For those who have been reading BlogAboutWine.com for years you know that we love exploring new wine regions. We’ve covered up and down the coast of California from Sonoma to Paso Robles, Napa to Santa Ynez. Now we find ourselves exploring one of the newest up and coming wine regions, and no it’s not California, we’re heading to the Lone Star state to explore Texas wine country.
We recently moved to Austin, TX so this is now our local wine region which is why we aren’t limiting our review to a single blog post. First let’s talk a little bit about the region. Texas wine country is centered around Fredericksburg, a small town in Central Texas with history dating back to the 1800’s.
Fredericksburg wasn’t started with wine in mind, instead it initially served as a town for German immigrants coming to the United States. Over time the region has become one of the top five wine producing regions in the US and while it has lots of room to grow it’s been nice to check it out during what we’re sure will be considered the “early days”.
Our first stop in Texas wine country is what most people told us is one of the best winery in Texas, Becker Vineyards. It was a bit of a cold and stormy day but that didn’t stop us from heading to the tasting room and sampling what Becker has to offer.
There’s no doubt that Becker has put great care into their property and the tasting room is no exception. Surrounded by nicely manicured grounds and vines just about everywhere you look you it’s easy to gorget that you’re in Central Texas. While the tasting room was relatively crowded when we arrived the staff was quick and courteous, the southern charm that makes Texas so welcoming definitely came across almost instantly.
Now for the most important part of the experience, the wine. To start we tasted two of Becker’s best Cabernet’s and with a pallet attuned to some of the great California reds we were ready for anything. Unfortunately both Cabernets fell flat with very little complexity and a 1-2 second finish that left us wanting more. Both cabs were also incredibly tannic which made us think they could probably use a few more years to develop.
Digging a bit deeper we asked what varietal the region is the most well-known for. It turns out that Tempranillo grows the best in the region and so we moved-onto the Becker Tempranillo. This was a pleasant surprise, spicy, dry, and with a much longer finish than the Cabernet, this is what we had been waiting for.
We tried a few other wines from Becker and while we definitely appreciate what an outstanding job they have done getting Texas on the wine map, it’s pretty clear there is a lot of room for improvement. Right now if you want a wine that can stand-up to some what you’ll find in California go Tempranillo or go home.
Stay-tuned for Part 2 as our adventures in Texas wine country continue! As always, if there are wineries that you think we should visit don’t hesitate to mention them in the comment section below.