Hico is a well-known Texas destination for pies, chicken fried steak, handmade chocolates, and Billy the Kid stories.  Now, add to this list, good wine with the addition of the latest boutique winery located in the heart of downtown.  Owner Phil Lopez is no stranger to wines and vines.  Having spent just over two decades in California working in the wine industry and vineyards, he is well versed in the art and science.  He is aware of the unique challenges that Texas poses grape growers, but that does not daunt him, in fact, it just makes him more determined to prove that he can use his experience and skills gained in California to improve and perfect his growing techniques and winemaking in Texas. Silver Spur has been opened for just over a year and currently offers eight wines on their tasting menu.  The ’15 and 16’ wines are from California. Phil has some vineyards he is leasing in Comanche County near Newburg, Texas to make his Texas wines.  He currently has one Texas wine available for sale while the others continue to mature.  His Texas Chardonnay is quite elegant and soft – not your typically strong oak and buttery Chardonnay, but it is quite pleasant for these hot Texas days when chilled.  The rest of the wines are California fruit, yet, worth your time to stop in to try.  The Viognier is very aromatic with honeysuckle notes.  The California Chardonnay is much different than the Texas one. It has more cream and vanilla notes with higher acids and is blended with Marsanne and Roussanne.  The first red,we tried was the 2016 Charbolla (Pinot Noir).  It had a light color and strong tannins affording a nice long finish.  Next up was the J.W II, which was a double blend Zinfandel with wonderful floral notes and dark fruit and pepper notes. The Cabernet Sauvignon, called Donaciano II, was lighter than most cabs yet still presented some bold earthy flavors and a touch of smokiness. Last, was the Flora, a full-bodied Syrah that was quite opaque and packed strong berry notes with a clean silky finish.  We got a bonus tasting of their upcoming inaugural Texas Tempranillo. It was aged in both American and French oak and had a smooth texture with some soft smokiness. It will be a few months before his first Texas red will be for sale.  Other Texas wines that are currently in the works include an Aglianico, Tannat, and Sangiovese.  We enjoyed our visit and having the opportunity to chat and learn more about their story. We look forward to trying these upcoming wines soon, as well.  Phil is very passionate about what he does and will be more than happy to talk to you about his love for wine making.  This winery fits right in with the town and is a great addition to the many shops and interesting places to visit when you pass through or stop and stay a while in Hico. Even if you still mispronounce Hico, they’ll be glad to teach you how to pronounce it correctly over some great wine. Do stop by and visit and enjoy meeting these fine folks and experience new and interesting wines you can enjoy as you try to beat this Texas heat!

IMAG5686 - Silver Spur Winery