Mule Plane

San Joaquin
Current Owner
J & J Shinn Ranch
Planted by
Great-Great Uncle and Great-Grandfather of John Shinn
Location Notes

Located on the west side of the Lodi AVA in the Mokelumne River sub-AVA, Mule Plane Vineyard is approximately 1300 feet from the river. Being on the west side, the vineyard receives a better exposure to the Delta breeze during the spring and summer months allowing for excellent cooling in addition to the warm days. This makes for great fruit flavors in the grapes! This vineyard is part of the original land homesteaded by our family back in the early 1850s.


m2, Holman Cellars, Thomas Fogarty, Markus Bokisch, Jeremy Wine Co., Arpent LLC.

Historical Producers

Oak Stone Winery – 2000s

C.K. Mondavi

S & L Vineyards/Stokes Bros – Packing and Custom Crush


This is why Carignan is on the comeback as a varietal. Smooth tannins and easy accessibility. Awesome blueberry, strawberry fruity goodness!


“As the story goes…my grandfather told my dad that he remembered seeing his uncle planing this field, with a mule, before it was planted when he was a small boy. We took the name ‘Mule Plane’ from that story. Since my grandfather was born in 1922 we estimate the field was planted somewhere in the 1927-1930 era.” – John Shinn


This vineyard sits on the sandiest spot on the ranch. While the whole thing is Tokay Sandy Loam, this has the best drainage and rooting depth in the area. Since 2016, we have had a huge interest in buying fruit from this vineyard, thus the 6 different winemakers we sold to recently. We have a wait list of others who are interested.

Old Vine Carignan is making a huge comeback for both rosé and red wines so we are always working to improve our farming style. This field was certified Lodi Rules sustainable in 2017. We keep a year-round cover crop on it and try to minimize soil tillage. Prior to this year, when it primarily went to a packer/shipper, we grew more for tonnage (this field still can product 8+ tons/acre). Now we are focusing on getting it down into the 6 tons/acre range through better pruning and shoot thinning practices. All of the replants in this block are self-rooting cuttings from the field. We have no idea what clone or rootstock (if any) was used to plant it back then.

Submitted by
John Shinn