Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 1 - 77

Shannon Ridge Vineyards and Winery

land management to Shannon Ridge's
farms, the sheep also are a source
of revenue, as the company provides
grass-fed lamb to local restaurants and
for special occasions.
The Ovis Cycle has proven to be one
of the biggest differentiators between
Shannon Ridge and many of its peers.
"Whenever we go into a general sales
meeting with a new client, people say
'you're the sheep guys!,'" Shannon adds.

'Wine for Every Person'
In addition to its own property, the company farms and operates 2,500 acres of
land on behalf of other vineyards. Although the company produced its first
vintages in 2003, Clay Shannon's experience extends back to 1981 and includes work with and on behalf of several major players in the wine industry,
including Sutter Home, Robert Mondavi and Kendall Jackson.
Shannon Ridge takes a direct, vertically integrated approach to wine production. "We are involved in every step
in the business," Shannon says. "We
manage vineyards, prune the vines,
pick the grapes, make the wine, put
it in bottles, work with distributors to
supply wine and help sell it by working
with retailers."
The company produces 180,000 cases of wine annually including varietals
such as chardonnay, zinfandel, malbec and cabernet sauvignon. Shannon
Ridge offers wines under different label
names and at varied price points. The
company's latest offerings are a cabernet sauvignon under its Buck Shack

In addition to farming its own property in Clearlake Oaks, <<
Calif., Shannon Ridge farms and operates more than
2,500 acres on behalf of other vineyards.

brand and a rose bearing its Vigilance
label. Future varietals will include a
pinot noir, for which Shannon Ridge
recently planted 40 acres of grapes on
property it acquired last year.
All of the company's products are
produced with quality and accessibility in mind. "We want to be the go-to
sustainable wine company with a product that is fairly priced in the market,"
Shannon says. "We want to make everyday wine for every person."
Shannon Ridge's wines can be found
in independent retailers as well as large
wine shop chains nationwide. Major retailers include the Harris Teeter grocery
chain, which has stores in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia; Safe-

"We want to be the go-to sustainable
wine company with a product that is
fairly priced." - Clay Shannon

way and Ralphs stores in California; and
Binny's and Mariano's stores in the Chicago area. The company also operates a
tasting room and wine club, and intends
to soon offer wine via its website.
The company's close relationships
with retailers and distributors across
the United States are a reflection of its
overall philosophy. "We're ultimately in
the customer service business," Shannon says. "We listen to our customers
and are small enough and fast enough
to keep them happy. By continuing to do
this, I think in the next few years, we
will be 50 percent larger than we are
right now."

food & drink international * winter 2016 volume 1 * www.fooddrink-magazine.com

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