A super reserve designation (just a single barrel was made), De Ponte's Shirley's Gran Reserva spends 18 months in new French oak. It is stylistically in step with the Family Reserve, but in 2005 the fruit may have gotten just a little riper, creating a wine that is close to Russian River status and style. What stands out especially is the structure—vibrant and racy, taut and energized, a pile of ripe fruit on a base of steel beams.
Paul Gregutt is a Contributing Editor for Wine Enthusiast magazine, a founding member of the magazine’s Tasting Panel, and reviews the wines of Oregon and Canada. The author of the critically-acclaimed Washington Wines & Wineries—The Essential Guide, he consulted on the Pacific Northwest entries in current versions of The World Atlas of Wine and The Oxford Companion to Wine.Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.