In March 2016, Wedding Oak Winery made their first expansion in the Texas Hill Country, setting up a tasting room at Wildseed Farms. In December 2018, the location closed as the winery readied a new one. Five months later, Wedding Oak Winery’s new location in Fredericksburg opened.
I went to visit on a quiet Friday afternoon and luckily got to speak with Mike McHenry and Dyana Pemberton. While I was there, they invited me to an upcoming media event the following Wednesday. I enjoyed my tasting and made plans to return in a few days.
The media event celebrated the opening of two tasting rooms: Wedding Oak and Los Pinos Ranch Vineyards. The two wineries are located in a single building, each taking one half. Both wineries wanted a space on Wine Road 290, so after brainstorming, they decided to co-brand the site. From there, each crafted their own special space, offering guests two different Texas wine experiences.
We began at Wedding Oak Winery, where Mike, Dyana, winemaker Seth Urbanek, and tasting room manager Lisa welcomed us in with a glass of Bridal Bliss. We first mingled, sipping on the bubbles, enjoying charcuterie, and previewing the space.
The new tasting room is open and bright. Tastings will be done at the bar, much like at the main location in San Saba, and there are high top tables nearby. For those wishing to sit and enjoy a glass or bottle, numerous tables with chairs are available, as well as a comfortable couch.
They have a room set off for reserved tastings and wine club. The room seats 10 at the table and can accommodate an additional four in other seats in the room. This separate room has two main windows that look out into the tasking room and an open archway rather than a door. The entire space is very inviting.
After our tour of the inside space, we collected out on the back patio for a tasting. The back patio offers comfortable outdoor seating, tables and chairs, and a large table. Right now, the open space past the patio is not much to look at, but the green space will offer additional seating and other amusements.
Seth took us through a tasting of five new wines, while Mike, Dyana, and Lisa helped pour. Most of the wines (except the rosé) were premium wines—they all have a black label.
- 2018 Albariño: This was the first wine Seth worked on from start to finish. The grapes came from the vineyard at Wildseed Farms. The wine is crisp and clean with a hint of residual sugar (much like similar wines produced in the Finger Lakes region).
- 2018 Trebbiano: This is a limited release wine with grapes sourced from the Paka Family Vineyards in the Texas High Plains. Seth went more of a natural route with this wine. After fermentation, he let the wine develop on its own. This approach created a fruit forward wine with strong minerality.
- 2018 Rosato di Sangiovese: This new rosé is lush and ripe with lots of fruit, especially strawberries. Seth did a 24-hour cold soak before pressing off the juice for the wine. It recently won Silver at the 2019 Experience Rosé.
- 2017 Montepulciano: Seth likes using Italian grapes and it shows in this wine. The ripe fruits with minerality creates a rich wine. The grapes came from the Diamante Doble Vineyard in the Texas High Plains. They aged the wine on neutral oak for eighteen months.
- 2017 Petite Verdot: The grapes come from Narra Vineyards in the Texas High Plains. The wine was structured and bold. And though many Texas reds come out a little light on color, this grape produced its typical deep, inky purple color.
After our tasting, we all received a good bag which included a logo glass and other info about Wedding Oak Winery. Once outside, a beautiful Hill Country sunset greeted us. Then we took the short walk next door to Los Pinos Ranch Vineyards.