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Grapes Galore! Wine Tasting in the Hill Country

If you live in Central Texas, you don’t have to venture far to taste some of the best American wines. The Daily Meal reported that the first vineyard in the U.S. was planted by Franciscan monks in Texas in the late 1600s. Now, there are more than 50 wineries in Texas Hill Country. Each one is unique. Find out the best way to taste the abundant wine varieties in this area.

Texas Wine Month Passport

Celebrate Texas Wine Month by enjoying the 19th annual self-guided wine trail. Explore what the participating Texas Hill Country wineries have to offer and enjoy full complimentary wine tastings (limit four per day) and special discounts. Tickets are limited and are available online only.

If you miss the fall event, you can take advantage of the opportunities offered by Texas Hill Country wineries at other times of year. You can also visit individual wineries any time they have availability.

Leave The Driving To Someone Else

If you don’t have a designated driver, you can take one of many shuttles and vans from place to place. The 290 Wine Shuttle lets you hop on and off for about $30 a day. The shuttle stops at each of the 13 wineries along the 290 East Wine Trail every 15 minutes, and you can start at any winery and stay for as long as you’d like.You can also drive different wineries on your own. Take into account that each pour is typically about one ounce, and a full wine glass is often four to six ounces. The sips that you take during a tasting can add up. Make sure that you’re drinking enough water and eating throughout the day.

Wineries usually offer refreshments for drivers who aren’t drinking. The prices of their tours may be adjusted if you won’t be sampling any alcohol during your visit.

Winery Etiquette

It takes about one hour to visit and tour each winery, especially if you enjoy a tasting at each one. Call ahead to find out if you need reservations. Many wineries offer special events, such as food pairings and live music. Planning ahead can help you take advantage of these offerings.

Don’t try to speed your way through a wine tasting. Take your time, and enjoy the views and flavors everywhere you go. Many wineries allow you to picnic on their grounds. Find out if you can bring pets, food, lawn chairs or coolers.

If you plan to purchase bottles of wine, you should bring a cooler and ice packs. Leaving wine in a hot car can compromise its taste and quality.

With a little planning, you can spend many weekends tasting wine in Texas Hill Country. If you can, you might want to try touring wineries during the week. You’ll avoid the crowds and enjoy leisure time in one of the most beautiful areas of the country.

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Kissing Tree is a distinctly Texan community built for those 55 and better. Set on the banks of the Hill Country, we are located between Austin and San Antonio in the charming town of San Marcos. Here’s to living life on your own terms.

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