By Kim and Mike Gregg, wine enthusiasts and Texas wine lovers
Whisper Path Cellars is now offering tastings by appointment at their working winery in San Antonio. Located at 12123 Jones Maltsberger, just north of the airport, it is a true urban winery. Situated within an industrial complex, you may think you are in the wrong place, but you have arrived! There is a small sign on the building identifying that you are in the right place.
The owners, Jesse and Kyn Villarreal, and their son-in-law, Michael, were very welcoming and made us feel right at home. Jesse began making wine over 20 years ago from a winemaking kit. Over the years, he made a lot of wine, mostly for personal consumption. And the family always helped. They researched the Texas wine regions and tried various varieties of grapes and blends to perfect their wines. In 2016, with all of their six children grown, Jesse and Kyn decided to make it real. They took things commercial. They consider Whisper Path to be a small craft winery where they can offer top-quality wine to wine enthusiasts.
Jesse’s full-time business is JV Electric which offers commercial electrical contracting and residential electric work. He converted the warehouse space into their functioning winery. At first, he used just a small space in the corner for his laboratory, and today the entire warehouse houses his passion project.
The current tasting includes five wines and there is also a food-pairing option available. We started with the 2021 Viognier. This wine has notes of tropical fruits with a velvety mouth feel and fruity finish. Next was the 2021 Roussanne, which is a very nice dry white wine, with hints of apricot and limestone. The 2020 Belle Mélange is a Rhône blend of Roussanne and Viognier, combining the best of both. All the grapes for these white wines were sourced from Crooked Post Vineyard in the Texas High Plains.
The 2018 San Antonio Rosé is a blend of Dolcetto and Montepulciano, both from the Diamante Doble Vineyard in the High Plains. This wine is big-time strawberries with a pleasant tropical fruit finish. Next up was the 2019 Montepulciano with balanced fruit and earthy notes and a lingering dark fruit finish. The last wine we tried was the 2019 Tempranillo sourced from Reddy Vineyards. This wine has a dark red color with rich black fruit flavors and a nice tannic finish. To round out the tasting, we were thrilled to sample from the tank the 2021 San Antonio Rosé, which will bottled soon and released later this year.
We are so happy to have a Texas winery in San Antonio with excellent wines and energetic fun-loving owners. We will definitely be back. The family is working on plans for a larger wine production facility and tasting room. Make an appointment for a tasting or food pairing now before the secret is out!