The Vigilance Red Hills AVA Sauvignon Blanc 2020 is one of the brands from Shannon Ridge winery located in the Lake County AVA north of Napa. This Sauv Blanc is sourced from estate vineyards in the Red Hills sub-AVA, situated on the southern end of Clear Lake.
The vineyards are situated in the foothills of Mount Konocti (elevation 1,400 to 3,000 feet). The area has a climate well suited for vineyards; cold winters and dry summers keep the insect population down. The altitude exposes the vines to intense sunlight and cool evening winds cool the vineyards at night, allowing for a long, full growing season.
All Shannon Ridges wines are sustainably farmed, they use sheep to eat the weeds and fertilize the vines, and they will be 100% organic by the summer of 2022. I enjoy their technical notes for their wines; while most companies spend several paragraphs saying very little, Shannon Ridge offers unique information.
For instance, the Vigilance Red Hills AVA Sauvignon Blanc 2020 uses the Sauvignon Blanc Clone 01 on 101-14 Rootstock. The Clone 01 came from Bordeaux in 1883 and was one of the Wente Family’s grapes perfected. It is also the Sauvignon Blanc varietal planted in New Zealand.
Very few grapes vines are grown from seed; a cutting from a vine is grafted to roots. Specific rootstock is better suited to climate conditions than others. This tells us that these vines were carefully chosen to thrive in these particular vineyards.
The Vigilance is created to be a young, vibrant wine; it was fermented and aged in stainless steel vats. The wine lists on Shannon Ridge’s website for $25, but I found it on sale for $9; it is common for wineries to show prices that do not compete with the wine shops. The alcohol content is 13.8%.
The Vigilance Red Hills AVA Sauvignon Blanc 2020 Tasting Notes
The color is a clean, almost clear butter yellow. The nose is pretty, not as bold as some Sauvignon Blanc; there are scents of pear, peach, crisp apple, and lemon, along with faint melon, soft lime, and a floral edge. The Vigilance Red Hills AVA Sauvignon Blanc 2020 smooth, crisp Sauv Blanc with good length.
This wine tastes like green apple, guava, melon, Anjou pear, and a hint of cream. The mid-palate brings a salty sensation, along with peach and nectarine. The city is well-balanced and lets all the flavors slowly unfold. Even though the Vigilance uses the exact grape clone as New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. Smooth and balanced is the key compared to big and bold with the NZ wine.
- The Vigilance Red Hills AVA Sauvignon Blanc 2020 a unique and tasty wine.
- Do not serve this Sauv Blanc too cold, the flavors really blossum when the temperature is just right.
- It is funny how the same grape clone planted in two very different locations can be so very different.
- The more I sip the Vigilance Red Hills AVA Sauvignon Blanc 2020 the better it tastes.