The two major growing regions in Texas are Texas High Plains and Texas Hill Country.
Texas Hill Country AVA is located mid-state and is the largest AVA in the state with over sixty producing wineries and is considered the center for Texas wine industry. Of the nine million acres in this area, approximately 800 acres are planted vineyards. The climate is humid and more subtropical during the growing season so fewer vineyards exist here. The soil is mostly limestone but there is lots of rocky soil as well. The Texas Wine Trail is here and tourism is growing in leaps and bounds.
Grape varieties abound such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, Syrah, Tempranillo, Sangiovese, Riesling, Picpoul, Viognier and Souzão.
I tasted single-varietal and blended wines from fourteen wineries that were represented at the event. Speaking in generalities, the red wines from the High Plains have concentrated flavors with soft to medium tannins. The whites are quite aromatic with delicate flavors and low acidity. Reds from the Hill Country tend to be a bit more tannic, but I find they also have more depth. The whites are aromatic with nice minerality.
The wines of Texas are impressive. All the owners and winemakers that I met transferred their enthusiasm to me when describing their wine. As I was told at the seminar, “making wine started as a ‘lifestyle’ for many, but now it is their ‘life’s passion”. And it truly shows! I look forward to visiting Texas Wine Country soon.
Here are links to the 14 wineries. I encourage you to explore, read their stories and hopefully order a bottle or two or three of wine. At a later date, I’ll go into more depth on some of the wineries and review their wines as well.
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