One of my favorite under-the-radar “winelands” is the town of Grapevine, Texas, just outside Dallas.
While the city of Santa Barbara, Calif., is gaining widespread recognition for its relatively new “urban wine trail”–as you’ll read about tomorrow here on VinesseTODAY–Grapevine has been attracting visitors to its downtown winery tasting rooms and wine bars for years.
In the early days of Texas winemaking, determined vintners tried just about every grape variety available in seeking to determine which ones “took” to the north Texas climate. More recently, most have narrowed their focus, and cut down on the number of varieties grown. Some even have begun importing juice from other winegrowing areas–including California and even the Mendoza region of Argentina–and are focused simply on making good wine, regardless of the grapes’ place of origin.
A great way to experience the wines of Grapevine (and beyond) is to visit during one of the town’s many special events.
Here’s a look at what’s coming up during the balance of the year…
3rd annual SummerBlast: Continues through Sept. 5, with “Summer Nights” activities downtown (through July), Friday night fireworks over Lake Grapevine (through Sept. 2) and more.
Grapevine Market and Farmers Market: The Grapevine Market is held at Liberty Park on Thursdays and Saturdays through Oct. 15, and features open-air, European-style shopping for handmade jewelry, antiques and more. The Grapevine Farmers Market surrounds the Town Square Gazebo on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays through Oct. 15, and shines the spotlight on Texas products such as bell peppers, pecans, olive oil, salsa, honey, tamales herbs, grains and more.
25th annual Grapefest: This is the big wine event of the year in Grapevine, this year set for Sept. 15-18. There’s non-stop entertainment on multiple stages, a carnival and midway, a grape stomp, special events at all nine winery tasting rooms and more. It’s one of the few family-friendly wine festivals in the country, and it always attracts big crowds.
Hallo-Wine Trail: Three times each year…in February, July and October… the tasting rooms present special tastings, live entertainment and more. On Oct. 29, it’ll be the Hallo-Wine Trail event, promising a sensationally spooky time for visitors.
Christmas Wine Trains: The Grapevine Vintage Railroad will offer special wine excursions on Dec. 8, 15 and 22.
To learn more about what’s happening wine-wise and otherwise in Grapevine, call 800-457-6338, or visit: grapevinetexasusa.com.