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Spicewood Vineyards
by
Kathy Sullivan

Spicewood VineyardsSummary: We enjoyed our visit to Spicewood Vineyards where we learned about the history and passion of the winery from Ron Yates, owner and winemaker. The name of the vineyards is from the spice bush that grows in Texas Hill Country.

We enjoyed our visit with Ron Yates, owner, of Spicewood Vineyards. Ron provided us with a history of the winery before he purchased the property in 2007. The former owners had the winery on sale for two years before it sold. One of their conditions for the sale of the property was the sale was to be to someone from the Texas Hill Country.

Spicewood VineyardsSpicewood was named for the spice bush frequently found in Texas Hill Country. The first vineyards were planted in 1992 with Chardonnay. The original owners were able to harvest grapes in 1995 as their first harvest. The winery building was built in 1999. Today the 23 acres of vineyards include Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Cabernet Sauvignon, Tempranillo, Syrah, Malbec and Grenache. Ron has found that Tempranillo is doing especially well in the vineyards. The winemaker is Jeff Ivy. Currently wine production is at 3,200 cases and there are seven wines on their tasting list. They “try” to be estate bottled. Given the unpredictable vineyard conditions in the Texas Hill Country, it can be difficult for most wineries to be all estate bottled.

Ron has an unusual way for deterring birds from destroying his grapes in the vineyard. He takes roadkill and places it near the vineyard. Buzzards will swarm over the roadkill and the small birds that eat grapes will stay away from the almost ripe grapes. Many vineyards find birds to be notorious for eating grapes just before harvest.

The barrel room is located below the tasting room. The unique walls of stone with stone arches between areas adds a wonderful ambience to the cellar. Wall lights add a warm glow. Both oak and stainless steel barrels are used to age wine. The stainless steel barrels allow a wine (Chardonnay) to age sur lie without the influence of oak.

Spicewood Vineyards     Spicewood Vineyards

Spicewood VineyardsWe tasted several wines at the tasting counter. The Sauvignon Blanc 2006 offered a bouquet of citrus with a taste of citrus and grapefruit. The finish was crisp. Estate Chardonnay 2007 was yellow with an apple caramel aroma. The taste was smooth with caramel apple notes and the finish was crisp. Semillon 2007 offered pear aromas and tastes. The finish was smooth with pear notes. Bluebonnet Blush was a blend of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. The finish was crisp and dry on the aftertaste. The Cabernet Claret 2007 was a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Zinfandel. It offered a red fruit aroma and taste. The finish was crisp with a slightly sweet ending. We also did a barrel tasting of a Touriga and Tempranillo blend. The aroma and taste featured dried fruit. The finish was fruity with tannins.

Browse the gift items available in the tasting room. The selection of gift baskets is unique for a tasting room. At Spicewood Vineyards, three styles of gift baskets are available at different prices. They are the Spicewood Surprise, Spicewood Select and Spicewood Supreme. In addition, gourmet food items are available.

A variety of events take place at Spicewood Vineyards. An event facility was recently built and events include weddings and winemaker dinners. Monthly events are special and include pig roasts, Shakespeare in the Vineyard and the Chili Cook Off. The event building has a large event area, ceiling fans, a fireplace and a tasting counter. A covered patio on two sides of the event center offers additional seating at tables. This outdoor seating area also has fans.

Spicewood Vineyards

Enjoy a visit to Spicewood Vineyards. Catch the enthusiasm for wine.

Spicewood Vineyards
1419 County Road 409
Spicewood, Texas 78669

GPS: N30º 27.513’ W98º 11.395’

 


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