‘Tis the season. No, not for Winter and Christmas but time for most wine festivals to occur in Texas and time to drink some Texas wine.
Not all wine festivals occur during the Fall season because earlier this year we volunteered at the Old Town Spring SpringFest. We arrived for the first shift on the first day of the two day festival and it was cold! I guess that’s one of the issues when you have a festival at the beginning of March. Fortunately for them, it was warmer the second day so the turnout was better.
Because we volunteered together, they put us both at the Messina Hof table. We had just become members of the VIP club at Messina Hof so we were excited when we heard that. Unfortunately because it was so cold, not many people came by that morning which was certainly understandable, so we did not have much practice pouring for people. We also had not come prepared with cold weather gear either so we kept warm by drinking wines at neighboring tables. Hey, it’s good to volunteer!
This weekend we will be volunteering again at the 2011 Wine & Music Festival in Montgomery. We attended last year’s event and were very pleased with the number of Texas wineries pouring their wines. After our experience at SpringFest, we decided to volunteer. This year they are planning on having at least 16 Texas wineries attending. We think we are scheduled for the 1pm-3pm shift on September 17th so we can’t wait to see which Texas winery we end up helping.
Update: We just got our assignment for Montgomery and we’ll be working at the Messina Hof table (again) from 1pm-3pm. See you there!
We also went all out and volunteered at the Houston Wine Fest. Last year was the first year of Houston Wine Fest and they are expecting many more people this year. We went to last year’s event and there were only about five Texas wineries present and they are expecting more this year. This year they had so many people who wanted to work and some issues occurred last year that this year they are making these paid positions. We interviewed last week and we think the interview went well. We were told they will have 18 tents for wines (non-Texas) in addition to the Texas wineries who will be attending. We said we preferred to work for a Texas winery but anything can happen. We are supposed to hear for sure in a couple days. If we do work, we are supposed to be working on Saturday September 24th from 10am-3pm.
Update: Houston Wine Fest got out of hand and we were told we would not be helping a Texas winery, so we will not be pouring in Houston. We will still be attending though.
We are used to using a lever style corkscrew at home (Rabbit-style if you prefer) and most people at the wine festivals use a waiter’s pocket corkscrew. I found what is supposed to be the easiest kind to use this past weekend so we will come prepared with our own corkscrews since the one we attempted to use at SpringFest was not easy to use. The last thing I would think you want to do is look like you can’t open a bottle of wine!
Those are the big wine festivals we know around the Houston area. Others we know of elsewhere are:
GrapeFest (http://www.grapevinetexasusa.com/GrapeFest) – September 15-18. Probably one of the most popular in Texas located in Grapevine.
Tasting the Town (http://www.tastingthetown.com) – September 22nd located in Humble.
Houston Wine Fest (http://www.houstonwinefest.com) – September 24-25. Houston’s 2nd annual wine festival.
Williamson County Wine and Food Festival (http://www.thegeorgetownsquare.com/category.php?id=1) – September 24.
Texas Vineyards and Beyond (http://www.texasvineyardsbeyond.com/Page_2.html) – on September 24.
Texas Fall Fest & Wine Auction (http://www.texasfallfest.com) – September 30 and October 1.
Cleburne Wine Festival (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Cleburne-Wine-Festival-October-1-2011/131942626904073) – October 1.
Gruene Music & Wine Festival (http://www.gruenemusicandwinefest.org) – October 6-9.
Texas Reds Steak & Grape Festival (http://tr.blog.bryantx.gov) – October 8 in Bryan.
La Dolce Vita (http://www.amoa.org/site/PageServer?pagename=ladolcevita) – October 13.
Cajun Catfish Festival (http://www.conroecajuncatfishfestival.com) – October 14-16. We were told about this festival from one Texas winery so we assume others will be attending too.
Autumn Art & Texas Wine Festival (http://winefesttexas.com/) – October 15-16 in Old Town Spring.
Katy Wine Fest (http://www.katywinefest.com) – October 20. Unlimited wine tastings!
Cellar Classic (http://www.cellarclassic.com) – Houston October 19-22. Austin October 22. San Antonio October 8.
Taste Texas (http://www.fbgfoodandwinefest.com) – October 22.
Wine in the Pines (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Wine-in-the-Pines/185995998097811) – October 28-29. Mount Vernon.
Chocolate Festival (http://www.chocolatefestivaloftexas.com) – October 29.
What other wine festivals do you know about which people should attend?