Get to know your wines by visiting wine-tasting rooms in Texas.
Anyone who enjoys a social life might want to attend wine tastings, especially if you’re friends are, but you haven’t started. You’ll most likely go with friends, chit-chat with more than just your friends, and have a lot of fun. Plus, it’s the perfect way to learn about wines and find your favorite. Today, we are talking about visiting wine-tasting rooms in Texas. Texas is a friendly state and, thus, has friendly wine-tasting rooms all over the state.
• What Is A Wine Tasting Room?
Did you know that a wine-tasting room is different than a winery? Yes, a wine-tasting room doesn’t make wine on the property, nor would it have a vineyard on site. It’s just a building that sells wines by the glass or bottle and offers wine tastings.
Now, a winery may have wine tasting available and sometimes has a vineyard where they grow grapes to make their own wine. But some wineries and tasting rooms buy their wine from other places and has it shipped in.
• What To Expect At A Wine-Tasting Room
While some wineries or tasting rooms will have a portfolio of five wines, others will have portfolios of 30. At one time, a New York winemaker produced 80 different wines between two wineries. It would be highly unusual that any visitor would taste all 30 wines. So, the attendant tries to identify the type of wine a guest prefers, whether sweet/dry or red/white, in a tasting room.
Some tasting rooms will let you choose your own wines from a list, whereas others will have a list of their tastings. Every tasting room is different. There are usually five different samples to taste. Again, all tasting rooms differ in the amount of tastings you receive. It’s very much interesting to go to these types of places.
Behind the tasting counter is at least one attendant pouring small, one-ounce tastes of wines. For fun, some tasting rooms sell Texas wine-related merchandise. I always browse, and sometimes I find fun stuff to buy.
I am partial to wine-tasting rooms that make their own wines. They will have a winery and vineyard somewhere else, like Farmhouse Vineyard Wine Tasting Room in Johnson City, TX. Their vineyard and winery are in Brownfield (Lubbock area), and they only serve wines they produce which are Texas wines. Some tasting rooms will also sell other wines other than their own. And some will sell all kinds of wines – Texas Wines, California Wines, and wines from other countries – none of which is their own.
For instance, Three Vino Winery (pictured above) is a wine-tasting room in Roanoke, TX. They don’t make their wines, so they sell other wine producers’ wines. This type of place won’t know enough about the wines they sell unless a wine distributor can talk to the guests about the wines they sell in the wine-tasting room. So take your pick!
• Reasons To Visit Wine-Tasting Rooms In Texas
First, friendliness counts, location also counts, pet-friendly, kid-friendly, food and good wine are the best reasons to visit.
1. It’s A Friendly Atmosphere
Texas is known as the “friendship” state, and most of us are friendly. Well, people serving wine are friendly – or should be. I don’t think I’ve ever met anyone working in a wine-tasting room not to be friendly. Some may not have the best personality to socialize with people, but no one I’ve ever met is rude and unfriendly at any Texas wine-tasting room.
Meet great people behind the wine-tasting counter and enjoy the camaraderie of other visitors.
Friendliness is just as important as hard work. Without the hospitality, the wine ceases to mean little. The social part of wine is as important as pairing food with wine. It’s sometimes all about where you are and who you’re with that makes wine taste good. True!
2. Discover Wines You Won’t Find Anywhere Else
You’ll discover wines that are not available at local wine shops.
Unfortunately for the consumer, wine shops are limited to their shelf space and the wineries the distributor deals with. If you’re into only Texas wines, this leaves the consumer out of touch except by using the Internet.
If you find the wines you love, I highly suggest becoming a member. Members will get certain wines every month. Some ship, but for the most part, picking up your member order is usually how it’s done. That way, you can enjoy a glass while there!
3. Figure Out What Type Of Wine Drinker You Are
When I started on my wine journey, I had no idea what was what, what I liked, or whether I would even like it. So, I started with sweet wine. It wasn’t until I started going to wine tastings that I realized …I’m a red wine lover!
4. Added Incentives to Visit Wine Tasting Rooms
The cost of visiting a wine-tasting room is relatively inexpensive. Most charge a small fee for wine tastings; however, a few high-profile wineries have exorbitant prices. It’s probably favorable to call ahead and ask. But it beats buying a bottle and finding out you don’t like it.
5. Taking Wine Tours Are Fun and Educational
Many wine-tasting rooms also have a vineyard and a winery on-site that offer tours. Each tour is different and provides a new experience. Take a camera and preserve memories for a lifetime. Touring the actual place where grapes are grown is my favorite part, as you get educated on how grapes are grown and why the owners love their particular winery and wines because not all grapes are grown alike! The High Plains in Lubbock, TX, is a great place to grow grapes because of the soil and weather.
6. Wine-Tasting Rooms In Texas Are Pet-Friendly
For the most part, wine-tasting rooms are pet-friendly and kid-friendly. But you can’t assume both. Please read up on its website before you go. You wouldn’t want to leave your kids and pets in the car. Not really; who does that!!
Most pet-friendly wine-tasting rooms will allow you to bring your pets and sit outside. Only a few have I seen that allow dogs inside. And don’t get upset if a winery doesn’t accept pets but has pets on the property when you arrive. It’s their pets. I’ve seen that a couple of times.
• Where Are All The Wine-Tasting Rooms In Texas?
The Texas Hill Country has the most. All up and down Hwy 290 and in every small town you go through.
East Texas and North Texas have a slew of them; however, I haven’t been able to visit many.
Other parts of Texas are coming together with their own wineries and tasting rooms. I think it’s the way of the world, and I have to blame the pandemic. Wineries are an excellent place to enjoy outside with family, pets, and friends. Can you tell I’m hooked?
Texas Hill Country Wineries
I have to boast about the Texas Hill Country Wineries, as it offers wine passport fours times a year all around the hill country and has become one of my favorite things to do when I get the chance to get down there. Their wine passports are offered in February, April, October, and December, and tickets are very responsible. I have found my favorite wines visiting wineries on the passport.
During the 2023 TEXSOM International Wine Awards, Texas Hill Country Wineries brought home a total of 64 medals. Texas wines performed exceptionally well in the competition, taking home 168 awards. Several Texas Hill Country Wineries members won medals this year.
If you think a wine experience is for you, consider following wine trails in Texas to get more acquainted with different wine-tasting rooms and WINES!