A Holiday Ode to the San Francisco International Wine Competition

10th Dec 2018 @ 15:57 by matt@penandtellus.com

In honor of Christmas

And other holidays, too,

We would like to share

A few results with you.

Our wines have been scored

Their points totaled with care

And no less than four winners

Were declared!

First, ‘16 Tempranillo

A bronze medal winner.

A rich, viscous red

Ideal with steak dinner.

Then, one more bronze,

Another red blend.

We call it ‘16 Tioja

It’s finish won’t end!

Next came the silver

This time, a white!

Our ‘17 Roussanne

Is sure to delight.

Finally, gold

For our Texedo Red,

A blend based on Dolcetto

Buy some, go ahead!

We thank San Francisco

And its wine competition

For honoring us

With this great recognition.

We have enclosed

A link below

To purchase a bottle

Or three, who knows?

So whether its Roussanne

Or our Tioja, too,

We want to bring

Some holiday magic to you.

Happy Holidays from the Wedding Oak Family!

Buy your Christmas gifts at Wedding Oak Winery: https://weddingoakwinery.com/shop.

Award Winning Wine Pairings for Thanksgiving Dinner

14th Nov 2018 @ 14:40 by matt@penandtellus.com

Since the Pilgrims first celebrated the harvest festival in 1621, Americans have wrestled with the annual conundrum of finding the perfect wine pairing for Thanksgiving dinner. This year when you gather with family and friends to express your gratitude, we have recommendations for award winning bottles of delicious wine.

A traditional Thanksgiving menu can be complex, which makes it necessary to select versatile wines. Turkey is the easy part when it comes to wine pairing. White wines and lighter style reds are great with white meat, and dark meat can stand up to bold reds. The tough part can be pairing wine with a wide array of spicy, sweet, and savory sides like cranberries, potatoes, gravy, veggies, stuffing and all the Thanksgiving trimmings.

It’s always a smart strategy to select both excellent white and red wines to pair with different dishes and to please a plentitude of palates for Thanksgiving dinner. White wines with well-balanced acidity are the right choice to accompany a broad selection of Thanksgiving dishes. Wines like Viognier and Albariño will work nicely. Red wines with fruity flavors or soft tannins will accompany a wide variety of holiday dishes without overpowering lighter turkey flavors. Wines like Tempranillo and Montepulciano are food friendly and wonderful with a with a large selection of dishes.

As a rule of thumb, plan to have one bottle of each wine for every two people at your dinner. If you are going to someone else’s house for dinner, make sure to bring a bottle or two to supplement the host’s supply.

Just in time for Thanksgiving, the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo International Wine Competition announced its 2019 award winners. Wedding Oak Winery was recognized with seven medals. Any of these wines would be fantastic on your holiday table, but in particular here are a couple of my recommendations for your feast.

Wedding Oak Winery Viognier, Texas Hill Country, 2017

White wines tend to be food friendly with bright acidity that brings various flavors of food to life rather than overpowering it. Viognier, a grape variety that is native to the Rhône Valley, makes rich white wines with distinctive aromas of apricot, peaches, and spice. Our leaner Viognier has floral and citrus aromas, along with a liveliness on the palate that compliments characters of honeyed melon, apple, and pear flavors in a lingering Meyer lemon finish. This wine is made from estate-grown grapes from High Valley Vineyard near our winery in San Saba. The vibrant wine is a lovely accompaniment to Thanksgiving delights.

Wedding Oak Winery Tioja, Texas Hill Country, 2016

Our flagship wine, Tioja, is made with 70% Tempranillo and 30% Grenache grapes grown in the Texas Hill Country. Tempranillo brings both earthy and fruity qualities that are delicious with Thanksgiving dinner. This wine has a dark ruby color and complex aromas of black cherry, cola, cinnamon, cardamom, allspice, and plum. Our Tioja has tart red cherry, plum, and berry flavors, along with white pepper spices and herbs and a core of bright, food-loving acid. That acidity in Tempranillo allows it to play very well with Thanksgiving fare. Even though the wine is “big,” its tannins are elegant, allowing it to play well with Turkey and all of its friends.

We’ve Made Ordering Wine for Thanksgiving Easy

To help make holiday planning easier for you, we’ve prepared a Thanksgiving and Holiday Special with these two wines for only $50 with discounted shipping. Get yours today: https://weddingoakwinery.com/product/holiday-special.

We realize you may want more than just these two award winning wines. Here are all of our 2019 Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo International Wine Competition Award Winners:

Wedding Oak Winery Tioja, Texas Hill Country, 2016 — Silver

Wedding Oak Winery Montepulciano, Texas High Plains, 2016 — Silver

Wedding Oak Winery Reconcilable Differences Red, Texas, 2016 — Silver

Wedding Oak Winery Albariño, Texas, 2017 Albariño — Bronze

Wedding Oak Winery Rosé de Dolcetto, Texas High Plains, 2017 — Bronze

Wedding Oak Winery Tempranillo, Texas Hill Country, 2016 — Bronze

Wedding Oak Winery Viognier, Texas Hill Country, 2017 — Bronze


Learn to Taste Like a Pro: Red Wine Edition

26th Oct 2018 @ 18:00 by matt@penandtellus.com

By Seth Urbanek, assistant winemaker, Wedding Oak Winery

In honor of Texas Wine Month, which happens each October, here is a behind the scenes look at an important part of the winemaking process. To ensure we make the best wine possible, we meticulously evaluate the wine throughout the winemaking process by critically tasting it with specific techniques. The core of our tasting is how a wine professional in a restaurant tastes wine. We just use the information differently.

Sommeliers have many different techniques they use to analyze wine, from identifying flavors to making notes about the structure. Surprisingly, it’s not as difficult as one may think. If your taste buds are fully functional and you taste enough wine, you too can learn to taste like a pro.

Admittedly, breaking down a wine is inherently unnatural and requires practice to master. We are conditioned to taste food or drink as a whole, taking in its texture and flavors as a combination of sensations. Conversely, during a wine tasting, we evaluate each element separately, taking multiple sips and recording our observations.

You can taste a red wine just like a professional by carefully evaluating the following components are all found in red wine:

Acid Acidity in a wine manifests itself as a tartness or sourness, and often makes your mouth water. Think of it in its extreme as the sensation of biting into a lemon. It can range from low to high in intensity in a wine. Acid may sound like an unpleasant element, but is imperative to create a long-lasting, quality wine since it is a natural preservative.

Tannin Tannin is a compound that is only found in wines made with grape skin in contact with the juice during fermentation (99% of these are reds). It causes a rough, sandpaper-like feeling on your tongue and gums. It will often dry out your mouth and can counteract acidity in a wine to create a feeling of balance. Wines are not the only beverages that have tannin; coffee and black tea also contain this compound (thus, it is not the culprit of your wine headaches, contrary to popular belief).

Body A wine’s body is essentially an overall “weight” or mouthfeel. To analyze body, you can take a sip of wine, hold it on your tongue, and equate it to the weight of milk. A light body will feel like skim milk, while a medium body will have the weight of 2% and a heavy body will feel like cream on your palate. Because alcohol is heavier than water, it contributes greatly to the body of a wine, and full-bodied wines are often the ones that contain the highest amount of alcohol. Often, people believe that a heavier body is indicative of quality. This is actually not the case!

Flavor Flavor is the main element that one thinks of when analyzing wine. Flavors in red wines can range from red fruits (cherry, strawberry, and raspberry) to dark fruits (blackberry, plum) to earthiness (wet stone, mulch, potting soil), along with floral elements, like red rose or violet. In an aging wine, we can taste flavors like tobacco, leather, cedar bark, dried fruits, and wet leaves. As most reds are aged in oak barrels, we can also taste for oak-related notes, like baking spices (cinnamon, clove, and vanilla), toast, and smoke. The best way to truly practice identifying various flavor is by using a flavor wheel for helpful descriptions. One our favorite is the one created by Wine Folly: https://shop.winefolly.com/collections/tasting-tools/products/wine-flavors-chart.

Finish The finish of a wine describes how long the wine’s flavors (not the acidity or tannin) linger on your palate. If the flavors stay for longer than 20 seconds, it has a long finish. If they remain for 10-20 seconds, it has a medium finish, and anything less than 10 seconds is typically a short finish. A lengthy finish is desirable since it indicates quality and careful winemaking.

So, are you ready to taste? Let’s practice tasting by evaluating our 2015 Sangiovese.

Acid: Our Sangiovese has a medium acid. It has a lively brightness, but not overwhelmingly tart. You can use this acidity level as a benchmark when you taste other wines!

Tannin: The tannin is medium, perfectly balancing out the moderate acidity. Our Sangiovese has a firm structure without overpoweringly drying out the mouth. This wine actually contains 14% Tannat (a more tannic grape) added to give this wine more structure.

Body: The body is medium, which comes from the moderate level of alcohol.

Flavor: This wine is bursting with vibrant aromas of red cherries and violets, as well as ripe strawberry and cherry with a hint of black tea and cedar. The red fruit flavors are characteristic of the Sangiovese grape and reminiscent of wines from Tuscany.

Finish: This wine has a lovely, long finish, with the red fruits lingering long after you’ve taken your last sip.

Using this guide, we hope that you are inspired to purchase a bottle of Wedding Oak wine and start practicing tasting like a pro at home or with your friends. You can buy it here: https://weddingoakwinery.com/product/sangiovese-2015. If you get stuck, don’t become discouraged, as it is merely an excuse to pop open another bottle and try again. With enough practice, we promise that you’ll be tasting like a pro!

From the Vineyard: The Impact of Scorching Heat on the 2018 Harvest

10th Aug 2018 @ 13:20 by matt@penandtellus.com

September 2018

By Penny S. Adams, winemaker and viticulturist for Wedding Oak Winery

It’s hot enough to fry an egg on the bed of a pickup truck. We’ve had another summer of record heat in Texas. What does this heat mean for our 2018 harvest at Wedding Oak Winery?

This year has certainly not been an ordinary vintage in the Texas Hill Country. We started our year with record low single digit temperatures for extended periods that had us worried about winter hardiness, and now the excessively high temperatures combined with drought conditions are creating challenges in the vineyard and cellar. Excessive heat is not in itself a bad thing in regions like Texas, Paso Robles and other regions where it is the normal. However, heat can cause a stop in photosynthesis, sunburn on the grapes, and when combined with drought conditions fruit shrivel is inevitable. That’s what we are facing.

Vineyard sites, like our Estate High Valley Vineyard, that are perched high atop the limestone hills are protected from late spring frost damage. Yet, these same sites have shallow soils which make them more susceptible to drought issues, especially when combined with scorching heat. The 30+ days of 100+ degree temperatures and drought conditions have certainly shriveled the grapes which reduces yields.

Heat and low humidity contribute to excessively high evapotranspiration rates. We combat that with aggressive irrigation practices. We also implement a thoughtful strategy to keep the leaf canopy functioning and the crop hydrated until the fruit achieves true physiological ripeness. That’s not always an easy thing to do. Most grape varieties in the vineyards we contract have experienced heat stress resulting in smaller berry sizes and berry shrivel.

Photosynthesis slows or can even cease in the high temperatures we are experiencing this year. The degree of the impact for each grape varietal is dependent on the phenological stage of development the grapes were in when the intense heat disrupted photosynthesis. Roussanne and Mourvèdre, both late varieties for us, struggled due to the skins not being ripe before the heat set in. Good early season canopy management practices limited sunburn damage in our managed vineyards. However, growers with younger blocks, less leaf canopy and more exposed fruit have been impacted. Tempranillo, Syrah and Albariño with more shaded canopies performed better than more open canopy varieties like Viognier and Mourvèdre.

There is also good news. We have excellent grape quality in 2018.

While grape growers are frustrated with the reduced yields this year from the need to hold fruit until fruit is truly ripe, our winemaking team is happy with the more concentrated flavors and aromas which will define the 2018 vintage in the years to come. In our Estate Vineyard the Syrah Block shrivel is an inherent annual characteristic that develops a concentrated sugar and desirable deep brooding fruit quality to the fruit and finished wines.

We have completed the harvest of our Hill Country white grape varieties. Our Albariño from our Wildseed Farms Vineyard, harvested very early this year on July 23, was very high quality and is looking beautiful in the cellar. We finished the white grape harvest by hand picking the Roussanne at our Estate High Valley Vineyard earlier this week. Despite the heat we were able to hold the crop with the protected canopy until ripe. It is a beautiful crop with intense aromatics.

The red grape varieties from our Estate Syrah and Grenache came into the cellar with exceptional quality; high brix and good varietal character. Our first crop of Tempranillo at Wildseed Farms Vineyard was harvested this week with high yields and good chemistry. It is looking nice in the cellar. Another standout for us this year is Negro Amaro from Hye Top Vineyard, that reached its true ripeness, holding its acid until harvest, producing a rich, rustic and highly tannic wine. We’re awaiting harvest of Aglianico and Carignane in the next several weeks.

The 2018 vintage in the Texas Hill Country is light in yield, meaning less wine in the 2018 vintage. The good news is the wines will have highly concentrated flavors. Most importantly, grape varietal response to the heat and drought will help our region better define varieties best suited to our unique growing conditions in the Texas Hill Country. It has been a great growing season.

From the Vineyard: Spring Growth is a Crystal Ball to the Fall Harvest

19th Apr 2018 @ 08:37 by matt@penandtellus.com

By Penny S. Adams, winemaker and viticulturist for Wedding Oak Winery

If I had a crystal ball, I’d use it to check the weather every day. Instead, like all grape growers in Texas during later winter and early spring, I obsessively check the weather forecasts from all the usual, and less certain, sources.

Even though I don’t have a crystal ball to show me what Mother Nature has instore, the effects of the weather on the grapevines during the winter and spring give us a little bit of a glimpse into what we can expect from the vineyards at harvest.

For the 2018 vintage, my assessment is so far, so good.

Fortunately, winter in the Hill Country brought us little heartbreak this year. Temperatures remained consistently chilly, rather than swinging from one extreme to another. This allowed the grapes to stay dormant until a normal bud break schedule. Our Viognier was first to emerge from dormancy, while the Mourvèdre peeked out last, true to form. Despite the relatively calm winter, a few of our weaker vines experienced cordon (aka permanent wood) loss because temperatures plummeted to the single digits for a few days. However, we had little total vine loss this season.

The advent of spring brings its own unique stresses in the vineyard. As the weather warms to about 55 degrees Fahrenheit consistently, the vines emerge from slumber and use carbohydrate stores to synthesize new shoots laden with potential fruit clusters. A sudden cold snap can kill these shoots — even the whole vine — causing massive fruit loss. What’s more, Texan storms, usually accompanied by strong winds, can result in shoot breakage and irregular cluster pollination. While a little rain is welcome, particularly because we need to irrigate to replace depleted moisture levels soil levels, too much water causes grape growth to get out of hand. That is something we don’t want.

The period after bud break is referred to as the "Grand Period of Growth," a time when many factors come together to determine size of clusters, fruit quality, and wine quality potential. It may seem counterintuitive, however limiting excessive shoot and leaf growth is necessary during the growing season. Pruning shoots and leaves allows the sugars created by the plant to localize mostly in the fruit. It also helps the plant to focus on ripening the berries rather than diverting energy to overall growth. Riper grapes=more sugars=more alcohol, which helps enhances the expression of desirable flavor and aroma compounds. Picking at the right acidity and sugar levels helps us build an exquisite flavor profile. A win for a winemaker.

Some grape varieties, like our Viognier, are naturally predisposed to produce too many buds, and thereby more fruit than the variety can fully ripen. Consequently, we must work harder to remove excessive shoots to achieve a highly-coveted, perfect “fruit-to-leaf ratio” that will ultimately result in superior grape quality.

While surveying newer vineyards planted in 2016, I happily sense the potential for fairly high yields and wine quality. With these vines, there is sufficient light penetration into the vine canopy to ripen this first crop to perfection. In their youth, we place specific importance in training these new vines, promoting the formation of trunks, cordons and spurs so that they can withstand Texas weather conditions.

In the older vineyards, we are removing unwanted shoots and spacing them to encourage sufficient airflow, which helps prevent fungal infections. Two rainy years have resulted in more insect vectors of Pierce's Disease, a devastating sharpshooter-spread disease that is prominent in the southern U.S.

In addition to managing our existing vineyards, we're also working with growers to plant additional acreage.

We plan up to two years in advance for this planting time, ordering vines, preparing the site and carefully planting the vines before the arrival of our Texas heat. At Wildseed Farms, we are planting another 8 acres of Vermentino, Montepulciano, and Aglianico, all central/southern Italian grape varieties adept at withstanding Texas heat. At Fire Oak Vineyard, we are planting 8 acres of Mourvèdre, Roussanne, Grenache, and Sangiovese; most of these are native Rhone varieties except for the latter, an indigenous Tuscan grape.

So far in this growing season, the conditions in our vineyards is right where we want it to be. My prognosis is that we will have a great crop at harvest. We are excited about the potential of the 2018 vintage and can’t wait to bring you more great Texas wine.

Wedding Oak Winery Recognized for Outstanding Wine at TEXSOM International Wine Awards

13th Mar 2018 @ 17:30 by matt@penandtellus.com

Wedding Oak Winery won four medals at the 2018 TEXSOM International Wine Awards (IWA) which took place on February 12-14, 2018 at the Grapevine Convention Center, Grapevine, Texas. Wedding Oak Winery received two silver medals for its 2016 Marsanne and 2015 Tempranillo Reserva, as we as Bronze medals for it 2015 Tioja and Sangiovese 2015. All Wedding Oak wines submitted to the competition are made using 100 percent Texas grown grapes.

In its first bottling, the single vineyard, single variety 2016 Marsanne is gaining high praise. In addition to this Silver Medal at TEXSOM IWA, the Rhone-style wine, made with grapes grown in the estate High Valley Vineyard in San Saba County, was recently recognized with a Double Gold, Class Champion and Texas Class Champion at the 2018 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo International Wine Competition. It also won awards at the 2017 San Francisco International Wine Competition and the 2017 Lone Star International Wine Competition earlier this year. The versatile and food-friendly Marsanne has lively Meyer lemon and roasted almonds flavors, rich, mineral texture and creamy vanilla finish.

The Wedding Oak Winery 2015 Tempranillo Reserva is made with grapes were grown at Mirasol Vineyard in Lampasas County, managed by viticulturist and winemaker Penny Adams. It is a Rioja style wine, made with a blend of 81 percent Tempranillo, 18 percent Garnacha, and a touch of Viognier, that is barrel aged in neutral French oak for 14 months. A rich and aromatic wine, the Tempranillo Reserva has full cherry, cedar and tobacco box, scents, tart black cherry flavors, vibrant acidity, soft tannins and a lingering finish. This wine pairs incredibly well with Texas BBQ.

“TEXSOM IWA has emerged as one of the most influential wine competitions in the world,” says Penny Adams, winemaker. “Any medal received at TEXSOM IWA is a high accomplishment. We’re incredibly honored to have our wines recognized among some of the best wine made in the world. This is a resounding confirmation that wine made in Texas is made with the utmost quality.”

The TEXSOM International Wine Awards is the preeminent wine competition in the United States. The Journal of Wine Economics recently recognized TEXSOM IWA as the most selective wine competition in the U.S. and praised it for the competition’s ability to differentiate quality. The recognition was based on the high level of its judges, their broad experience and global perspective, which leads to a more selective, and more meaningful, medal distribution. The 2018 TEXSOM IWA evaluated more than 3,600 entries in a blind tasting conducted by a panel of 64 judges that included industry leaders, Master Sommeliers and Masters of Wine judges.

Our 2018 TEXSOM International Wine Award Winning Wines

  • Wedding Oak Winery Marsanne 2016, High Valley Estate Vineyards, Texas Hill Country — Silver
  • Wedding Oak Winery, Tempranillo Reserva 2015, Mirasol Vineyards, Texas Hill Country — Silver
  • Wedding Oak Winery, Tioja 2015, Mirasol Vineyards, Texas Hill Country — Bronze
  • Wedding Oak Winery, Sangiovese 2015, Texas Hill Country — Bronze

    Wedding Oak Winery Hires Seth Urbanek as Assistant Winemaker

    10th Jan 2018 @ 09:21 by matt@penandtellus.com

    We have hired Seth Urbanek as assistant winemaker. Seth, a Texas native, is responsible for cellar management and assisting with all aspects of production working with head winemaker and viticulturist, Penny Adams, and her winemaking team.

    Seth brings extensive research skills and winemaking talent to Wedding Oak Winery. He has experience in making both new world and old world wines, with stints at Sheldrake Point Winery, Ovid, NY, MollyDooker Winery in McLaren Vale, South Australia, and Champagne Bollinger, Aÿ, France.

    “I was bitten by the wine bug at an early age,” says Seth Seth. “After I graduated from Texas A&M with a degree in International Relations, I spent a semester in France. While there, I fell in love with wine and knew I wanted to work in the wine industry. I temporarily put my winemaking aspirations on hold while serving a term in the U.S. Army.”

    Seth was commissioned as second lieutenant, serving two tours in Afghanistan, and was awarded the Bronze Star Medal in recognition of his service contributions to the U.S. Army. He concluded his service as a Captain at Fort Drum, NY.

    During his time at Fort Drum, he began to engage with several of the up and coming producers in the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York. After his tenure in the service, he was able to parlay those relationships into a job as part of the vineyard management team at Sheldrake Point Winery.

    That experience led to a thirst for deeper understanding of the science behind wine. Seth pursued a Master of Science degree in Food Science and Technology, with concentration in Enology, at Cornell University. In that program he conducted research that explores advances in yeast metabolism during fermentation.

    He pursued additional hands-on winemaking experience by taking a semester off from Cornell to work at MollyDooker Winery in South Australia as a laboratory technician and cellar hand. Most recently, Seth worked a three-month internship through the champagne harvest at Champagne Bollinger in France. A perk to the job was to take advantage of this expert palate to evaluate wines from a portion of the 3,500 barrels that make up the 2017 vintage.

    “As the winery continues to grow and mature, we have made important hires to strengthen our team in essential areas of the business,” says Mike McHenry, managing partner. “Hiring Seth to support Penny is part of our strategic plan to continue to produce high-quality wines with Texas grown grapes. We look forward to integrating his talents into the team.”

    Seth says, “I had not considered my home state of Texas as part of my winemaking career, but I was amazed at the quality of Texas wines when I was exposed to them at an industry conference. After a short conversation with Penny Adams, the winemaker at Wedding Oak Winery, I knew that we would be able to work together to produce quality wines from Texas fruit. I couldn’t resist the opportunity to work with Wedding Oak Winery to make stellar wines here in the Lone Star State.”

    “We’re thrilled to have Seth on the Wedding Oak winemaking team,” says Penny Adams. “We both see winemaking as a two-fold approach of art and science. Seth’s scientific background is a great complement to my own academically influenced style.”

    Seth is a Houston native, a graduate of St. Thomas Episcopal High School and Texas A&M University. He holds a certified proficiency in French language from Centre Universitaire d’Etudes Francaises, Grenoble, France, and a Master of Science degree in Enology at Cornell University.

    Wedding Oak Winery Wins 3 Class Champion Awards at the 2018 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo International Wine Competition

    20th Nov 2017 @ 14:33 by matt@penandtellus.com

    Wedding Oak Winery was recognized with three Class Champion, and two Double Gold medals, among nine wines that won medals at the 15th annual Rodeo Uncorked! International Wine Competition, held Nov. 11 – 12, 2017, at NRG Center in Houston, Texas. Wedding Oak Winery received Class Champion, Class Champion and Double Gold medals for its 2016 Marsanne and 2015 Tioja and a Class Champion, Texas Class Champion, and Silver medal for its 2016 Wedding Oak Winery Bridal Veil white blend. All Wedding Oak wines submitted to the competition are made using 100 percent Texas grown grapes.

    The 2016 Marsanne is the first bottling of a single vineyard, single variety Marsanne, and it is winning strong accolades. The Rhone-style wine, made with grapes grown in the estate High Valley Vineyard in San Saba County, also won awards at the 2017 San Francisco International Wine Competition and the 2017 Lone Star International Wine Competition earlier this year. It is a fantastic wine to serve for Thanksgiving with roast turkey and the traditional sides. The Marsanne has spicy aromatics, lively Meyer lemon and roasted almonds flavors, rich, mineral texture and creamy vanilla finish that make it a food-friendly wine. It is a complex white wine, worthy of aging.

    Wedding Oak Winery’s flagship red wine, Tioja, is a salute to the Spanish Rioja region, made predominantly with the Tempranillo grape from Mirasol Vineyard and Tio Pancho Vineyard, in the Texas Hill Country AVA. Tioja is wonderful example of Hill Country terroir. It is an elegant, fruity red wine with bright fragrances of fresh red berries, plums and spicy white pepper, almost tea-like. It has tart cherry flavors, hints of tomato, a bit of spiciness, and firm tannins. Tioja is a wonderful wine for Thanksgiving, with fresh acidity that loves the rich fat of the turkey dark meat and the gravy.

    “These awards are a powerful recognition that Texas wines are competitive with wines from around the world,” says Penny Adams, winemaker. “While Texas wines make up a small percentage of the overall wines submitted for the competition, there were many among the medal winners. We are incredibly proud to have our wines recognized as Class Champions, Texas Class Champions, and Double Gold medal winners”

    Rodeo Uncorked! International Wine Competition is one of the largest international wine competitions in the United States. The 2018 International Wine Competition evaluated a record number of wine entries — 3,188 wines — from 18 different countries. Texas wineries entered 420 wines in the competition. The submissions were judged in a double-blind procedure by local and national wine experts with extensive credentials. The results are audited on site by PricewaterhouseCoopers, ensuring the highest integrity.

    2018 Houston Rodeo Uncorked! International Wine Competition

    • Wedding Oak Winery Marsanne 2016, Texas Hill Country — Double Gold, Class Champion and Texas Class Champion
    • Wedding Oak Winery Tioja 2015, Texas Hill Country — Double Gold, Class Champion and Texas Class Champion
    • Wedding Oak Winery Bridal Veil 2016, Texas High Plains — Silver, Class Champion and Texas Class Champion
    • Wedding Oak Winery Roussanne 2016, Texas High Plains — Silver
    • Wedding Oak Winery Sangiovese 2015, Texas Hill Country — Silver
    • Wedding Oak Winery Harmony Ridge 2015, Texas Hill Country —Bronze
    • Wedding Oak Winery Regency Bridge 2015, Texas Hill Country — Bronze
    • Wedding Oak Winery Terre Blanc 2015, Texas Hill Country — Bronze
    • Wedding Oak Winery Viognier, Texas Hill Country, 2016 — Bronze

    Visit Texas Hill Country Wineries for an Ideal Autumn Weekend Getaway During Texas Wine Month

    25th Sep 2017 @ 09:36 by matt@penandtellus.com

    Celebrate Texas Wine Month at Wedding Oak Winery Grape Stomp in Fredericksburg

    Recently lifestyle publication, VinePair, ranked the Texas Hill Country as one of The 7 Best Wine Regions in America for Seeing Fall Colors. For many Texans, this isn’t particularly surprising. We know the Hill Country is absolutely beautiful any time of year, and particularly in Autumn. In addition, October is Texas Wine Month, making it an ideal time to plan a weekend getaway in the Texas Hill Country.

    A perfect way to take in the view is with a lazy, ambling drive through the countryside. There are many scenic drives through the Texas Hill Country that offer gorgeous views of the toasted golden landscape with sprinkles of fall colors. We’re partial to that beautiful stretch of Highway 16 between Fredericksburg and San Saba, the home of our winery. Another gorgeous drive is the Willow City Loop that takes in a roll down the gorgeous Farm Road 1323, which can deposit you just north of Fredericksburg on HWY 16.

    Wedding Oak Winery Grape Stomp in Fredericksburg

    Once you’re in Fredericksburg, there is no better place to visit in the Fall than Wildseed Farms. It is a one-stop shopping destination for picking out your fall flowers, pumpkins and other seasonal decorations. All of that autumn beauty will work up a mighty thirst. Fortunately, Wedding Oak Winery has a tasting room conveniently located on site. After all, it is impossible to visit wine country without visiting a winery.

    To celebrate Texas Wine Month, we will hold our Grape Stomp & Harvest Celebration at Wedding Oak Winery at the Wildseed Farms on Sunday, October 1, 2017. Enjoy the day with 100% Texas wine tasting, grape stomping, and saving your stomp memories with an imprint of your feet or hands on a commemorative T-Shirt, and live music.

    Our Wedding Oak Winery tasting room in Fredericksburg is a relaxing destination in the heart of Texas’ wine tourism on the Wine Road 290. The 4,570 square-foot facility includes a tasting room, as well as a covered patio with a club members’ lounge adjacent to a fireplace and water feature. Enjoy tastings at the bar or in the patio seating area. We offer more than 20 wines by the glass or by the bottle to enjoy at the winery or while strolling the Wildseed Farms property taking views of the vineyards.

    The slightly cooler fall weather sets a perfect mood for sipping wine. A couple of our favorite Autumn food and wine pairings include:

    Pumpkin Risotto paired with 2015 Terre Blanc White Rhone-style blends, such as our Terre Blanc, are a terrific accompaniment to the savory pumpkin dish. The stone fruit flavors of peach and nectarine, along with the hint of almond from the Roussanne, Marsanne and Viognier complement your pumpkin dishes beautifully.

    Venison Sausage and Roasted Potatoes paired with 2014 Tempranillo Reserva This is hearty cool-weather meal. The rustic flavors and hint of saltiness are matched well with the bright cherry flavors and dusty leather in our Tempranillo Reserva. Tempranillo is the ultimate autumn wine. It is perfect by the fire.

    Make Wedding Oak Winery part of your Texas Hill Country Autumn getaway weekend: 100 Legacy Drive, Fredericksburg, TX, 78624.

    Wedding Oak Winery Won Six Medals at the 37th Annual San Francisco International Wine Competition

    8th Aug 2017 @ 05:38 by matt@penandtellus.com

    Our wines continue to impress on the global stage, with six medals won at the 2017 San Francisco International Wine Competition. The judging panel evaluated our wines against thousands of others based on varietal and vintage, and our wines were deemed finely crafted wine, well above average, or well-crafted wines that deserves recognition.

    Winning any award is a thrill, and a great indication to our customers that Wedding Oak Winery produces world-class wines. However, we are particularly thrilled to be recognized at the San Francisco International Wine Competition. It is easily one of the most prestigious, and the largest international wine competitions in the United States. More than 4,300 wines from more than 30 countries around the world were evaluated by a panel of 58 judges at the 37th San Francisco International Wine Competition. These distinguished and discerning judges really put the wine through its paces. Medal winners are chosen through a rigorous judging process held over four days of precise blind tastings.

    We are particularly thrilled that our three single-variety, Texas-grown Rhone style white wines each won a silver medal: our Viognier, Roussanne and Marsanne.

    One of our flagship wines, the 2016 High Valley Estate Viognier is made with estate-grown grapes grown high atop a hill in in San Saba county where they reach optimum ripeness. They are hand harvested in early morning, arriving at the winery early and cool where they are whole-berry pressed. The juice goes through a long, slow fermentation resulting in an elegant, lean-style wine with white flower, tropical fruit and stone fruit aromas. This wine has lovely honeyed melon, apple, nectarine and pear flavors with a crisp Meyer lemon lingering finish. It’s an incredibly food-friendly wine that goes really well with roasted chicken, and grilled vegetables.

    We love working with the Roussanne grape, and our 2016 harvest was stellar. It was so good, that we made our first single variety Roussanne 2016 with grapes harvested from the Narra Vineyard in the Texas High Plains. This wine has a beautiful golden straw color, powerful scents of fresh flowers, peaches, spice tea, roasted nuts and pepper. The sumptuous wine has a velvety mouthfeel with honeyed pear and white apple flavors with lively acidity that let it pair incredibly well with seafood, grilled pork, and dishes with savory sauces. This wine recently won a gold medal at the prestigious 34th annual Lone Star International Wine Competition.

    Another Rhone variety that we made in a single vineyard, single variety wine is Marsanne, which is grown atop a mesa overlooking Cherokee Creek with deep limestone and clay soils in our estate High Valley Vineyard in San Saba County. Our first bottling, the 2016 Marsanne, is as pleasingly bright with a rich, mineral texture that will become more complex with time. It’s generous with spicy aromatics, and packed with zesty Meyer lemon and roasted almonds flavors, with a creamy vanilla finish. It’s a great wine to serve with rich seafood dishes, and grilled chicken or pork tenderloin.

    We hope you will try all of our award winning wines.

    2017 San Francisco International Wine Competition Awards

    • Wedding Oak Winery Marsanne Estate Texas Hill Country $29 — Silver
    • Wedding Oak Winery 2016 Viognier Estate Texas Hill Country $28 — Silver
    • Wedding Oak Winery 2016 Roussanne Texas High Plains $28— Silver
    • Wedding Oak Winery 2015 Sangiovese Texas Hill Country $29 — Bronze
    • Wedding Oak Winery 2015 Red Blend Tioja Texas Hill Country $29 — Bronze
    • Wedding Oak Winery 2016 Dolcetto Rosé Texas High Plains $24 — Bronze