During our Weekend Getaway to Fredericksburg in December, we hit the wine trail responsibly via 290 Wine Shuttle. This hop on/hop off service from downtown Fredericksburg to select wineries along 290 is the best way to spend a busy Saturday in the Texas Wine Country. No driving, no worries, and surprisingly no lines or waiting. They’ll even take purchases back to Fredericksburg for you at no additional cost. We visited Becker Vineyards, Fat Ass Ranch & Winery, 4.0 Cellars, Wedding Oak Winery at Wildseed Farms, Armadillo’s Leap Winery, Six Shooter Cellars, and The Vintage Cellar all in one day.
What we thought of the winery: Becker is one of my favorite wineries, since it was one of the stops on my first wine trail over a decade ago (back when they still bottled in the basement). I’ve since watched them grow into the powerhouse that they are, and they’ve managed to keep the “French wine country in Texas” charm. The tasting room is now large and efficient, and there is a wide variety of wines to fit anyone’s taste. A word of advice: go early to avoid the Saturday crowd, or just grab a bottle to enjoy on the lawn. The property is beautiful, spacious, and relaxing.
What we tasted: 2014 Reserve Roussanne, 2014 White Wing, 2014 Chevaux Noir, 2014 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Canada Family Vineyard, 2014 Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Wilmeth Family Vineyard, 2015 Clementine, 2012 Vintage Port, and mulled wine
What we brought home: Herbs d’ Provence, mulling wine spices, lavender lotion and soap, syrup, and peach glaze (this place was a one-stop Christmas shop!)
What we thought of the winery: This place is a trip! They don’t take themselves too seriously, and that is a refreshing approach to the Texas Wine industry that is for the most part unpretentous to begin with. The tasting room is huge, with so much bar space that even busy we didn’t have to fight our way to a tasting. The staff is super friendly as well. I love the logo, love the labels, and love the silo outhouses. Looks like the property is primed for some great parties! Also veteran friendly, they will give veterans a 10% discount (thank you!).
What we tasted: Dry Tasting Lineup including Texas Muscat, Merlot, Malbec, Tempranillo, Peach, and Prickly Pear Jala-Raspberry
What we brought home: Prickly Pear Jala-Raspberry
What we thought of the winery: Posh, open, and bright. I like that we can taste three wineries’ wines in one location (Lost Oak, McPherson, and 4.0 Cellars). The staff was very friendly, and we enjoyed the atmosphere so much that we had a glass of wine on the patio with a cheese plate, while we listened to a live band and people-watched a flanneled gang of bachelorette party goers dance.
What we tasted: Lost Oak Winery Saku White 2015, McPherson Cellars Clara’s Tribute White 2014, 4.0 Cellars Roussanne 2015, McPherson Cellars Cinsault 2015, Lost Oak Winery Dawson Red, Brennan Vineyards Winemaker’s Choice, and Brennan Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2014
What we brought home: 4.0 Cellars Roussanne 2015
What we thought of the winery: This new tasting room at Wildseed Farms is Wedding Oak’s second tasting room, and a perfect place to spend some time with a bottle of wine on their new patio. Very spacious, surrounded by wildflowers, and adjacent to shopping a cafe in Wildseed Farms. Staff was friendly and patient. Great wines with gorgeous labels!
What we tasted: The Red White and True to Texas Flight including Viognier High Valley 2014, Terre Blanc 2015, Terre Rouge High Valley 2014, Sangiovese Hill Country 2014, and Tuxedo Red 2015
What we brought home: Terre Rouge High Valley 2014
What we thought of the winery: Quaint log cabin atmosphere, quiet and warm. The staff was very friendly and casual.
What we tasted: Armadillo’s Leap 2015 Viognier, Armadillo’s Leap Texas Mourvedre, Armadillo’s Leap BFF Blend, Armadillo’s Leap Muscat, Armadillo’s Leap Yaaas! (you have to say that one out loud), and Stonewall Glogg
What we brought home: Armadillo’s Leap BFF Blend
What we thought of the winery: The quintesential Texasy winery with wood, red bandannas, and cowhide everywhere! This is a casual and bright (no really, I loved the lighting) tasting room that felt like the wild west (just super clean).
What we tasted: Clear Creek Riesling, Clear Creek Pinot Grigio, Clear Creek Spank Monkey Sangiovese, Clear Creek Barrel Aged Cabernet Sauvignon, and Clear Creek Barrel Aged Malbec
What we thought of the winery: Huge gift shop, fun side rooms (one with a live guitarist), and a dim casual chic atmosphere. This is another winery where we tasted wines from multiple vineyards. And I could’ve spent hours in that gift shop!
What we tasted: 2014 Perissos Viognier Estate Grown, 2012 Perissos Roussanne Texas High Plains, Val Verde Sierra Madre, 2014 Perissos Tempranillo Estate Grown, and Bending Branch Texas Tennat
What we brought home: A silly but cute wooden “Mr & Mrs” sign for our front door (this weekend getaway was our anniversary trip) and Bending Branch Texas Tennat