Tasting Texas Hill Country Wineries in 2 Days

  • Inspirations
  • on FEBRUARY 8, 2016
  • 1465
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In a part of the world renowned for its cowboys, flatlands, cows, and barbecue, most tend to forget that wine has a solid footing in Texas Hill Country. Filled with award-winning wines and uncovered small lots, the wineries of Texas Hill Country are worth exploring. We’ve gathered a list of eight wineries to visit on a two-day journey for a unique wine adventure in the Lone Star State.

Day 1

Image Source: Yelp

Westcave Cellars Winery
683 Ranch Rd 1320
Johnson City, TX 78636
(512) 431-1403
TripAdvisor: 4.5 stars, 22 reviews
Reservation: Required for private tastings

A relatively new winery on the Texas scene, Westcave Cellars Winery opened in 2010. Grown from the owners’ mutual love of horticulture (and frequent visits to California’s winemaking regions), the earliest Cabernet vines eventually morphed into an operation spanning 8 acres. The winery makes a variety of wines, but the Cabernet Sauvignon (Estate) 2012 reigns supreme, boasting a ranking as one of the top five Texan Cabernets by Texas Wine Journal. The atmosphere here is pretty, bright, and rustic, befitting its surroundings nicely.
Insider tip: Bring a picnic lunch and grab a spot outside for amazing views of the countryside.

Image Source: Yelp

McReynolds Wines
706 Shovel Mountain Rd
Cypress Mill, TX
(830) 825-3544
TripAdvisor: 4 stars, 9 reviews
Reservation: Required on weekdays
Directions: Head northwest on Hamilton Pools Road, then continue onto Farm Road 962/Ranch Road 962 E. After about 6 miles, turn right onto Shovel Mountain Road; the winery will be on your right.

With a small, family-business feel, McReynolds Wines is a quiet stop on the Texas Hill Country wine trail. Mac and Maureen McReynolds run the spot, and Mac’s storytelling, along with the log cabin tasting room, give this winery that authentic Texas feel. Don’t let the rustic vibe fool you, though: the McReynolds’ won awards for their 1995 Texas Shiraz long before the winery opened its doors in 2000.
Insider tip: The owners rarely rely on pomp and circumstance; if you arrive during a slower time, they’ll probably sit down for a glass of wine with you.

Image Source: Yelp

Torr Na Loch
7055 TX-29
Burnet, TX 78611
(832) 606-7575
TripAdvisor: 4.5 stars, 2 reviews
Reservation: Required
Directions: From McReynolds Wines, head south on Shovel Mountain Rd toward Farm Rd 962/Ranch Rd 962 E. Turn right onto Farm Rd 962/Ranch Rd 962 E. Turn right onto US-281 N/Farm Rd 962/Farm to Market Rd Rd 962 (signs for Farm to Market Road 962 W). Turn left onto TX-29 W/Buchanan Dr/W Polk St. The winery will be on the left.

Inspired by a trip to Scotland and the landscape of a favorite Australian winery, Torr Na Loch, which means “Hill Over Lakes” in Gaelic, is a winery built from the ground up—literally. With granite-heavy soils, preparing the ideal spot for vines was quite an undertaking for owners Blake and Karen DeBerry, but the views of grazing cattle, Lake Buchanan, Buchanan Dam, plus rows upon rows of Malbec, Syrah, and Petite Sirah were well worth the effort. All of the wines at Torr Na Loch are made exclusively with Texas-grown fruit, which infuses the varieties with an authentic taste of the area.
Insider tip: The winery uses the slogan “from rocks to wine” on all of its wines–now you know why.

Image Source: Yelp

Perissos Vineyard and Winery
7214 Park Road 4W
Burnet, TX 78611
(512) 820-2950
TripAdvisor: 4.5 stars, 34 reviews
Reservation: Required
Directions: From Torr Na Loch, head west on TX-29 W. After 2 miles, turn left onto Park Rd 4 W/State Park Rd 4. Drive about 6 miles to the winery.

Grown in decomposed granite soil, Perissos Vineyard and Winery grows Aglianico, Tempranillo, Viognier, Syrah, and Petite Sirah commercially. The winery also grows additional Italian, French, Portuguese, and Argentine varietals in their Library Test Block. Only 25% of the wine made at Perissos is from Texas fruit found outside the winery, which means the other 75% are from the estate plants, typically made in the traditional dry style.
Insider tip: Once you drive the scenic route to the winery, the tasting component can take place anywhere you see fit—your host or hostess will bring the wine to you!

Day 2

Image Source: Yelp

Chisholm Trail Winery
2367 Usener Rd
Fredericksburg, TX 78624
(830) 990-2675
TripAdvisor: 4.5 stars, 43 reviews
Reservation: Required for groups of 10 or more
Directions: From Perissos Winery, head south on Park Rd 4 W/State Park Rd 4 toward Enchanted Valley Rd. Slight right onto FM2342, then turn right onto Farm to Market Rd 1431 W. Turn left onto Farm to Market Rd 3404/Ranch Rd 3404/Slab Rd. Continue onto Co Rd 307, then take TX-16 S/N State Hwy 16 to Usener Rd in Gillespie County. Turn left onto Usener Rd; the winery will be on your left.

For day two of the Texas Hill Country winery excursion, head off the beaten path to Chisholm Trail Winery, located a bit outside Fredericksburg. The tasting room feels like an old Western saloon, fitting in well with the stone barns and aged buildings visible on the drive out to this slightly isolated winery. Opened in 1999, the winery sources Texas fruit for its wines, which are all made onsite. The small vineyard grows only Blanc du Bois, and although there are no tours, the fields can be seen outside through a large window in the tasting room.
Insider tip: Be careful driving into the winery—the ranch-style set up allows a few resident donkeys to roam freely!

Image Source: Yelp

Inwood Estates Vineyards Winery & Bistro
10303 Hwy 290 East
Fredericksburg, TX 78624
(830) 997-2304
TripAdvisor: 3.5 stars, 36 reviews
Reservation: Required for groups of six or more
Directions: From Chisholm Trail Winery, head southeast on Usener Rd toward Chisholm Trail, then turn left onto Tivydale Rd. Continue onto Friendship Ln. Turn right onto US-290 E/E Main St, follow 290 for about 8 miles – the winery will be on your right.

It all started with the hearty Palomino grape, and from that batch of wine, Inwood Estates Vineyards Winery & Bistro has grown into an operation specializing in some remarkable Tempranillo blends. Owner Dan Gatlin experimented all over Texas before hitting his stride, and his hard work has paid off. Head to the winery and bistro (yes, there’s a full menu) Thursday through Sunday; live music is performed from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays.
Insider tip: Try the barbecue, which is central-Texas-style with little to no sauce.

Image Source: Yelp

Becker Vineyards
464 Becker Farms Road
Stonewall, TX 78671
(830) 644-2681
TripAdvisor: 4.5 stars, 280 reviews
Reservation: Required for group tours
Directions: From Inwood Estates Vineyards Winery & Bistro, head east on US-290 E toward Frantzen Ln, then turn right onto Jenschke Ln. Turn right onto Becker Farms Rd, and the winery will be on your left.

Opened in 1996, the winery at Becker Vineyards is modeled after a 19th-century German stone bar, a style familiar in the area. Committed to showcasing Texas growers and fruit, Becker Vineyards currently contracts with more independent grape growers than any other winery in Texas. Along with the many varieties of grapes grown and wines made at Becker Vineyards—including Cabernet Sauvignon, Viognier, Petit Verdot, and Sauvignon Blanc—the lavender fields are a huge draw for visitors. Planted by Dr. Richard Becker and his wife Bunny after a trip to Provence, there are more than 4,000 lavender plants on the property.
Insider tip: Most of the wines made at Becker Vineyards are available around stores in Texas, but check in at the winery for some exclusive choices.

There is no shortage of fantastic wineries within Texas Hill Country, and we hope this list will give you a solid start on all the region has to offer. Grab your bags and head to the Lone Star State for some amazingly complex wines!


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