Clay Shannon started making wine in Lake County in 1995. Clay comes from a family of farmers and has applied his knowledge of sustainable practices, and his time as a vineyard manager in St. Helena to create an agricultural icon of California's North Coast. When he first visited the property, he left uninterested, as, at 2,5000 feet, clouds and fog obscured most of the land. When Clay returned the following spring, however, he saw what was hidden behind the clouds and bought 80 acres. Shannon Ridge Wines now occupies 2,000 acres and has vineyards in Napa and Sonoma as well.
Buck Shack takes its name from a 100-year-old shed, called "Ye Ol' Buck Shack" tucked deep into the vineyards at Shannon Ridge. This unique wine is a 100% Petite Sirah from Clay's mountain vineyard in High Valley, a sub-AVA in Lake County. Shannon Ridge makes several petite Sirahs and blends that garnered many awards over the years. The Buck Shack Bourbon Barrel Petite Sirah is aged for three months in French and American oak barrels before it is moved into freshly emptied bourbon barrels for three months.
This bold wine has notes of mocha, leather, and spices accentuating the fruit. It is smooth on the palate before the tannins take over. The finish is earthy, full of dark fruit and bitters with a dry finish. Aging the wine in bourbon barrels shows off the natural ripe fruits while softening tannins, and adding an aged balance to the wine. Pair this with a hearty dinner of beef, lamb, or game (if you prefer a vegetarian option, go with a creamy roasted mushroom dish).