Write Off the Vine: Texas Wine News – September 1, 2012
The Best Wine and Wine Makers in Texas
By Ben Carpenter, TexanPost
The long history of Texas wine begins in the 1600s with Spanish missionaries cultivating grapes in an area now known as El Paso. In the 1800s, European settlers started Texas vineyards from grapevine cuttings that they brought from their homelands. These are some of the best wineries and vineyards Texas has to offer.
Val Verde Winery – In 1883, Frank Qualia formed Val Verde Winery, which is one of the oldest, bonded wineries still operating in Texas. The Qualia family have owned and operated these Texas vineyards since 1883, boasting more than 125 years of operation and three generations of Texas winemakers. This winery has firmly established itself as part of Texas culture and is definitely worth a visit. Their wine selection varies season to season and can be purchased at the winery itself. Val Verde produces Chardonnay, Sweet Red Table Wine, Sauvignon Blanc, Texas Rose, Muscat Canelli, Cabernet Sauvignon, Sangiovese, Pinot Noir and Lenoir.
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GrapeFest 2012 – A Wine Experience
GrapeFest, the largest wine festival in the Southwest, is held in September and features an incredible array of wine tastings, food pairings and other entertainment including the traditional Vintner’s Auction and the Texas Wine Tribute Gala – a black-tie formal affair for gourmet food lovers and wine enthusiasts. GrapeFest attendees can also vote for their favorite Texas wines at the People’s Choice Wine Tasting Classic.
GrapeFest 2012 is located in Historic Grapevine, Texas, located between Dallas and Fort Worth, is a go-to destination when planning a trip to North Texas! Step back in time in Historic Downtown Grapevine with its collection of shops, restaurants, and art galleries. Enjoy fantastic hotels and resorts, great attractions for the entire family, fabulous shopping opportunities, outstanding dining at over 200 restaurants, winery tasting rooms, a wide variety of outdoor recreational activities, award-winning festivals and events and much more. Grapevine has something for everyone.
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Valley Mills Vineyards
By Jeff Cope, TXwineLover
Valley Mills Vineyards is located in Waco and is owned by Dr. Bill Peper and Amy Peper along with John and Kandi Bagnasco. The winery was opened November 2010.
I have visited Valley Mills Vineyards a couple times and the last time I visited I took the opportunity to take a wine class led by Bill Peper. The class was called Vine to Wine and it was a tasting of Valley Mills Vineyards Texas wines along with Dr. Peper explaining the process it took from vineyard to winemaking and finally to the finished product. There are two classes left and if you live near Waco, I would recommend you take one of the classes. The class dates left are September 11 and 16, 2012.
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Birthday Celebration and Grape Stomp, William Chris Vineyard, Hye, Texas!
Birthday Girl and her Sister are having a blast at the William Chris Vineyard Grape Stomp in Hye Texas.
Their tour also included a visit to Grape Creek Winery, Four Point O Cellars and Pedernales Cellars.
Enjoying Handmade Chocolate Truffles during their Wine Tasting at Pedernales Cellars, complimentary of course!
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Texas Wine: Going Against the Grain; Making Chenin Blanc with Kim McPherson
by Jessica Dupuy, Eat My Words/TexasMonthly
What do you do when one of the best winemakers in the state invites you to make wine with him and his daughter? You say, yes! Which is exactly what I did when Kim McPherson of McPherson Cellars suggested I join him and his daughter, Kassandra for his first ever attempt at bottling a dry Chenin Blanc.
And while it’s origin in the rather cool, Maritime/Continental climate of the Loire Valley would make it an odd fit for Texas—particularly in the dry, red clays of the High Plains—for some strange reason, it grows almost like a weed here.
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Landon Winery Wine Club Pick Up
By The Grapes Around Texas
This month is wine club pick up month. Well it was at the first of the month and we were a week behind getting up there. The club selected wines this time was red, Landon’s 2010 Meritage Reserve. We did not take a taste this time, but chose to enjoy the noon day spring like weather with a glass of Landon’s 2010 Pinot Noir for my wife and a nice glass of the 2010 Tempranillo Reserve. The 2010 Tempranillo Reserve won the Silver medal at the 2012 Lone Star International Wine Competition. The grapes were grown in the Texas High Plains from the Bingham Family Vineyards. This wine I found a truly great red wine for summer with cherry and plum flavors and a nice balanced tannic finish. I think I got more of the dark fruit than the plum. Then again my pallet is not of the professional level. I think this just might be my new favorite summer drinking red wine.
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Texas Wine Trail
by G. Elaine Acker
Texas wines have come a long way over the last few years, and there are now more than 30 vineyards scattered across the Hill Country. If you like wine and you’re taking your camper out anywhere in the Texas Hill Country over the next few weeks, check out the wine tastings, grape stomps and live music at several of the vineyards. According to Texas Hill Country Wineries, there are 17 events next Saturday alone! Out of curiosity, I looked at the vineyard map, and then checked out the Texas State Parks map too. There are plenty of vineyards with great camping spots nearby!
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Book: The Wineslinger Chronicles – Texas on the Vine
Like Texas wine, now read about the people, places and history of the emerging wine region called Texas. Get a copy of Russ Kane’s best-selling book, The Wineslinger Chronicles – Texas on the Vine, available online at: www.wineslinger.net.