We were going to Corpus Christi for the weekend and decided to visit some wineries along the way. Beneath the Oaks Winery was one of them. It is located in Midfield and is owned by Lorene Piwonka.
We arrived at the winery and were greeted first by a small vineyard in front growing Black Spanish and Champanel. The winery’s tasting room was on the left, but the road led to the right where we soon saw a chapel followed by everything you could possibly want to hold a wedding. These included things such as a groom’s quarters, bridal suite, reception hall, and even overnight accommodations. We then arrived at the winery which is what we were looking for at the moment.
The tasting room was very nice and we stood at the bar to do our tasting. We learned the winery holds 46-47 weddings a year which is understandable with all the amenities. Besides weddings, they also hold concerts and events like a writer’s retreat where writers from all over the country come to. The location began as a wedding location and then they decided to become a winery. And that’s why we were there that day.
The wine list is large and there are three selections you can make: four wines of your choice, eight wines, or twelve wines. These were the wines available at the time of our visit:
- Riesling (sweet)
- Something White (sweet Muscadine)
- Patriot (Nebbiolo and Moscato)
- Something Blue (sweet red wine infused with blueberries)
- Shanghai Red (Nebbiolo)
- Cabernet Sauvignon (bourbon barrel)
- Angelia Rosé (semi-sweet)
- Sparkling Moscato
We were told all wines are Texas wines except the Chardonnay and Muscadine. They have an Estate Black Spanish dessert wine, but they were out of it when we were there.
We noticed none of the wines had a vintage date and when we inquired, we were told the wines are “short aged” which meant they are made in 60-90 days. I had not heard of this technique before especially if most of the wines were made from Texas grapes. Since we learned the wines were made by Dan Marek of Georgetown Winery and Thirsty Mule Winery, I reached out to him to learn more.
Dan said the wines are left on the skins for only two to three days and aged up to 10-12 months. They make the wine that they call “red wine with training wheels.” It is very light on oak and tannin and usually, someone liking whites or sweet wines considers them easy drinking wines to learn how to enjoy red wines.
Dan also said they currently make wines for 32 wineries in Texas. I know we have come across other wineries with wines he has made, and I certainly have seen many awards at wine competitions over the years from Dan.
We had to continue our trip to Corpus Christi, so we thanked everybody and left. On our way out of the estate, we saw a large grass field with running sprinklers. We had found out earlier the owners also own a grass farm. If you are not aware of a grass farm like some of us didn’t, these are the farms that grow the grass sod when you need to buy sod for your lawn.