On Wine Road Route 290 on a corner lot in downtown Johnson City, Texas, you may have driven past Farmhouse Vineyards Marketplace, but never stopped. Parked on this lot is a shiny and stylish Airstream trailer that co-owner Katy Jane Seaton lovingly calls, “West Texas Tipsy” now repurposed as a tasting trailer. Tipsy sits under the oaks and strings of party lights securing a perfect space to enjoy libations, music, food, and moments shared in appreciation with friends, family, summer breezes, and of course Texas wine.
Farmhouse Vineyards calls the Texas High Plains (not too far from Lubbock) home where it has acres upon acres of red west Texas dirt planted in grapevines. However, if you are not planning on making it to the panhandle any time soon, The Farmhouse Vineyards Marketplace and Tipsy Trailer are the next best place to be.
This Farmhouse tasting started when I was presented with three 375 ml bottles of wine: one clear, one amber and one blue, but all bearing the same black and white label that read, ”Lady Bird, Farmhouse Vineyards, Texas High Plains overlaying the words ”West Texas”. The different colored bottles with similar labels was at first a bit confusing. Well, it took Katy Jane just a moment to set me straight.
She said, “It’s our Farmhouse Vineyards ‘Lady Bird’ dry white wine that features our Malvasia Bianca; we were the first in Texas to plant it. All these bottles are of the same wine, but the three colored bottles show the tri/color of what we call a ’Wine Bouquet’. This wine is dedicated to Bunny Becker & Lady Bird Johnson. They were two iconic Texas women who changed the landscape of Texas forever.”
Even before I came to Texas, when I was a schoolboy in the 1960s I learn about our country’s then First Lady, Lady Bird Johnson, and her vision and passion to make the world better and more beautiful place – one wildflower at a time. I didn’t meet Bunny Becker until after she and her husband Dr. Richard Becker started Becker Vineyards and their winery in 1996. I remember her best for her gracious congeniality and her support the growing Texas Hill Country wine region. Her passing in 2019 saddened me along with many, but remembrances of her boundless energy and friendly manner remain with us all.
Farmhouse Vineyards Lady Bird is a friendly and refreshing dry white blend featuring Malvasia Bianca, blended with Roussanne and Orange Muscat that has rich aromas of pears, honeysuckle, and hints of mineral on the finish. Per Farmhouse Vineyards, ”This wine is meant for springtime gardening and patio nights” to which I added summer patios and picnics.
I was invited to the tasting room by old friend Katy Jane Seaton, but was told that they were sold out of Lady Bird. The good news, however, is you can still taste their remarkable Malvasia Bianca. You can grab a taste, glass or bottle of Farmhouse Vineyards ”Boyfriend” sparkling wine made from 100% Malvasia Bianca. It’s oh so good, especially as an accompaniment to their charcuterie board.
The tasting room is a comfortable place to stop for a sip on the Route 290 Trail and explore Farmhouse Vineyards’ growing wine list. It has a bar area and several private and semi-private sitting areas to relax, take the load off your feet and mind. And, who knows you might find a particular wine, special treasure or even a hill country souvenir.
Unexpectedly, while there I found a special wine. It was Farmhouse Vineyards Sirah Syrah, a blend of Petite Sirah and Syrah, two grapes with a similar name but a different spelling. It was deep, dark and rich with juicy plum, blackberry preserve, chocolate-covered cherry and a hint of black pepper.
Farmhouse Vineyards is the collaboration of the Seaton’s & Furgeson’s, a brother-sister combo multi-generational farm family that together farms 7,000 acres of row crops and 4 vineyards at 3 sites in the Texas High Plains…. I almost forgot the 2,000 head of Dorper Ewes.
As they describe it, “With 118 acres of wine grapes of all ages located in West Texas within the Texas High Plains AVA, you could call us ‘Committed’ growers.” They have an impressive client list of some of the largest and most distinguished wineries in the state to some of the best smaller boutique wineries. And, you know what, they are also committed to making some very fine wines under their own Farmhouse Vineyards label.
Farmhouse Vineyards Marketplace Tasting Room & Tipsy Trailer Open 7 Days a week!
•Monday – Thursday 12-6 PM
•Friday & Saturday 11-6 PM
•Sunday 12-5 PM
Located at: 402 East Main StreetJohnson City, Texas 78636T | (830) 282-4249
Click here for more information on Farmhouse Vineyards.
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