Ever heard of it? You will soon. Carl Money and his family, which owns Pontotoc Vineyard, have big plans to turn this small section of a beautiful Texas highway into a Texas wine destination. Read the front-page San Antonio Express News story by Jennifer McInnis who provides a great overview of the winery, its history and what’s to come. Our group headed to Pontotoc to see first-hand the...
Yes, I really am one of the luckiest people I know. I spend lots of my time enjoying wine and visiting Texas wineries. The best part is the friends I travel with and the friends I make along the way, including the winemakers, winery owners and grape growers in the Texas wine industry. This weekend, Jessica Dupuy of Texas Monthly, Alissa Leehner with SAHMmelier, Margaret Shugart with Wine Roads...
Lenoir - One of the Best in Austin
Lenoir definitely ranks high among my favorite restaurants in Austin. I like the small, but stylish restaurant, always-changing menu focused on local foods, and its distinctive wine list. Out back is a casual area to enjoy a glass of wine while you wait for your table and enjoy music. Inside, there is group seating, individual tables and the bar. The prix-fixe $38 menu for three items...
Texas vs The World: Cabernet Sauvignon
Yes, Texas does make some great Cabernet Sauvignon! Frankly, I was a skeptic so that’s why I attended this week’s Texas Wine and Food Consortium tasting of Texas Cabs compared to Old World classics and some other New World wines. But given my skepticism, I wanted to taste them all blind and thankfully, the TWFC folks obliged my request. Several Texas wines were really nice with...
Laboure-Roi Unoaked Chardonnay
Green apple, pear, hint of peach, and lots of wet stone. A lovely, really lovely, unoaked chardonnay from Macon-Villages in Burgundy. Full-bodied wine with nice acidity with a crisp finish. It caught my eye at HEB where I think it retails for less than $12. Wow. I need to go back and pick up a few more! Clink!
Chillin' with Cowboys and Gauchos
The Wine and Food Foundation of Texas has some killer events, and today’s Cowboys and Gauchos was one of them — super fun and laid back, with great wines and amazing BBQ meats prepared by local chefs. The wines were primarily from Texas and Uruguay, both countries sharing similar climates. More and more Texas wineries are making wines from Uruguay’s Tannat grape —...
Wall Street Journal: Hard Wired to Hate Exercise →
Lucky for me…I am hard-wired to love exercise.
My little sweet one
Yes, that’s what Dolcetto means in Italian and let me tell you, I love this red wine. Lots of black cherry, red plum and hint of pepper on the finish, with soft tannins make this a red wine to pair with pasta or meat. Me, I like it as a red sipper. Duchman Family Winery makes Dolcetto in Texas and it’s one of my favorite Texas reds. Cheers!
I am still in state of euphoria from passing my Certified Sommelier exam on Sunday. Even though this wine study is a hobby for me, I put lots of time and energy into doing as well as I could. I am extremely thankful to my wine study group who pulled me through it — thanks Jessica Dupuy, Matt McGinnis and Margaret Shugart. In Austin, we have an amazing group of sommeliers at different...
Texas Wine Industry in 2013 →
San Antonio Express News wine writer Jennifer McInnis talks with Bobby Cox, president of TWGGA, about the Texas wine industry in 2013. #txwine
New Year's Resolution: Drink Less...and More
I love Lettie Teague’s column today in the Wall Street Journal. I am stealing her New Year’s resolution — to drink less (of the wines I usually drink) and more of those I have neglected. For me, that means drinking more red wine as well as some of the whites she mentions in her story. I applaud her for wanting to drink more local wines (I always enjoy plenty of Texas...
Visualization of America's Wine Industry →
Rob Wile with Business Insider shares this graphic visualization of the U.S. wine industry. As you will see, the industry is increasingly concentrated by big brands.
Are you a Splurge or Scrooge holiday wine buyer? →
CultureMap Austin’s Jessica Dupuy and Matt McGinnis share their favorite holiday wines and a little tit for tat (don’t go there Matt!) on when to splurge or look for value wines. A fun story with some great wine recommendations.
Looking for under $20 sparkling wine? →
Matt McGinnis with “What Are You Drinking?” blog shares his three favorite sparkling wines to have on hand during the holidays.
Texas Monthly Top 20 Wine Picks for 2012
My friend Jessica Dupuy with Texas Monthly has shared her Top 20 favorite Texas wines — and lucky for me, I have tasted most of these. I must admit the Brennan Vineyards Lily, the Duchman Winery Vermentino and Trebbiano and Perissos Roussanne are among my favorite white white wines. For the reds, I am intrigued that two of the Top Reds are Nero D’Avola. I have not tried either...
White Wines for the Holidays? Yes!
Here is an AP article about white wines to try for the holidays — right up my alley! Of course, I have tried the Whole Foods Market whites, and I particularly love the La Piuma Pecorino from Italy and the Domaine de Bernier Chardonnay from the Loire Valley in France. Go out and pick up a white you’ve never had before and let me know what you think!
Big Reds & Bubbles
One of my favorite events by the Food and Wine Foundation of Texas, Big Reds & Bubbles is a wonderful kick-off to the holidays. Last night, I saw good friends and tasted some amazing wines. Here are some of my favs: Copain Pinot Noir Tous Ensemble ($27.99) Copain Pinot Noir Les Voisin ($38.99) Copain Syrah Les Voisin ($33.99) Lange Pinot Noir Three Hills ($47.99) Lange Pinot Noir Reserve...
Texas Tempranillo v The World →
Nice story by #CSW wine study buddy and Texas Monthly wine writer Jessica Dupuy on Tempranillo tasting we attended last night. Lots of great #TXWine Tempranillo.
D Magazine’s Hayley Hamilton share some of her favorite Tempranillos including two #TXwines!
ABJ Slideshow of Hill Country Wineries →
Congrats to Flat Creek Estate, Spicewood Vineyards, and Salt Lick Cellars! #txwine
Tanji Patton Shares Steven Krueger's Top Texas... →
Cycling through the Hills of Texas Wine Country →
Great story on two of my passions: wine and cycling. This writer nailed it on the best places to visit, sleep and eat while cycling through the Hill Country.
Dallas Morning News Top Texas Wine Picks →
With Texas Wine Month right around the corner, why don’t you pick up a Texas wine and give it a try? I LOVE all the wines on this Dallas Morning News list. The Duchman Vermentino (on tap at my local Whole Foods Market bar) is my go-to wine with sushi. Cheers!
Win a trip to Austin and meet Tito of Tito's Vodka
Wine Enthusiast magazine is sponsoring a contest to win a trip for two to Austin that includes a private tour of the Tito’s Vodka distillery with Tito himself. It includes round-trip airfare to Austin, lodging at the hip San Jose Hotel, and $500 in gift certificates to La Condesa, Ranch 616 and The Continental Club. Tito’s Vodka (including the Deep Eddy Sweet Tea Vodka) is hugely...
Danielle de L'Ansee
Really loving this Sauvignon Blanc from the Touraine AOC in the Loire Valley of France. With my wine study, I try and taste varietal wines from different parts of the world to see and taste the differences. Wow…what a really pretty wine. Nice lemon citrus notes with a hint of apricot and green grass. Love the lush mouthfeel combined with zippy acidity. I prefer this style Sauvignon Blanc...
Dry Comal Creek "Bone Dry" French Colombard 2011
My friends at HomeAway presented me with this beauty for my birthday and it remains one of my favorite Texas whites*. The Dry Comal Creek Bone Dry French Colombard is a full-bodied white with tropical notes and at first sniff, you would think it would be sweet. But it’s minerally and dry — just like the label says. *As one might expect, Colombard is not widely grown in Texas. ...
Of course, while in Indy, I wanted to taste some of the local wines and I very much enjoyed the Mallow Run Chambourcin Rose and the Huber Winery Knobstone Cab Franc. The Chambourcin Rose offered lots of strawberry and cherry flavors with a nice dry finish. It was super refreshing and the perfect wine for the evening stroll. Check out the color on this beauty! The Huber Winery Knobstone Cab...
Indy's City Market
During my Indy trip, I visited the City Market, located downtown and across the street from the Indy Bike Hub and YMCA. Talk about a day full of color and sunshine — take a look! For lunch, we were treated to specialties from various City Market vendors including some fabulous (and my favorite) cheeses, salads and sandwiches from Fermenti Artisan. I also particularly enjoyed the...
Dining in Indy
The restaurant scene in Indianapolis is thriving, based on my two dining nights out last week. I raise my glass with a resounding “clink” for two of Indy’s top restaurants. The Libertine is known for its cocktails, and I started my night with the St. Joe Strummer, a concoction of Tequila Blanco, Aperol and Amaro. I enjoyed PEI mussels served in a terrific garlic and red...
Vernaccia, Arneis and Petit-Chablis
FINALLY! Two Italian whites I loved and a thumbs up to Petit-Chablis, too. During my weekend trip to St. Louis, I went to the Frotenac Schnucks to check out their wine collection. This is no grocery store wine. Great wine selection, and I even got a sneak peak at their reserve collection in the back. I picked up a Toscolo Vernaccia di San Gimignano and Vietti Roero Arneis and they did not...
Tour de Vin with Friends
The Wine and Food Foundation of Texas’ Tour de Vin is always one of my favorite events. I usually go with friends to sip and savor all the great wines and food. This year was no exception - I met Kate Lowery there and ran into my wine study buddies Matt (What Are You Drinking blog) and Garrett, as well as Alissa (SAHMmelier blog) and her husband. My favorite wines of the night? Joseph...
Six Wine Regions to Visit →
Fodor’s shares six wine regions to visit this fall — including Texas, Michigan and New York. Let’s go!
Verdejo from Rueda
This is one great wine! Palacio de Bornos Verdejo from Spain. Lots of fruit (citrus, pear), some grassy notes (but not too much) and zingy acidity. LOVE IT. Go get some now…pretty sure I picked this up at HEB for about $20.
From Margaux to Mason County →
Russ Kane with Vintage Texas provides a great overview of the Texas Terroir panel at #TEXSOM.
Dang -- Love this wine!
I nearly finished this bottle of Duchman Family Winery Trebbiano before I remembered to snap a photo and write a short note about it. It’s so refreshing — with a hint of banana (in a good, tropical way) and citrus. Love the crisp, dry finish. An easy-drinking, refreshing summer wine. Cheers! (And yes, the grapes are from the Bingham Family Vineyards! One of Texas’ best...
Lucky me — I tasted this Egelhoff Riesling at the #TEXSOM Grand Tasting and found out that Lake Travis Wine Trader carries it. Picked up a bottle last night - a delightful, refreshing Riesling from Napa. The folks at Egelhoff may not be too wild about my pairing but I am loving this wine with Wheat Thins. Then again, I like most anything with Wheat Thins.
Wine & Peanut Butter
We all know wine is my first love. A close second is peanut butter. Somehow the folks at Planters found out I love peanut butter and sent me some of their new NUT-rition Peanut Butter. This stuff rocks. It has pieces of nuts (of course) and granola, raisins, and cinnamon in it. Before my long runs and rides, I ALWAYS have a piece of toasted Ezekiel 4:9 cinnamon raisin bread with peanut...
I Heart TEXSOM →
TEXSOM is my all-time favorite event of the year. Here is @JDewps story on the Texas Terroir panel.
Summer Whites →
I go straight to the “interesting and miscellaneous” whites on a wine list. See what Lettie Teague of the Wall Street Journal has to say about these beauties.
Cap*Rock Winery Makes a Comeback →
Check out this Texas Monthly story by Jessica Dupuy on the “new” Cap*Rock winery under Cathy Bodenstedt’s leadership. Next time you are in Lubbock, go check them out (and McPherson Cellars and Llano Estacado).
Messina Hof Hill Country Manor Haus
What a delight! Visit Texas Hill Country wineries all day without driving back home to Austin. The new Messina Hof Hill Country offers not only a terrific tasting room, but also five cottages called Manor Haus where you can spend the night. We stayed in the Paris Haus that was comfortably luxurious, with a private living area with big screen TV, wet bar with a microwave and refrigerator...
The New Kid on the Block
Hilmy Cellars is one of the new kids on the Stonewall stretch of wineries on Highway 290 between Johnson City and Fredericksburg. With 4.0 Cellars and Messina Hof as its neighbors, and combined with some of the area’s favorites like Pedernales Cellars, Torre di Pietra, Becker Vineyards and Grape Creek Vineyards, tasting Texas wines has never been easier. Hilmy Cellars is owned by Erik and...
Hye Society Welcomes All
Hye, Texas is just about a stone’s throw from Stonewall (pun intended) in the heart of Texas wine country. William Chris Vineyards sits smack dab in the middle of Hye, offering boutique wines created with quality in mind. Besides making great wine, Bill and Chris also know how to throw a party. They invited some of their Hye Society wine club members and wine bloggers to a night of...
Gruner -- Let me count the ways
Gruner Veltliner, how I do love thee? Let me count the ways. Fruity, crisp, bright, zippy, clean, refreshing, zing, tickles, makes me smile. Yep, this Gruner Veltliner from Franz Etz in Austria is one of my faves for summer..and really, year-round.
Beautiful night for a Cotes du Rhone Rose
It’s a gorgeous night here in Austin to sit outside and I’ve paired this night with this M. Chapoutier 2011 Belleruche Cotes du Rhone Rose and my handsome dog Nick. Beautifully dry rose with hints of strawberry and stone. My kind of wine. See what my friends at Wine Harlots have to say about it!
Back from vacation, which included enjoying lots of great wine at Topsail Beach, NC, I decided to open what will be one of my favorite summer sippers — the McPherson Cellars Les Copains. This white Rhone blend of Viognier, Grenache Blanc and Roussanne is killer. The Viognier gives it a nice floral nose but it jumps with peach and apricot flavors, with beautiful acidity and balance. ...
Albarino in Texas?
Since hearing that McPherson Cellars in Lubbock had made an Albarino wine, I have been anxious to try it. A silver medal winner in the Dallas Morning News and TEXSOM Competition and the New World International Wine Competition, the McPherson Cellars 2011 Albarino Castano Prado Vineyards has lots of fruit aromas (peaches and stone fruit) and nice acid, providing a well-balanced wine. This is my...
If only I was so clever to come up with this title, but I read this and had to share. Chablis is the Unchard-Chard. Tonight I am tasting a 2009 Jean Marc Brocard Chablis that has green apple notes and tons of wet stone minerality and a touch of saltiness, which, yes, I love. Like a Chardonnay, it has some creaminess to it, but it hits you with great acidity on the finish — no buttery...