Sunday, February 17, 2008

Come out and Play-yay

DH and I went on a wine tasting tour today. It was fun. Texas is the second largest wine tourist destination in the country. (I can't believe the Columbia River Valley let that one slip by.) I don't know that wine tourism is that much FUN (I tasted both good and ungood today), but it helps that the country's top waterpark AND one of the top shopping destinations in the country are both nearby. The outlet malls ARE this state's number one tourist destination.....but I digress. These days, there are dozens of wineries throughout the state.


I bought the tickets for Valentines. We'd heard there were a lot of wineries in the Hill Country (north of San Antonio, west of Austin, south of Waco) but we've never been. Mind you, we've been in the state for 13 years, and the oldest winery we visited was 20 years old. As we found out, it wasn't necessary to have a tasting ticket for the wineries, but toting the ticket got us a little "extra" at every stop. If we hadn't bought the tickets, we probably wouldn't have gone, so I think that was money well spent. We went to the Fredricksburg Winery (downtown Fredricksburg), Grape Creek Vinyards and Torre de Pietro (right next to each other on Hwy 90) and Sister Creek Vinyards in Sisterdale.


I am not a HUGE fan of reds. I'm not wild about the tannic taste. I found it VERY helpful to taste and smell back-to-back-to-back. It helped me winnow out what I liked and what I didn't. (I had a NASTY Pinot Noir-tasted like vinegar to me!) My pick? Grape Creek and Torre de Pietro are right next to each other, and Grape Creek's wines were very enjoyable. Torre de Pietro kind of set me back on my heels, pricewise. They were pretty proud of their Petit Shiraz. It was 100.00 a bottle. I am sure I am not qualified to drive THAT snob bus. At any rate, if I was only going to make one stop, it would be Grape Creek. We picked up a port, and a sweet white that I thought would be a perfect little "prezzie" wine to have on hand. I just looked at wine awards, and hey, that little 12.50 bottle won a Silver medal in recent competition. I can be the 12.50 snob, ok?


We stopped at Sisterdale because it was kind of in the homeward direction, and they specialize in reds, which DH thinks are wunnerful. DH loved their self-tour (it's in an old cotton gin), and he loved their flavors. (It also helped that there was a large farm of rusting Chevies right next door.) He pointed out the big plastic cork tapped into the side of each barrel. "They call that a bunghole," he announced gleefully and not too quietly. See what I mean about licenses to drive the wine snob bus??


I finished a "punkinhead" hat this weekend. I first made this Ann Norling hat about 5 years ago, and decided I needed a few for baby presents. I am shocked at how easy it was to do this hat-much easier than it was 5 years ago!! So it's done. I need to do several more, because there are a lot of women expecting. EVERYONE loves the pumpkins.

If I hand knit a hat, I can just throw it in a wine bag, right? I am so NOT kidding about that!

5 comments:

Minnie~Knits said...

Adorable little pumpkin hat! That'll be just right for keeping their little heads warm, come autumn.

Grace Yaskovic said...

Tom too is a huge red wine drinker, I prefer a softer chardonnay or pinot grigio, he does love a reisling which is white but its a bit too sweet for me. Our wine store has tastings every saturday so more often then not thats where he heads for awhile. We have done tours of Brotherhood in NY, 3 in Connecticut--especially loved Hopkins, Ben Maryl in NY and my brother's most recent wedding was at Alba Vineyards here in NJ, it is an enjoyable way to spend the day.

The hat is adorable ---I too know many babies coming, both cyberly and locally. Just glad its not me!

Enid said...

Very nice. It sounds like you all had a great ole time. I LURV Fredricksburg.

smariek said...

Sounds like a nice trip. I like reds a little more than the whites too. DH & I have made the trip up to our local Wine Country a few times, however the trips would be more fun if DH actually tasted the wines too (he can't, allergic). Oh well, it might be a while before we make any wine tasting trips.

Cindy G said...

Throw the hat in a wine bag? You mean you aren't knitting wine bags?

BTW, agree 100% about Penzy's (and anything that makes me look like I can cook is a Very Good Thing)