We recently attended a media/trade event for Yates, a new winery addition to the Spicewood Vineyards family of wineries. It is located on the north side of Wine Road 290, just east of Hye, Texas. Ron Yates and family have been busting their humps for nearly a decade now, learning and perfecting the art of growing wine in Texas. They have obviously done very well with Spicewood Vineyards, and now they are embarking on a new adventure with Yates, their Highway 290 winery bearing the family name. This is a really exciting opportunity they have been waiting for, which allows them to literally build the facility from the ground up. Fancy new winemaking equipment will be part of that opportunity as well, which is exciting for Todd Crowell, the winemaker. Todd is also the winemaker for Spicewood Vineyards, so if you have tasted their wines, rest assured you can expect the same quality and attention to detail as Todd puts into those wines.
The winery is scheduled to officially open in September 2016, so we’re not too far away from enjoying the fruits of their labor! Spicewood Vineyards will continue to produce wines from the estate vineyards, while Yates will be focusing its energy on grapes from the Yates estate vineyard, as well as fruit from the entire state of Texas, including the Texas Hill Country, Texas High Plains, and the Davis Mountains.
The winery property sits on a 15.8 acre Hill Country site on the north side of Highway 290. There are currently four acres of vines planted, mainly Tempranillo, with four to six more acres planned in the future. The production building is a 6,000 square-foot space designated for winemaking, and its breathtaking patio will be the site for tasting wines until the new pavilion is built. This offers a covered area to taste wines, as well as beautiful views overlooking the vineyard. The large space is equipped for a 20,000 case production volume, and includes an attached 1,800 square-foot covered crush pad at the rear of the building.
The future holds some pretty awesome things for Yates. In a few months’ time, this will include a pavilion that will provide more tasting space, including cheese and wine pairings, and there will even be a swimming pool with rentable cabanas, and an outdoor kitchen with Yates wines on tap, near the pavilion. How cool is that?! In a few years’ time, a new tasting room will be built. It will be a 5,000 square-foot facility, boasting stunning space for tasting wine, and a very large underground cellar. This space will be used for aging wine, including Gran Reserva style Tempranillo, and allow space with floor to ceiling glass to observe the barrels while enjoying wines in a private setting. Once the tasting room is open in the coming years, the pavilion will then become the wine club area.
We highly recommend you check out Yates when they open their doors in September. Upon opening, tastings will be by appointment only, so be sure and call ahead to reserve your tasting on the patio. We have tasted the wines scheduled for release, and I must say they are pretty solid. The Tempranillo and Mourvèdre were my two favorites from the evening at Yates.