Arnulfo Perez is a winemaker in East Texas. Arnulfo has kept a low profile in the past letting his wines do the talking, but in recent years he now appears at wine festivals and conventions like the TWGGA (Texas Wine & Grape Growers Association) Conference. With a smile always on his face, it is a pleasure this month to feature Arnulfo Perez for the winemaker profile.
- What did you do before becoming a winemaker (if anything)?
I was the Vineyard Manager at Los Pinos Ranch Vineyards.
- What is the toughest challenge about being a winemaker in Texas?
Changing the public’s perception of Texas wines which have come a long way in quite a short period of time. Then it would be consistency and making sure we have enough Texas fruit to meet the demand, because once folks try it, folks love it. Texans are proud by nature and loyal to Texas products.
- Is winemaking an art or a science or both?
Science, Art, Hope, Luck, Blood, Sweat & Tears. It all begins in the vineyards.
- What is your favorite food and wine pairing?
Texas High Plains Cabernet Sauvignon paired with a high end cut of beef.
- If you didn’t make wine, what would you do?
Continue to farm my vineyards, plant more, and develop new and improved techniques for future grape growers.
- What first attracted you to winemaking and how long have you been doing it?
Becoming one with Mother Nature in the vineyards all throughout the grape’s growth cycle, and seeing the fruits of my labor going into each and every bottle. I have been making wine for 15 years and counting.
- What is the most common question you are asked as a winemaker?
“How do you continue to top year by year all the international awards your wines keep winning?”
- After a long day in the winery or vineyard, what do you do?
Relax and enjoy a glass of Blanco Grande (dry Blanc du Bois) on the tasting deck overlooking our estate vineyards.
- What’s the greatest part about being a winemaker?
Just knowing that I’m blessed to be able to make award winning wines that people really love to enjoy and share our wines and story with others.
- What is your winemaking philosophy, that is, what are you trying to achieve with your wines?
Old world grape to bottle wines with true Texas swagger. Let our grapes, terroir, and resulting wines speak for themselves.
- Anything else you would like to add?
My story is one that others can identify with in that I am living the American dream that so many others seek in a better, more productive life by coming to this great State of Texas.