98pts Tasting Panel
We taste this proprietary blend of Syrah (86%) and Petite Sirah (14%) almost every vintage, and this time we admired the elevated elegance of its structure, with silkier tannins than we recall in former bottlings. Grown on a small ridgetop just south of the Stags Leap District, the grapes experienced a lengthy hang time, and the result is stunning: Chocolate, black plum, slate, black olive, and leather reveal themselves in the opaque, carmineblack–hued liquid, which aged 30 months in 100% new French oak and has an ABV of 15.8%.
94pts Jeb Dunnuck
While I don't think the 2017 Relentless will match the 2018, it's nevertheless a beautiful Syrah that offers lots of smoky dark berry fruits, barbecue notes, spice, and meaty nuances in a rich, pure, nicely textured, medium to full-bodied package. It's going to evolve gracefully for a solid 10-12 years.
94pts Wine Spectator
Deep and powerfully built, with a rich and polished texture that highlights wild berry and blueberry flavors that show notes of espresso, smoky beef and black pepper. Finishes with big but refined tannins. Syrah and Petite Sirah. Drink now through 2030.
92pts Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Composed of 86% Syrah and 14% Petite Sirah, the 2017 Relentless has a deep garnet-purple color and fragrant notes of cracked black pepper, licorice and violets over a core of plum preserves, Black Forest cake and mulberries plus an earthy waft of tar. Medium to full-bodied, the palate has lovely purity and freshness, featuring ripe, rounded tannins and lots of pepper and spice layers, finishing refreshingly savory.
“... a bold, flamboyant wine that seems to have put on even more density over the last year, hard as that may seem to believe. Black cherry, licorice, spice, leather and menthol are all amped up in this decidedly opulent, full-throttle Syrah-based wine.”
The elegant 2017 offers a wealth of aromas and flavors – black plum, herbs, grilled game, vanilla, leather, herbs, river stone, and spice. The richness, balance, and vibrancy of the wine is mouthfilling and soul satisfying on every level with ripe, silky tannins that offer the promise of greater pleasures with years of cellaring. — Elias Fernandez