One of the exciting things about blogging and tasting Texas wines is the travel around the state; it’s the back roads, the missed turns, the bad GPS data and finally reaching your final destination. Luckily we celebrated my birthday without all that extra frustration and happily ended up with more than I expected.
We visited 96° West Winery in Wylie, Texas of all places. This small town has a really nice downtown street front area filled with shops, food and boutique places that reminded me of several small Texas towns still full of life with a small town feel. Wylie is one of those places that have that welcoming feel even though it’s located in the midst of a booming metro area.
We were welcomed as soon as we walked in and felt at home up until we left and I will say David & Kari Hunt, owners of the winery, did a very good job bringing the vintage old style architecture and feel of the downtown into the winery. The twists of modern concrete stained floors and almost art-deco ceiling fans, coupled with the historic stained glass, the pop out windows, made this place feel we just needed to walk in and sit down for a nice glass of wine. The place has a completely first class layout and a friendly, knowledgeable staff that makes sure your experience at the winery is a memorable experience.
The wine list consists of 10 wines from sweet to dry and white to reds. Not being sweet wine drinkers, there were two, maybe three, that were not on our personal list; however, we tried them all and found many we preferred. There is a fee for tastings $10 for 5 tastes or $15 for 5 taste and food pairing. They do have glasses for purchase with the winery’s logo for around $6.00.
By the end of the night we wound up purchasing 6 out of the 10 wines available and purchased a second bottle we both agreed upon, which is what this post is about. I personally have not experienced enough Texas Syrah to compare among other Texas Syrah. However, this varietal caught my taste buds from the first swirl and sniff of the wonderful fruit I was about to ingest. Since it was my birthday and I had not planned on taking notes so for the life of me I cannot remember where the grapes were from. I do know that they were from the Lubbock area.
The color was of deep dark ruby to almost garnet red. The nose gave off hints of smoke, vanilla and cherry. After swirling and taking in the aromas of the nose, the taste produced earthy soil, dark black cherry, and dark plum with pepper and smoky oak. The wine is rounded out with a nice hint of baking spices.
This particular wine was aged around 3 years in American Oak. This is a bold and complex wine with an earthy presence up front and a very nice smooth cherry finish. If you’re looking for a nice wine to sip by a fire with a nice cigar then this is a wine for you. You cannot go wrong with this wine even if you do not smoke cigars. I found this wine to be complex yet well balanced with just the right acidity and tannins and think this bottle could be laid down for a few years and a nice Texas Wine to enjoy a few years down the road. So with that said, buy a few to drink now and a few to pop open down the road. Truly a great tasting Texas wine! Cheers y’all!
Article by Dave Potter The Grapes Around Texas for Texas Wine and Trail Magazine