After being opened for two years, this small family boutique winery is producing some good local handcrafted wines.  What began as a hobby for owners Rick and Patty Wendt is now an upcoming winery business.  They have about four acres of grapes planted in the estate, plus a few peach trees.  The varietals include: Merlot, Black Spanish, Marechal Foch, and Blanc du Bois.  The vines range from two to six years old.  Other grapes/juices used to make their wines are sourced from around Texas and California.  This may be the only vineyard in Texas trying out Marechal Foch.  They have a lengthy menu of offerings to sample in their tasting room. At this time there were ten available to try. You will get a fairly good range from whites to reds with some dry, but their focus is on more sweet wines, as they are focused more on producing what they like. Most of their wines will be in the 375ml bottle.  One unusual notable one was the “bubbly” cabernet sauvignon.  It was made that way on purpose as Rick experimented with champagne yeast on this one.  It’s actually quite good and fruit forward.   The Blanc du Bois is quite tasty when chilled.  You’ll also be fortunate to try a vertical of their Black Spanish ports from 2008 to 2011.  A fine example of how Texas climate can change the flavor of the same grape annually depending on our wonderful weather conditions. Unfortunately, in years past they offered a peach wine as well however, the last freeze of 2013 didn’t fare well for their peach crop, so there was no peach wine for us to try on this visit.  Rick likes to experiment and try different things with wines, so check back from time to time to see what he has created.  This place has a great panoramic view of the countryside. The owners have a back area where you can enjoy live music and events and a lake view.  They are a great couple to chat and sip with, so go ahead and travel that gravel road and sip a spell.

IMG_3956 - Lily Lake Vineyards

www.lilylakevineyards.com

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