W.D. Shinn Ranch

The William D. Shinn Ranch resides on 40 acres, on the west side of the well-established and award winning Lodi Appellation. William D. Shinn, better known as Bill, is a 5th generation grape grower on the ranch and is owner of the William D (W.D.) Shinn Ranch.

Our goal at the Shinn Ranch is to produce high quality grapes, for sale to wineries that are known for their high quality wines in a manner that is both environmentally friendly and economically beneficial. We believe in environmental stewardship and farming for future generations. In addition to Bill and John conducting the operations, Sharon Shinn is in charge of the office and finances at Shinn Ranch and is truly the engine that keeps the ranch running.

More about the W.D. Ranch:

The Chardonnays:

The W.D. Shinn Ranch has 3 Blocks of Chardonnay totaling 30 acres and is the bulk of the ranch.  Lodi’s west side is prime terroir for growing white wine varietals such as chardonnay. Our fertile and sandy soils provide a great foundation for the vines, and the cool delta breeze allows for excellent fruit maturation and amazing flavor profiles.  Our Chardonnays are well known for their tropical fruit flavors and balance of acidity and sugar. All 3 Chardonnay blocks are currently uncontracted; if you are interested in purchasing fruit, please contact John.

“The Newbie” –5.5 Acres (2012)

This is the baby block on the ranch. This clone 7 Chardonnay on 1109 Paulsen rootstock is planted on an 11’ x 6’, north-south bilateral trellis configuration. It is a great producing vineyard with large bunches and great flavor. Originally it was going to be added on to the quad block next to it, but we decided that it would be well suited to leave as is on the bilateral trellis. So far, it has worked out wonderfully.

“The Quadzilla” – 11.5 acres (1997)

This monster quad lives up to the name! Originally planted to the specifications of the Sebatiani winery at the time, this clone 7 Chardonnay, on Freedom Rootstock, is spaced at 11’x6’, on a north-to-south box quad trellis system.  It is a fierce producer averaging 9-12 tons consistently per year with amazing quality and tropical fruit flavors. It’s called “Quadzilla” because of the amount of metal used in the box quad system. There are stakes, wires and 36” cross-arms for days out there. It all comes together to help in the production of some very high quality fruit.

“Sharon’s Field” – 13 acres (1991)

This is the pride of the W.D. Shinn Ranch. The name pays homage to the many, many, many hours of sweat equity spent by Sharon and John during summer break, back in 1991, tying and training this field after it was grafted on to old Tokay rootstock using an east-to-west, basic bilateral trellis, on a 10’x7’ spacing. This Chardonnay is a low-to-mid producer with smaller sized bunches and amazing fruit characteristics. The tropical notes and balanced acidity create an amazingly drinkable wine, especially when it is made and aged in stainless steel tanks or neutral oak barrels. We know this because we made some several years ago, and it was a big hit. Also, a wonderful Santa Cruz winemaker, who sadly has since stopped making commercial wine altogether, made a vineyard designated wine solely from the fruit from this vineyard. It was a consistent sell-out! In addition, The Lucas Winery has been using grapes sourced from this block for several years to help create their very popular Lucas Winery Chardonnay.

“Routan Slough” Zinfandel – 15 acres (1988 & 1990)

Rounding out the vineyards of W.D. Shinn Ranch, this Zin is a winner!  The name for this block comes from the naturally occurring slough that runs through the north east corner of the block. It serves as a natural drain if the Mokelumne River floods, which seems very unlikely these days. This block is actually a combination of W.D. Shinn Ranch property and property leased back from the Wells Family next door (World’s Best Neighbors!). The Costamagna clone zinfandel grafted on to old Tokay rootstock served as the start of this vineyard.  Since the old Tokay vines were planted on a 10’x10’ spacing, we inter-planted Costamagna clone on Freedom rootstock in between the old vines to maximize the space and improve production. The early days of this vineyard served to support the White Zin craze of the late 1980’s to late 1990’s.  Since 2007 we have been cultivating this field for red wine, and it has not disappointed. We get a very consistent crop production of 7.5 to 8.5 tons every year, whether it is a big or small crop year. It produces good quality grapes, with excellent color and good sugar content. This field has been delivered to just about every winery around the area, and currently we are proud to sell it to the Gallo Family Winery.