Wine of the week: Shannon Ridge Wrangler Red 2012

shannon ridge wrangler redThere are a variety of red blends from California, usually older vintages from smaller wineries, that you won’t find unless you dig through the bottom shelves at your local retailer. The Wine Curmudgeon, who is infamous for this sort of behavior, found the Clayhouse, Josh Cellars, and Stephen Vincent reds this way.

My most recent shelf digging turned up the Shannon Ridge Wrangler Red ($14, purchased, 13.9%), a blend from from Lake County, a region probably better known for its whites. Nevertheless, the red — a combination of zinfandel, syrah, petite sirah, and cabernet sauvignon — was more than up to the standards set by the region’s whites. It had a most welcome freshness, without any of the cloying fruit that dominates so many of these kinds of wines.

Look for red fruit (cherries and raspberries?), but much more than fruit, including a surprising depth from the cabernet that most winemakers don’t bother with when they make this style of red blend. The oak was a little top heavy, but given the wine’s age, it didn’t get in the way and even sort of faded as the bottle emptied. Drink this with any summer barbecue; it’s the kind of wine to sip while you’re grilling burgers and getting ready for Fourth of July fireworks.

2 thoughts on “Wine of the week: Shannon Ridge Wrangler Red 2012

  • By Ray Dietz - Reply

    Over the past year or so I’ve enjoyed numerous bottles of Lake County wine from the Shannon Ridge and Vigilence winerys. I agree that the whites are somewhat better overall but I have enjoyed the 2011 Vigilance Cimmeron red blend very much.

    These wines were all Chairman’s Selections in the Pa. Wine & Spirits system and were very attractively priced.

  • By Eric Awes - Reply

    How about $8.99 per bottle at Ralph’s grocery chain and $6.29 if you buy six???

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