El Gaucho Winery is located in the Hill Country in Spicewood and is owned by Bennett and Eugenia Sewell. The winery opened in 2015. When Bennett went to Mendoza years ago, he fell in love with the wines. Later when deciding to open a winery in Texas, he started working with his consultant, Eugenia who is originally from Mendoza, and they eventually became husband and wife. Together today, they make El Gaucho Winery another destination when visiting Spicewood.
After some winding roads in the Hill Country, El Gaucho Winery appears after a climb up a small hill to the winery. It was a little confusing where to park, either on a lower level which we did, or when we started walking up the hill to the winery, there was another parking lot, but we were not sure if we were allowed to park there.
El Gaucho Winery appears to be a house turned tasting room, and there is a large tasting room with many tables inside to enjoy the wine. Tastings are held while standing at the tasting bar and Bennett Sewell was there to handle our tasting because his wife Eugenia was out picking up their son. There is one tasting fee for what they call their three Classic wines, another fee for their Reserve wines, and a higher fee for all six wines. Tastings are poured from the uncorked bottles.
The winery specializes in Argentine wines and in particularly Malbec which is grown and sourced in Argentina. We opted to share a six wine tasting so we could enjoy all wines. It didn’t hurt that we love Malbec, especially after our trip to Mendoza with the Nice Winery from Houston. All the wines from El Gaucho Winery are single vineyard estate grown wines.
These are the wines we tasted:
- Estado Natural Chardonnay 2012
- Estado Natural Rosé 2015 (of Malbec)
- Estado Natural Malbec 2013 (stainless)
- Tierra de Gaucho Reserva Malbec 2007 (oaked). This is also the first vineyard they purchased.
- Estado Natural Reserve Malbec 2010 (aged 12 months in French and American oak). This is the second vineyard they purchased about 50 miles away from the first vineyard.
- Estado Natural Gran Reserve Malbec 2009 (aged 18 months in French oak)
The number of cases produced for El Gaucho Winery is 1,000 cases a year. Food is available to purchase at the winery. On the menu is a classic cheese plate, chocolate cheese & fruit plate, empanadas, wine and chocolate pairings, and Provotela (provolone cheese melted in an iron skillet with Chimichurri sauce). If you have a bigger appetite, wait until Sundays and you can enjoy asado which is a traditional barbecue from Argentina.
Events are held at the winery such as corporate events, wine tasting and pairing, a brick oven pizza demo (next one is June 16, 2016!), and other small events. The gift shop has items such as artisan chocolates. There is a wine club at El Gaucho Winery.
One thing not mentioned yet is the winery is a family friendly winery. Family friendly? Children are welcome to join their parents and in the back of the tasting room is a very cool playground with teepees and rock gardens. Comfortable tables and chairs, and Latin music playing outside makes the back of the tasting room a very pleasant place to enjoy a glass of wine.
If you are fine with a Texas winery currently serving non-Texas wines, but excellent Argentine wines, definitely make a trip to El Gaucho Winery, and enjoy the excellent wine, view, and family friendly atmosphere.