Sauvignon Production Notes

One Point Five is sourced predominantly from two Stags Leap District vineyards: our Hillside Estate Vineyard and the Borderline Vineyard, which Shafer also owns, located about two miles south of the winery. Hillside Estate Vineyard Stats Appellation:

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Soil Depth: Varietal Composition: Brix at Harvest: Cooperage: Bottle: Case Production:

3 to 4 feet 98-99% Cabernet Sauvignon, 1-2% Petite Verdot 24.0° - 25.5° 20 months in 75% new French oak (Allier & Tronçais) 11 months in the bottle prior to release Approximately 9,500 - 10,000

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Napa Valley, Stags Leap District 54 Cabernet Sauvignon 38º25'13.52"N, 122 º19'31.28"W 185 to 510 ft Volcanic 18 - 22 inches

Acres: Grape Variety: GPS Location: Elevation: Soil Type: Soil Depth:

Borderline Vineyard Stats Appellation: Acres: GPS Location: Elevation: Soil Type: Napa Valley, Stags Leap District 25 38º22'58.69"N, 122 º18'35.36"W 64 - 80 ft Loam

Borderline Vineyard, Stags Leap District

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Relentless Production Notes

Relentless is a field blend of the noble grape Syrah and its more rustic cousin Petite Sirah. This combination creates a wine that's powerful and rich with a lasting finish. Appellation: Acres:

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Hillside Select Production Notes

Hillside Select is a wine of a place, sourced solely from the Cabernet Sauvignon planted on the arid, rocky slopes that surround the winery. Appellation: Acres: Grape Variety: GPS Location: Elevation: Soil type: Soil depth: Fruit Selection: Napa Valley, Stags Leap District 54 Cabernet Sauvignon

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Napa Valley (located less than 100 feet from the southern boundary of Stags Leap District in the foothills of the Vaca Mountains) 30 Syrah, Petite Sirah 38 º22'59.19N, 122 º17'59.01W 355 - 420 ft Gravelly clay loam 18 - 29 inches 80-85% Syrah, 15-20% Petite Sirah 24.0° - 25.5° 30 months in 100% new French oak barrels (Allier & Tronçais) 8 months in the bottle prior to release Approximately 3,500 - 3,800

Grape Variety: GPS Location: Elevation: Soil Type: Soil Depth: Varietal Composition: Brix at Harvest: Cooperage: Bottle: Case Production:

38°25'13.52"N, 122°19'31.28"W 185 to 510 ft Volcanic 18 - 22 inches The Hillside Estate Vineyard is comprised of 14 vineyard blocks that receive varying degrees of sun exposures throughout the year as well as differing exposure to fog and radiant heat from the towering, granite palisades that serve as a backdrop to our property. These vineyard blocks range in size from one to nine acres and include names such as Sunspot, Venado Ilegal, John's Folly, Rattler, Hitching Post, La Vigna Lana, and others. In addition, these blocks are planted to varying rootstocks and to a handful of genetic subsets, called clones, of Cabernet Sauvignon. Each year our vineyard team harvests the fruit from these blocks separately; we ferment them separately and then select which hillside blocks will go into that vintage's wine -- thus the name Hillside Select.

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Varietal Composition: Brix at Harvest: Cooperage: Bottle:

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100% Cabernet Sauvignon 24.0° - 25.5° 32 months in 100% new French oak barrels (Allier & Tronçais) 15 months in the bottle prior to release Approximately 2,000 ­ 2,400

Case Production:

Shafer Vineyards

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