Recently my wife bought two bottles of Big House Red at Trader Joes in Sacramento. It was the most recent vintage, likely 2009 and they were in her words, "horrible" with the second bottle worse than the first. What I didn't realize was that Bonny Doon had in the past few years sold off the "Big House Red" and "Big House White" brands to negociant who produces lots of wine under different catchy brand names.
Well, thankfully I was able to restore her faith that at one time the "Big House Red" was a rival to "Reds" by Laurel Glen or the Marrietta Cellars Old Vine Red. Those three are actually made with grapes that are quality, and blended to be wine, not something just vinefied and put in a bottle.
The 2000 Big House Red (by Bonny Doon) was full of spicy flavors, deep and rich, layered with the kind of old vine red flavors you would expect. It was a great wine to go with spicy turkey chilli that I made, and showed that when a good winemaker works with a field blend of grapes or a hodgepodge of different batches of grapes that a good wine could be made.