Watch out Burnet, your wine trail is growing! The newest member, 7 Creeks Vineyard has been open for about a month now, with their official grand opening event held on Saturday, August 10th. Located at 400 County Road 200A, in Burnet, just outside of the town of Bertram, this new winery is a family affair with the Horne family. Parents Jerry and Janis along with their sons Briggs and Stewart and daughter in law Carole have been working together since 2017 when the property was purchased to plant the vines and get the tasting room built. They have successfully planted seven acres of vines already with Alicante Bouschet, Mourvèdre, Souzão, Tannat, and Vermentino.
The Vermentino is the newest block recently planted, with the others in their second leaf this year. They plan to harvest fruit next year on their third leaf and are eagerly anticipating their first estate harvest. Based on the vigor of their vines and the grapes still hanging in the vineyard from this year, they have healthy vines that should do well.
Their tasting menu features both wines sourced from California and Texas grapes. The 2017 Chardonnay was sourced from fruit from Lodi, California. This stainless steel aged crisp white highlights the grape and minerality inherent with this varietal. This was refreshing to sip on the warm August morning we stopped in to visit. This wine has lovely fruit flavors and is very approachable since this varietal can scare some wine drinkers away when super oaked.
The second wine sourced from Lodi fruit is their 2016 Old Vine Zinfandel. This red features grapes from 42-year old vines producing concentrated flavors. This is a bold wine with a rich ruby hue and subtle spice with soft white pepper notes. Truly delightful.
Dr. Robert Young of Bending Branch Winery has helped produce their Texas High Plains wines. The 2016 Mourvèdre was produced using the cryo-maceration technique that Bending Branch is known for and with fruit from Reddy Vineyards. The brick red colored wine has some spice and green pepper notes and a certain boldness yet does not overpower.
The 2017 Alicante Bouschet has a dark garnet color and is lovely. This is crafted with a varietal that only a few Texas wineries are currently using. The wine is perfect with subtle leather notes and smooth stable tannins. This happened to be my personal favorite; however, the full tasting menu did not disappoint.
The 2015 Souzão likewise had a deep red color and was produced with fruit from the Alta Mesa. Another richly hued red that is dry with smooth tannins and finish. Lots of delightful fruit packed into this bottle.
A special treat for those who enjoy the sparkle of bubbles, they have a 2014 Cuvée Blanc de Blanc that is typically only available by the glass or bottle and is not available on the tasting menu. Do not let that dissuade you if you like a good Champagne. This is made in that French method with 100 percent select Chardonnay grapes. There are tons of bubbles in the glass and you will smile with glee and eager anticipation of taking that first sip. Once those tiny bubbles begin to burst in your mouth, you get the lovely bakery and toasty brioche notes of this slightly dry but not too dry beauty. This is the real deal and well worth getting a glass. I got a bottle to take home and suggest you do the same. Always a good idea to have some bubbles on hand.
The tasting room faces the vineyard and an impressive stand of old oak trees that helped sell the location to the owners. There are chairs and tables set up underneath the oaks and the tasting room has a large covered patio with tables and chairs offering an inviting space for folks to come out and picnic and enjoy the day. They say there is always a nice breeze on that side of the property. The inside tasting room was designed to make guests feel like they are entering someone’s living room. They want you to feel invited to sit and get comfortable and stay a while as you enjoy your time with the wines, the staff, and your friends and family along with you on the adventure.
Their philosophy is pretty simple, to produce really good wines. They also set their sights on using grape varietals and featuring some things that were different from the other wineries in the area. The goal is to have guests stop in and delight in seeing something new on their tasting menu that they may not find elsewhere. I believe they have succeeded in that mission and I cannot wait to return and try future releases already in the works. They have a wine club featuring mixed wines, all whites, and all reds. Stop in and let them know you heard about them from Texas Wine Lover.