David and Paula Todd are the owners of TF Vineyard & Winery. They got into the business years ago because Paula wanted a vineyard, so David takes care of making the wines. Go visit TF Vineyard & Winery as we present David Todd as this month’s featured winemaker!
- What did you do before becoming a winemaker (if anything)?
Before becoming a winemaker (and at present), I am an IT guy working 40 hours a week on a computer.
- What is the toughest challenge about being a winemaker in Texas?
The toughest challenge for me is TIME. After getting off of work, which luckily is from home now, I go to the winery next door and put in another 4-6 hours to keep the winery and vineyard going.
- Is winemaking an art or a science or both?
Winemaking is definitely art but must be combined with the science in order to make it all flow together and become the best it is capable of being.
- What is your favorite food and wine pairing?
My favorite wine pairing is Blackened Salmon/Arugula Salad with a glass of Blanc du Bois off dry while my wife favors our Rosé.
- If you didn’t make wine, what would you do?
If I didn’t make wine, I would be traveling around in a travel trailer enjoying other winery’s wine and company.
- What first attracted you to winemaking and how long have you been doing it?
My wife wanted a vineyard, and I would tag along to some of the “tailgate” classes out in the field with Fritz Westover. I met incredible farmers and listened to their stories that inspired me to begin making wine in 2005. First it was kit wines, and then “sweat equity” fruit from working in vineyards in the Gulf Coast region. I learned more each year and then planted vines in our backyard for us both to continue to learn the basics.
- What is the most common question you are asked as a winemaker?
“How many bottles of wine can come out of an acre of grapes?” (Answer: Never enough; we have to purchase grapes from Ratliff Ranch in Boyd and others in Texas.) The other one is: “What is your favorite wine?” Answer: Whatever I’m drinking at the moment.
- After a long day in the winery or vineyard, what do you do?
After a long day, I enjoy pouring wine and playing a rousing game of spades with our customers and friends.
- What’s the greatest part about being a winemaker?
The greatest part of being a winemaker is the interaction with the customers and making friends as they enjoy sampling new varieties, ask questions, and come back again and again.
- What is your winemaking philosophy, that is, what are you trying to achieve with your wines?
My winemaking philosophy is to make the best wine using our grapes as well as from other Texas grape growers, and to find ways to make drinking Texas wines enjoyable and family friendly.
- Anything else you would like to add?
I love hearing customers try our Blanc du Bois (white) after saying they only drink red wine and happily admitting that they really enjoyed it.