Some Texas wineries have opened in recent years, and they have an immediate impact on wine lovers who visit them, and the word spreads. One of those wineries is Adega Vinho located in Stonewall. The family-run winery has the winemaking duties done by Michael Bilger. I visited Michael earlier this year and enjoyed a tasting and tour. We are happy to present Michael Bilger as this month’s winemaker profile!
- What did you do before becoming a winemaker (if anything)?
Before becoming a winemaker, I worked many jobs. I built some vineyards in Wimberley and helped plant Cab Franc and Sangiovese in 2009. That’s when I caught the bug. Growing grapes really intrigued me. Those vines are still alive today!
- What is the toughest challenge about being a winemaker in Texas?
The toughest challenge for me is picking at the right time if you’re buying from other vineyards across this massive state. It’s tough to be everywhere, so our grower relationships are important.
- Is winemaking an art or a science or both?
It all depends on if the winemaker is making wine based purely on science or if the winemaker is more of a craftsman or woman with the wine. It’s all up to the winemaker.
- What is your favorite food and wine pairing?
Gulf Coast oysters, saltines, and our 2021 Viognier.
- If you didn’t make wine, what would you do?
I would grow more grapes.
- What first attracted you to winemaking and how long have you been doing it?
This is my sixth harvest making wine and I love it.
- What is the most common question you are asked as a winemaker?
You’re the winemaker?
- After a long day in the winery or vineyard, what do you do?
I come home and love being a daddy to my son.
- What’s the greatest part about being a winemaker?
Besides the wine, the best part is making wine from grapes that you have grown. It’s incredible.
- What is your winemaking philosophy, that is, what are you trying to achieve with your wines?
I’m making wines trying to intervene as least as possible pushing the fruit; some wines truly reflect the terroir of the vineyard. We’d like to think about our Estate the most. These wines are steered into single vineyard designation or blends that reflect whole regions sometimes or even the entire state!
- Anything else you would like to add?
Thanks for all that you and Texas Wine Lover do.
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