We received the product for review and all opinions are our own.
As Texas continues to make more world-class wines, Texas wineries are being recognized with more top awards from world-renowned wine competitions. We saw this again recently at the 2021 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition where Texas wineries took home eleven Best of Class Awards. Texas Heritage Vineyard not only took home a Best of Class award for their 2018 Barbera, they also won a Double Gold for their 2018 Souzao along with four other medals. My wife and I really enjoyed our visit to the Texas Heritage Vineyard tasting room earlier last year, so I was happy to have the opportunity to try a few of their new highly decorated wines.
Let’s start with the 2018 Texas Heritage Vineyard Barbera. Barbera originated in the Piedmont region of northern Italy and is the fourth most planted red wine grape variety in Italy. The grapes for the Texas Heritage Barbera were sourced from Reddy Vineyards in the Texas High Plains AVA. The wine has a garnet color in the glass with lots of Bing cherry and notes of dried herbs and bay on the nose. The tart cherry is carried onto the palate along with notes of baking spice, black pepper, and just a hint of anise on the finish. While a lower tannin wine, the balanced acidity and moderate 12.2% ABV help make this a very food-friendly wine. Friday night is pizza night at our house and this Barbera was right at home. This is a great example of how well this northern Italian grape can make very enjoyable wines in Texas.
Next, we have the 2018 Texas Heritage Vineyard Souzao. Souzão has an interesting story in its homeland of Portugal. It’s native to northwestern Portugal where it is used to make dry wines. It was eventually adopted by Port producers to add color and acidity to their Ports, and now winemakers in the Douro Valley are using it increasingly to produce complex dry wines. The grapes for the Texas Heritage Souzao were sourced from Paka Vineyards in the Texas High Plains. As I poured this wine, I could tell it was going to be a true to form Souzão, showing a deep opaque purple color in the glass. The wine has a pronounced nose of blackcurrant, blackberry, and smoke. It offers flavors of dark plum, black cherry, blackberry, and black pepper. It has a very long finish supported by lots of dried dark fruit. I’d place it right between medium and full-bodied, and the 13.5% ABV makes this a very approachable wine. The Texas Heritage Souzao is asking to be paired with grilled beef, barbecue, or game. We enjoyed this wine with black pepper-crusted burgers.
The Johnson family built Texas Heritage Vineyard from the ground up and is proud to offer 100% Texas wines. Along with these new Barbera and Souzao releases they have several other new wines they are excited to share. They just released a 2018 Zinfandel which is now available at their tasting room. They also have a 2019 Estate Alicante Bouschet that will be released to wine club members in June and will be available in their tasting room in July. Events at the Texas Heritage Vineyards tasting room are starting to get back swinging as well. They will be having a San Jacinto Day event with live music and food for purchase on April 18th.