Write Off the Vine: Texas Wine News – March 10, 2011

Write Off the Vine: Texas WIne News – March 10, 2011

ON WINE: Budget cuts could be fatal to Texas wine

By Gus Clemens, San Angelo Standard Times

Texas’s effort to balance its budget without exploring revenue options or touching rainy day funds creates casualties, from education to health care to the least of our brethren.

For the Texas wine industry, pain may not be tough but terminal.

The Legislative Budget Board recommends eliminating — not trimming — all funds appropriated to Texas Department of Agriculture supporting Texas’s wine and grape industry.

Texas will eliminate $4.3 million for education, research, and marketing. Valuable personnel and experience will be tossed in the compost heap. Personnel will look for work elsewhere in states competing against Texas. Texas Tech and Texas A&M grape research projects will be major victims.

This when Texas is hitting its wine stride. A 2010 study shows the Texas grape and wine industry pours $1.7 billion annually into Texas economy.

Aided by its modest wine investment, Texas is the nation’s fifth largest producer and fourth largest consumer of wine. Texans drink 95 percent of Texas-made wine. Every Texas bottle benefits Texas economy, not foreign countries like France, Australia, Italy, and California.

More: http://www.gosanangelo.com/news/2011/mar/08/budget-cuts-couldbe-fatal-totexas-wine/?partner=RSS

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Supreme Court Justices Beg Off From Hearing Texas Wine Case

By Lee RossFoxNews.com

Oenophiles may want to raise a glass in sorrow over the Supreme Court’s decision not to examine a Texas law some believe is too restrictive when it comes to who can ship bottles of wine to Lone Star State residents.

The justices announced Monday they will not give further consideration to whether the law, which allows in-state retailers to fulfill mail order shipments but prohibits out-of-state shops from doing the same, is constitutional.

It’s a nearly identical issue that divided the court six years ago. The justices, in a 5-4 decision, invalidated a similar law prohibiting wineries from shipping their products across state lines. The court concluded the law violated the Commerce Clause.”

More: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2011/03/07/supreme-court-justices-beg-hearing-texas-wine-case/#ixzz1GCXFCeRN

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Texas Wineries Ask “What Do Hispanic Wine Drinkers Want?”

Hanna Raskin, Dallas Observer

​Hispanics represent a growing share of Texas’ wine drinking population, but wineries are still grappling with how to pitch their products to them.

“No information is available about the Hispanic wine market,” Natalia Kolyesnikova, assistant director of the Texas Wine Marketing Research Institute told attendees at last week’s annual meeting of the Texas Wine and Grape Growers Association.

The institute last year conducted a preliminary study, convening three focus groups to answer questions about how, when, where and why Hispanic consumers drink wine. The responses were wildly diverse, suggesting wine sellers err in treating the state’s Hispanic population as a monolith.

More: http://blogs.dallasobserver.com/cityofate/2011/03/texas_wineries_ask_what_do_his.php

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Deep in the Heart of Texas’ Wine Country

by Dallas Wine Chick

I recently was invited to attend an event in Fort Worth for the Texas Hill Country Wineries at the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame.  The session began with a panelist seminar of winemakers that included John Rivenbaugh from Bending Branch Winery, Gill Bledsoe from Pillar Bluff Vineyard and David Kuhlken from Pedernales Cellars who discussed a variety of subjects as related to producing wine in Texas.

Fave wines highlighted by the Dallas Wine Chick were:

Duchman Family Winery, 09 Montepulciano, ($15) this was a red wine full of stone fruit, slight oak and a bit of spice at the finish.  It was a Texas wine that is actually possible to drink in August Texas weather.

Duchman Family 09 Vermentino ($10), a Texas patio wine that is floral with hints of pear, but balanced with some minerality.  Lively and light for patio weather.

Perdernales Tempranillo ($29.99), a little high priced for my threshold for a Texas wine, but with soft tannins, an earthiness and cherry notes that make it well matched for Texas game.  The highlight of my tasting note was simple – “Nice” with an exclamation point.

Singing Water Vineyards Reserve Merlot/Cabernet Blend ($24.95), also priced on the high range, this was a deep red wine full of stone fruit, raspberry and vanilla.

More comments at: http://www.dallaswinechick.com/deep-in-the-heart-of-texas-wine-country/

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For great wines, food, music and shopping in the beautiful city of Mt. Vernon, Texas right off I-30. Taste your way through the diverse wines of East Texas. From the sweet to the savory, it will all be there. Save the Date:

May 21, 2011, 10 am – 7 pm

The Piney Woods Wine Trail is the second largest in Texas and growing. Sixteen wineries from East Texas will be on hand for wine tastings and any questions you have. Wine will be sold by the glass or the bottle.

More: http://thegrapesaroundtexas.com/2011/01/30/piney-woods-wine-trail/

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Spring is in the Air…Wine & Wildflower Trail April 1-3 & 8-10, 2011

It’s been a chilly winter and we’re all ready for Spring…wildflowers, warmth of the sun and of course, the Wine and Wildflower Trail!  Get out and take a trip to all 27 participating wineries during this picturesque trail, April 1-3 and 8-10 while you take in the beauty of the Hill Country and the yummy, award winning wines from your Hill Country Wineries.

Have you ever had the thought of starting your own vineyard?  Texas Hill Country Wineries is giving you the chance to start small!  With each ticket to the Wine & Wildflower Trail you will receive one dormant grapevine to take home and plant in your yard.  We will provide you with planting and care instructions so you can test your green thumb, put life into your garden and within a few years…enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Until then, come out and enjoy the fruits of our labor with a minimum of 1 and up to 3 complimentary tastes from each winery and a 15% discount on 3 bottle purchases.  As always, take home a packet of Wildflower Seeds so you can bring the beauty of the Hill Country home with you.

More and Tickets at: http://www.texaswinetrail.com/events.html

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Love to taste, talk and tweet about Texas wines and where they are in the global scheme for wines. After all that's the only way they will reach the full potential.

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