The Shannon Ranch Big Horn Red Blend 2020 sells for $5.99 at Trader Joe’s and has sold for around $15 at wine shops previously. This is a wine produced by the Shannon Family of Wines a sustainably farmed, family-owned winery located in the Lake County AVA of Northern California. As of 2023 Shannon wines are all certified organic, the the 2020 Big Horn Red predates that. The estate is home to 1,000 sheep who control the weeds and fertilize the vineyards.
Lake County is north of Napa Valley. Some of Lake County’s vineyards are closer to the town of Napa than Napa Valley vineyards. Not that being close to the town of Napa means all that much but it does give you proximity. The largest lake in California is in Lake County and most of the vineyards are in the foothills and mountains.
The Shannon Ranch Big Horn Red Blend 2020 is a blend of 72% Petite Sirah, 9% Zinfandel, 7% Petit Verdot, 6% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Cabernet Franc, 2% Sangiovese, and 1% Pinot Noir. That seems to be a very calculated blend, 6% of this and 2% of that, suggests that this blend was formulated during the final blending process.
The summer of 2020 saw temperatures as high as 116 degrees, which is way too hot for grape vines, but the temps cooled and the Red grapes had a long, full growing period. Shannon does not specify the oak program, but the tasting notes sweet oak, brown spice, and coffee. The alcohol content is 13.5%.
The Shannon Ranch Big Horn Red Blend 2020 Tasting Notes
The color is clean, shiny raspberry jelly red with black highlights. The nose shows some oak contact, it does not smell like a 6-buck Red blend, molasses, black cherry, black pepper, spice, black licorice, blueberry, and roses. The Shannon Ranch Big Horn Red Blend 2020 is a sleek, smooth blend, with several flavors of interesting spice.
This Red Blend tastes like black cherry, a little vanilla, a slap of spice, licorice, and strawberry. The mid-palate brings dark chocolate, blackberry, another flavor of spice, and raspberry. The tannins are sweet and the acidity allows the flavors to fully unfold.
- The Shannon Ranch Big Horn Red Blend 2020 was not intended to sell for $5.99.
- It is an excellent, well-made Red blend.
- I don’t know how it ended up at Trader Joe’s for over 50% off.
- But if you see it, give it a try, it is a bargain.