Owners Alphonse Dotson and Martha Cervantes of Wines of Dotson-Cervantes have always been wonderful people to meet and spend time with, and they have established a long history in the Texas wine industry by providing quality grapes from their vineyard Certenberg Vineyards.
They started making their own wine and opened their winery in November 2014 in Pontotoc, but recently relocated the winery to their vineyard in Voca. I had not had the chance to visit their vineyard before, and along with the new winery location, this was finally my chance to see the vineyard along with taste whatever new wines they had to offer.
I arrived at the winery location and began the drive up the road. I was wondering if the road was going to end as I drove past the dormant vineyard, but I eventually arrived at the new winery building. Alphonse Dotson was at the door trying to get a signal from his phone because the metal building blocked signals, and since the winery had recently opened, they had not had the opportunity to install Wi-Fi yet.
The building is divided into two sections with the production area to the left and the tasting room to the right. The tasting room had an L-shaped tasting bar, some barrel tables, and some comfy couches and chairs. I sat at the tasting bar with Alphonse behind ready to pour my first taste of his wine.
Tastings are available for a tasting fee and that includes their current five wines. You can also buy wines by the glass. During the tasting, pretzels and cheese are available for palate cleansing. These are the wines I was able to taste at the time of my visit:
- 2017 Rosé de Rosé (30% Chardonnay, 3% Merlot, 43% Muscat Canelli, 24% Moscato), Texas Hill Country
- 2015 Perseverance (75% Muscat Canelli, 5% Moscato, 13% Malvasia Bianco, 7% Chardonnay), Texas Hill Country
- 2016 Perseverance (56% Muscat Canelli, 22% Moscato, 20% Malvasia Bianco, 2% Chardonnay), Texas Hill Country and Texas High Plains
- 2015 Gotas de Oro (50% Chardonnay, 50% Muscat Canelli)
- 2017 Gotas de Oro (51% Chardonnay, 49% Muscat Canelli)
- 2016 Hailstorm (55% Merlot, 31% Cabernet Sauvignon, 11% Sangiovese, 3% Petite Sirah), Texas Hill Country
I had the opportunity to taste the 2015 Gotas de Oro (Spanish for Drops of Gold) to compare the difference between that vintage and the 2017. Gotas de Oro was the first wine offered from Wines of Dotson-Cervantes and the quality is still going strong.
You may have noticed the above grape listed in a few blends called Moscato. I certainly did and had to question Alphonse as to this new grape. It turns out the TTB who approves label does not allow Muscat Giallo which is the real grape used, so Alphonse had to use the word Moscato instead and that was approved for the label. Go figure. I am sure there will be a change coming from the TTB on that soon, just like they had to add the words Black Spanish in the past few years instead of just allowing Lenoir.
Alphonse Dotson is the winemaker for all his wines now. There are currently five wines available but ten wines in the production tanks.
From the tank, I did get a sneak taste of an upcoming wine which may be available now. It is another dessert wine coming in at 16.9% alcohol made from Chardonnay, Muscat Canelli, Muscat Giallo, and some Orange Muscat Brandy. Wow! I could have sat with Alphonse all afternoon drinking this wine and I’ll have to order some when it is available. There is a little story on the Orange Muscat Brandy, but I’ll let Alphonse tell you that when you visit.
Alphonse Dotson had some mentoring by experienced winemakers for his first wines, and I can honestly say that he has perfected white wines, dry all the way up to sweet. If you are in the area, definitely stop by the new location of Wines of Dotson-Cervantes and let them know Texas Wine Lover sent you!