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Visiting a Texas Vineyard

Updated on January 16, 2015

Experiencing the Fruit of the Vine

Are you up for a trip to the Texas wine country, a get-a-way sure to give your spirits a lift? If so, a great adventure awaits you at any one of the many Texas vineyards located throughout the state. The intrigue of experiencing and tasting many varieties of wine, all blended and aged to perfection brings pleasure and joy to your visit.

However one thing is for sure deep in the heart of Texas, each sip will acquaint you with a pure Texas taste often described as boot-stompin, spur kickin, cowboy hat tipping good! Enjoy and sip a spell while you relax in the beauty found way down in the Texan wine country.

The Place to Taste

The almost 100-acre vineyard includes a comfortable wine tasting room fashioned in restaurant style. However, if you prefer to enjoy your wine tasting in the open breeze, outside seating is also available where you can drink your wine and gaze upon the vast acres of growing grapes. The grapevines provide a beautiful landscape of color and diversity to enhance your view.

The Fabulous Outside View

A Great Place to Just Sip & Relax!
A Great Place to Just Sip & Relax!

Relax and enjoy the romantic beauty of visiting a vineyard, nestled in the gorgeous hill country of central Texas.

Vineyards of Texas

Texas Hill Country: A Food and Wine Lover's Paradise,
Texas Hill Country: A Food and Wine Lover's Paradise,

A guide to the unique wine produced in the Texas Hill Country.

 

Baby Grapes in the Springtime - These still have months of growing ahead to reach maturity for the wine process.

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Very early beginnings of fuzzy baby grapes
Very early beginnings of fuzzy baby grapes
Very early beginnings of fuzzy baby grapes

Mature Grapes from a Previous Season

The Wine Making Equipment & Process

Just beyond the wine tasting room, situated in a perfect temperature zone, you will discover the actual location where the magic is performed. A giant press squeezes out the juice. The juice is stored in huge stainless steel containers in another step. Then the wine is aged in wooden barrels. And when time has performed its part, the wine is bottled and labeled, ending this magic process that transforms luscious sweet grapes into lively grape spirits also known as chardonnay, merlot, cabernet sauvignon, plus two other "Totally Texas" table wine varieties called Rustler’s Red and Sunset.

Making the Perfect Texas Wine is a Process - Grape Press, to stainless steel vats, to wooden barrels ...

Click thumbnail to view full-size
This grape press separates the juice from the grapes.Stainless-steel storage--a step in the wine making process.Wooden barrel storage.The time consuming process, leading the "aged to perfection."
This grape press separates the juice from the grapes.
This grape press separates the juice from the grapes.
Stainless-steel storage--a step in the wine making process.
Stainless-steel storage--a step in the wine making process.
Wooden barrel storage.
Wooden barrel storage.
The time consuming process, leading the "aged to perfection."
The time consuming process, leading the "aged to perfection."

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Experiencing the Beauty of a Great Place to Be - Loving Today--Just My Husband & Me

The Saturday in May when I experienced the outdoor wonder of this Texas vineyard, my husband and I were the only two people there. My husband is a business acquaintance of the vineyard owners, who now reside out-of-state. The vineyard needed some routine maintenance and repair work done, so my husband and I volunteered a Saturday to help out. And even though we were there to work, from 9:00 am to sunset (around 8:30 pm); it was a real day of adventure and learning. The work we accomplished pertained mainly to the irrigation system. At the end of the day, my only complaint was aching, tired feet from too much walking and exploration of a beautiful, enchanting, grape-growing slice of heaven.

Our day was filled with abundant sunshine and also, as you can see, abundant rain clouds too. There was even a downpour that lasted for about half an hour. It was a perfect day and we were thankful for the rain since it kept the temperature comfortable. It is not unusual in Texas to experience many forms of weather in one day, whether it be snow, sunshine, wind, torrential rainfall, or just a mild rain shower.

A Surprise Nestled in the Grass - Almost Undetectable Until it Jumped Up!

Walking along and checking the irrigation timers, I did not see a baby deer hiding in the grass under the grapevine. Unknowingly, I moved towards it. And it jumped up, hopped through the fence, and ran away! Wow! Wish I would have had my phone in-hand to grab such a perfect picture!

Luckily, I got another chance later that day. I noticed this sleeping baby deer before it became aware of my presence. Therefore, I clicked this photo before it reacted and ran away.

This baby deer was no bigger than a medium-sized dog. It was so cute!

The great state of Texas is the fifth largest wine producer in America.

I Prefer Wine that Tastes Sweet.

Part of the pay for working at the vineyard was a case of wine. But did I mention that my husband and I are best described as “teetotalers”? However, we have enjoyed some of the wine with meals and shared some with our children. Don’t worry; the wine will not go to waste! However, I have learned from tasting many different varieties of wine, that my favorite wine is the sweeter variety, which is definitely unusual for my palette.

Our Gift of Wine from the Vineyard

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Sweet Llano Estacado Wine Grown in Texas

NV Llano Estacado Vintage Cellar select Port 750 mL
NV Llano Estacado Vintage Cellar select Port 750 mL

Some of the best wine I have tasted is a red variety labeled Llano Estacado produced from a Texas vineyard near Lubbock, Texas.

 
Rabbit Wine and Beverage Bottle Stoppers with Grip Top (Assorted Colors, Set of 4)
Rabbit Wine and Beverage Bottle Stoppers with Grip Top (Assorted Colors, Set of 4)

Very helpful in keeping your wine fresh. These fit snuggly inside the bottle allowing little air to invade the wine bottle.

 

A Little History of the Texas Vineyard - Texas Knows How to Nurture "The Fruit of the Vine"

*Vineyards in Texas and the wine producing process dates way back to the 1600's, introduced by Spanish missionaries, who began cultivating grapes near El Paso, Texas.

*In the 1800's, European settlers began vineyards in South and Central Texas with grape cuttings brought over from their native countries.

*The oldest bonded winery currently in operation is found in Del Rio, Texas; It was started in 1883 by Frank Qualia.

*In 1900, at the turn of the century, Texas had 25 thriving winery operations.

*1919 Prohibition forces all wineries to close down.

*By 1933, prohibition was repealed and Texas wineries resumed operation but on a smaller scale.

*1986 Llano Estacado winery won a prestigious double gold award at the San Francisco Fair Wine Competition. This award put Texas wine on the world stage.

*The Texas wineries all across the state continued to grow . . .and by 2007 Texas had over 120 wineries with annual revenue of $1 billion.

I had such a fabulous time at the beautiful vineyard that I just had to share my adventurous, journey of joy with all of you. I would love to know about any wine adventures you have experienced and/or what kind of wine you prefer and why?

Please share your thoughts here:

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    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 2 years ago from Canada

      I've been on a wine tour once. Some day maybe I'll get to visit a Texas vineyard.

    • hgb282 profile image

      hgb282 3 years ago

      I didn't associate wine or vineyards with Texas before I read this article. 120 wineries and $1 billion wow. Looks like a beautiful place to visit too!

    • RobertConnorIII profile image

      Robert Connor 3 years ago from Michigan

      Did not know texas was ranked 5th!

    • MelanieKaren profile image

      Melanie Wilcox 3 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      I love vineyards and wineries. -actually everything about wine -histories and the art of creating it. Congratulations on your LotD feature and for sharing your experience and photos. The photos are all very lovely.

    • asereht1970 profile image

      asereht1970 3 years ago

      Congrats on the LOTD. Very interesting lens.

    • shellys-space profile image

      Shelly Sellers 3 years ago from Midwest U.S.A.

      Your visit to the vineyard in Texas looks like a wonderful trip!

    • DLeighAlexander profile image
      Author

      DLeighAlexander 3 years ago

      Thank you all for commenting; I appreciate hearing from you. It's great to receive feedback from my Squidoo buddies!

    • kclowblog profile image

      kclowblog 3 years ago

      Wine in Dallas, I had lived in Dallas for a while and had no clue it produces wine. Love to visit and taste these wines. Who know, I might even start one winery myself and drink half of them.

    • Charito1962 profile image

      Charito Maranan-Montecillo 3 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      The grapes sure look good! But I like them seedless.

    • JoanieMRuppel54 profile image

      Joanie Ruppel 3 years ago from Keller, Texas

      @Roger Hackney: I have a friend who owns Lawrence Dunham Winery in AZ.

    • JoanieMRuppel54 profile image

      Joanie Ruppel 3 years ago from Keller, Texas

      Thanks for the tip on this Dallas winery. I live in Tarrant County and will just have to trot over to Big D and check it out!

    • profile image

      sybil watson 3 years ago

      I had no idea that Texas is the 5th largest producer of wine in the US. I love going to the Napa and Sonoma valleys in California and enjoying the wine tasting with friends. Congratulations on your LOTD!

    • Heidi Vincent profile image

      Heidi Vincent 3 years ago from GRENADA

      Congratulations on winning the LOTD! I enjoyed the vineyard tour :)

    • Roger Hackney profile image

      Roger Hackney 3 years ago from Arizona

      Arizona has its fair share of wineries too.

    • MJ Martin profile image

      MJ Martin aka Ruby H Rose 3 years ago from Washington State

      Congrats on LOTD. I never new Texas had wine vineyards too. This one is quite beautiful. Lots of great information too.

    • Natalie W Schorr profile image

      Natalie W Schorr 3 years ago

      Well deserved LotD

    • astevn816 lm profile image

      astevn816 lm 3 years ago

      thank you for the wonderful lens. It made me thirsty

    • topclimb lm profile image

      topclimb lm 3 years ago

      This is a wonderful lens. I lived south of the bay area, Morgan Hill, in CA. for years and had vineyards very near my home. The wine country around Napa was just a day trip away. So, over the years, many great and fun wines were sampled. I have never tried a wine from Texas, but I will now! Congrats on LoTD... :-)

    • BarbRad profile image

      Barbara Radisavljevic 3 years ago from Templeton, CA

      I live in California wine country and all my neighbors are vineyards. I have a wonderful view of the vineyard next door as it carries on its activities year round. Our vine country is not as flat as what you've shown here. Wine is the most important industry in North San Luis Obispo County where I live. Congrats on LOTD.

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Terrific lens. Congratulations on getting LotD!

    • SusanDeppner profile image

      Susan Deppner 3 years ago from Arkansas USA

      We have vineyards here in Arkansas, too, and it's an important industry. Very interesting visit! Congratulations on your Lens of the Day honors today!

    • delia-delia profile image

      Delia 3 years ago

      Congratulations on LOTD! Very nice and interesting lens. My youngest daughter and her boyfriend just came back from a trip to Napa CA. Vineyards...and we just got back from New Mexico, I was surprised to see vineyards there. The most beautiful vineyards I've seen was along the River in Germany and France...as well as delicious tasting wine.

    • linfcor profile image

      Linda F Correa 3 years ago from Spring Hill Florida

      Great Job ! I did not know that there were vuneyards in Texas. Congrats on your LOTD

    • Nithya Venkat profile image

      Nithya Venkat aka Vellur 3 years ago from Dubai

      Great post, enjoyed the read.

    • profile image

      gettingyoumoney 3 years ago

      Lovely LOTD. I enjoy this post very much, since I love wines. My favorite is Cabernet S.

    • captainj88 profile image

      Leah J. Hileman 3 years ago from East Berlin, PA, USA

      Lovely place. I enjoy visiting vineyards quite a bit.

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 3 years ago from Colorado

      I had no idea Texas ranked so high in terms of wine production in the states. Several years ago I did visit one of the Hill Country wineries. It was very impressive and an enjoyable way to spend a Saturday. Congrats on LotD!

    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 3 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      Well done LOTD! I love wines and finding new vineyards.

    • Merrci profile image

      Merry Citarella 3 years ago from Oregon's Southern Coast

      Congratulations on Lens of the Day! A lovely lens with great photos. Enjoyed touring with you!

    • esmonaco profile image

      Eugene Samuel Monaco 3 years ago from Lakewood New York

      What a wonderful tour, thanks and Congratulations on LOTD!!!

    • profile image

      anonymous 3 years ago

      Great Len`s