Sunday, October 14, 2018

Wine Review: Buck Shack Small Batch Red Wine 2016

October is Shannon Ridge Month on!

Buck Shack Red Wine 2016

In 1995, Clay Shannon discovered a magnificent piece of property in the hills overlooking Clear Lake in Lake County, thirty-five miles north of Napa’s famed vineyards. He quickly set out to develop vineyards, Clay’s vision was simple: "We wanted to grow the best fruit in the world,” says Clay, “but we wanted to do it in a way that made us happy living there... The landscape is rugged and wild, and so are our neighbors – we’re surrounded by wildlife. We’ve got ducks, geese, deer, raccoons, quail, golden eagles, bald eagles, wild turkey, chipmunks and bobcats that visit us regularly. We are also visited commonly by bears, mountain lions and elk." 

Shannon Ridge is passionate about preserving their land, not only for great vineyard sites, but for the wild creatures which share the property. Their sustainability practices integrate a flock of sheep that clean the vineyards, remove the excess canopy, and reduce the need for chemicals, while providing natural fertilizer. “Sustainability wasn’t some philosophical concept;" says Clay, "it is the way we live our lives.”

All of October is dedicated to Shannon Ridge! This is review #5 of 8, and you can read all of the reviews I've done so far by clicking here.

On the Shannon Ridge property was a skinning shed called the "Ye Old Buck Shack" that had stood there for a hundred years. So they restored it and converted it into a whiskey bar, and named a line of their wines after it. Buck Shack has a Cabernet Sauvignon, Bourbon Barrel Cabernet Sauvignon, and a Red Wine blend. Today I'm reviewing the 2016 Red Wine, which is a blend of mainly Syrah and Petite Sirah, and then small amounts of Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Barbera. All I can tell you further is that they "laid these wines down in some expensive new barrels and let it age". So I don't know what kind or for how long. It has a 14.7% ABV, though.

The color of the wine is a dark ruby red. There's aromas of lavender, strawberries, raisins, vanilla ice cream, and black table pepper. On the palate it's full bodied with a rich mouthfeel and thick, chalky tannin. There's quite a bit of acidity but, rather than bringing tartness and off-balancing the wine, it brings saliva which, if you didn't know already, makes for an excellent food wine. There's flavors of jammy black raspberries, strawberry jelly, ripe plums, green pepper, mocha, and vanilla. Then it finishes with the astringency of that chalky tannin and flavors of plums and vanilla.

This is absolutely what you're looking for when you want a Syrah / Petite Sirah based blend out of California. Jammy yet very dry, structured yet not overbearing, robust but elegant. For $30 I've gotta give it a Recommendation. You know what this wine is calling out for? Sizzling beef fajitas. Looks like it's Mexican for dinner tomorrow.

Price: $30
Rating: 4/5 = Recommended (what does that mean?)

The bottle used was supplied free of charge by Trio Wine Company for the purpose of this unpaid review. To have your wine reviewed follow this link.


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