January 29, 2023: Why Texas Wine?
Why make wine in Texas? That’s a question that many outsiders and non-Texans have asked over the years. The Texas wine industry is incredibly fun to be a part of, so let’s share some more about what makes it great!
First it is an emerging region without the historical constraints that other wine regions have. We can try growing new varietals for the area as Texas isn’t locked into only working with a couple varietals. We can play around with different types of oak, and differing amounts. We have more freedom with blends. Basically we control the pen on what we want to produce, and there aren’t long standing expectations from customers to only produce specific styles of wine. Over time I imagine the industry will hone in on a style, but in the meantime it is a lot of fun creating the best wine possible without having to snap to a particular expectation.
Along with a lack of historical constraints, the industry is rapidly changing. There are always new wineries and vineyards popping up across Texas, and a lot of that growth is focused on the Texas Hill Country and Fredericksburg. Though many customers think that more competition is a bad thing, I imagine most wineries in the Texas Hill Country welcome the additional competition. With more wineries comes more restaurants, accommodations, activities, and visitors to our area, which is great for the long-term stability of the Texas wine industry.
In addition to customer-facing impacts, the more wineries and vineyards there are in Texas, the better support we receive from our suppliers. Lately more and more suppliers are dedicating sales teams to Texas, and giving us access to the best technologies and tools available that historically were harder to source for Texas grape growing and winemaking. Lastly, the higher the concentration of wineries, the more experience the labor pool has to help the wineries grow (including formal education through local universities). We need to be able to hire experienced and knowledgeable staff for winemaking, tasting rooms, wine clubs, etc. so that we can continually improve the quality of product and experience we provide customers.
As we are still a (relatively) small industry, there’s an intimacy that you won’t find everywhere. When you come out to wineries in Texas, you’re likely to meet grape growers, winemakers, owners, etc. Wineries like ours are amazing examples of farm-to-table production. We grow the grapes in Texas, make the wine in Texas, and sell it in Texas. You can see all aspects of our production when you visit as we manage end-to-end production. It’s also a small enough industry where you, the consumer, can dip your toes into many aspects of the business in your free time. There are countless opportunities to do some planting or pruning in a vineyard, harvest fruit, help out in a winery during harvest, help during a bottling day, etc.
Lastly, Texans have a lot of pride in everything from their state. This leads to die-hard customers that only want to support Texas wineries. This dedication is extremely important in a growing industry. We need people that are in our corner in this long journey to build the industry. These customers keep cheering us on and wanting us to continue growing and improving. It’s very rewarding to share new wines with these customers as they’ve seen where we came from, and can appreciate the hard work we’ve all put in to make a leap forward.
So we love the Texas wine industry, and we think it’s incredibly fun to pay attention to it and see how it changes over the years. With the amount of growth we know coming to the area, we have to imagine the changes won’t slow down anytime soon, so keep your eyes peeled for changes!