Happy Virginia Wine Month! Yes, October is Texas?s wine month but the month also belongs to Virginia. You know what?s funny? While I?m a Texan through and through, I did live in Virginia for 4 years, so I kind of like that the two states share a wine month. In fact, Virginia is where I really started exploring wine. I got it in my head one day to check out a polo tournament and wine festival being held in The Plains. I have no idea why this sounded like fun- I wasn?t a huge fan of wine and I knew nothing about polo, but I went. And tried all kinds of wine from dozens of wineries. There was strawberry wine, chocolate wine, pepper wine (hottest thing ever!), viognier, cabernet franc, petit verdot, and many others. I enjoyed quite a few of them and my eyes were officially opened to the wonderful world of wine. I also watched polo for the first time, which was pretty fun even though I had no clue what was happening.
Texas is considered a bit of an upstart in some wine circles, but the history of winemaking and grape growing goes back to 1662 when the first vineyard in North America was established by Franciscan priests. The industry developed over the centuries until today, when there are 8 AVAs in Texas with 4,000 acres of vineyards and over 400 wineries. The AVAs exist throughout Texas in various landscapes, including desert, hill country, and plains. As a result, Texas vineyards are able to support a large variety of grapes.
Fall is seriously the best season! The weather is cooler, so it?s more fun to spend some time outside, and there are tons of wine festivals! This past weekend was my birthday weekend (and The Sugar Vine?s anniversary!!!), so the boyfriend and I headed north for the Montgomery Wine and Music Fest. It was fun to wander around, sip wine, and shop while listening to music. It was a warm day but the festival had a great atmosphere and we had a really nice time. To get you in on the fall spirit, I?ve compiled a list of some of the best fall wine festivals around Texas!
One of the things I love about Houston is that we have a huge variety of everything, including wine bars. Are you into an upscale, Euro-centric experience? There?s a wine bar for that. How about a neighborhood bar with gobs of history and great wine? We have one of those, too. Are you overwhelmed by the choices? That?s okay because I have some favorites that I am so excited to share with you! Although my favorite wine bars each have their own take on wine, they all have one thing in common: They enjoy wine, they enjoy sharing it with you, and they are all about having fun with wine.
I?ve got a question for you. This may seem a little odd in light of this being a wine and dessert blog, but bear with me. At what temperature do you set your thermostat? Seriously, what temperature is ?room temperature? for you? For me, if I loved alone, it would be about 78. I live with my sisters, who are apparently polar bears, so it?s at 74. They?re comfortable; I?m often in a sweatshirt and pants. The boyfriend sets his thermostat even colder, at 72. So what?s your ?room temperature??