As I head south from Sisterdale (or you head north from Boerne) on FM 1376, either way we have our sights set for Saint Tryphon Farm & Vineyards – the official winery address is in Boerne, TX. The winery name is taken from Saint Tryphon, the patron saint of grape growers and gardeners who lived in the 3rd century. While a fun and inviting place to stop, it is dedicated to the production of high quality 100% Texas wines. They are wines made from grape varieties that are well-suited to our Texas soils, many of which have lineage from Mediterranean and Iberian shores and are accustom to warmer climes like we have in Texas.
The tasting room and estate vineyard are located just off FM 1376 on a 1890s homestead managed by proprietor, winemaker and sommelier Silouan Bradford. Long hair, short hair, big beard or shaven, no matter, you will recognize Silouan. He is often behind the tasting room bar pouring and talking about his wines. Some are made from the Blanc Du Bois grapes from his own estate vineyard. Others are made from grapes harvested on the Texas high plains from recognized quality properties like Farmhouse Vineyards and Newsom Vineyards. Silouan feels that the Texas High Plains consistently produces the finest quality European vinifera wine grapes in the State. He is continually looking for more grapes from which to make his wines and is also finding high quality grapes closer to home in the Texas Hill Country, as you will see.
Now, for the reason we’re here… The Tasting!
Saint Tryphon 2021 Albariño, “EL JARDIN”, Newsom Vineyards, Texas High Plains
This is something you don’t taste everyday… A platinum award winning wine. This Albariño from Saint Tryphon garnered a Platinum Award from the 2022 Texsom Wine Awards judging. A platinum award, also called by some a “Double Gold”, occurs when all judges on a tasting panel agree that the wine is gold medal worthy. This Albariño a sleek, acid-driven white wine, fermented in stainless steel, equally accommodating for sipping with friends or accompanying seafood and lighter fare at dinner. The bottom line for this wine is it is bright with a delightfully crisp acidity, multifaceted citrus flavors (think lemon, grapefruit and tangerine) and a hint of fresh salt air, followed by a long dry finish.
Saint Triphon 2020 Petite Sirah – Wild Fermentation, Hoover Valley Vineyards, Texas Hill Country.
Silouan’s got a penchant for experimentation with his wines particularly if they go through fermentation with native yeasts – those that reside in the vineyard on the grapes or that just hang around his estate and winery. He’s given this Petite Sirah an added moniker of “Experiment No. 2”.
This wine is dense and inky, charming yet strong, a Petite Sirah drinker’s dream. This is his first effort from Hoover Valley Vineyards in the Texas Hill Country. Silouan even refers to this wine as ”chunky, gritty and serious” referring to its out front tannic structure. Big ripe juicy blackberries come through in the aroma and flavor accompanied with these bold tannins now, but they will soften with years of bottle age. This is a limited production wine (only three barrels made). So, good reason to purchase several bottles to drink now and sample over time.
This wine was made from grapes harvested in late August 2020 and fermented in open-top fermenters on its native yeast and then tucked away in barrel for 18 months.
For those red wine drinkers not familiar with Petite Sirah, this is a good opportunity to experience a fine example from Texas. Petite Sirah is loved for its deeply colored wines with rich black fruit flavors and bold tannins. The grape is related to Syrah and the rare French grape, Peloursin. The French call it “Durif” but this wine is rare outside of California, but its now found in Texas, too.
Photo credits: Saint Tryphon Farm and Vineyards, and VintageTexas.com
Contact Saint Tryphon Farm & Vineyards (click here).
Hours of Operation
Sunday, Friday: 12 PM – 5 PM
Saturday: 11 AM – 6 PM
Tastings are $25 per person and include 5 wines.
Reservations are recommended though not required for both individuals and groups.