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A Tour of Texas Wine Country

We spent the four-day weekend in Fredricksburg to celebrate my birthday. For those who don't know, Fredricksburg is an old German settlement in the beautiful Texas Hill Country, NW of San Antonio. It is a premium tourist destination for those who love German and Texas culture, wine, wildflowers, shopping, and relaxation. We stayed at a lovely bed and breakfast that was actually an old cabin on a small converted farm. We had our own cabin with a loft and a full size jacuzzi outside. It was wonderful.

One of the highlights of our trip was our visit to Grape Creek Vineyards. Over the last 20 years, the Hill Country has become a major wine center. Grape Creek is one of the newer wineries, and we were able to tour the facilities and enjoy a tasting of their specialty wine straight from the barrels. We are both new wine afficianados, so we learned a lot from our tour. They showed us how the wine is fermented, processed, and bottled. It was really cool. I know wine is complex, which is one of the reasons I find it so fascinating, but I had no idea how the winemakers so carefully control the fermentation temperatures, the types of barrels that the reds ferment in, and the mix of flavors. I am on my way to becoming a true wine connoisieur, but I can't yet afford to be a wine snob.

Here are a few things I have learned about wine over the last year:

No two wines are alike.
Cheap wine is sometimes really good, but when it isn't...
Red wine makes me blush.
Wines with the cool labels taste better.
I still am pretty clueless about wine-food pairings, but I have learned that wines from certain countries match well with the foods from those countries. For example, Argentine Malbec goes well with Argentine steak.
Speaking of Malbec, Argentines know that they are the best at everything, but when it comes to wine, they really are the best.
Movies about wine and wine snobs are still not enjoyable to watch.
Texas wines are great because the vineyards are small, personal, and creative.
Trying to buy wine at a specialty store is a huge task for an indecisive person like me.
Wine is always best by candlelight with the one you love.

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2 comments:

Sarah B. said...

We love Fredericksburg! You'll have to email me and tell me where you stayed, we go at least once a year!

IT Man said...

We like candlelight dinners as well -- with wine, French bread and gouda cheese.

We now purchase wine online, quality rated at 90 or more and with costs $10 or less.

IT Man
http://www.christianegalitarians.org

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