Saturday we spent the day on a chartered bus tour of four of the Texas Hill Country’s wineries, and it couldn’t have been a better day for it despite starting off at the ungodly hour of 3:30 am (not the bus tour itself ; I’ll explain that later). Crisp, cool weather, bright sun, and a deep blue sky. We visited Woodrose, Grape Creek, Becker, and Torre di Pietra, in that order. What a way to spend a Saturday, and the day even had a spec fic link at the end — you’ll see.
Woodrose has a beautiful facility with great people. Unfortunately, I didn’t like any of their wines. I was bummed. I really wanted to. However, the guy serving us told us a great story about one of their wines, a rosé that was extremely drinkable. He said that reporters from Food and Wine dubbed it “housewife crack” because of the number of women purchasing it by the case during the reporters’ visit. If you wanted something that was easy to drink and would give you a quick buzz, that would be the wine. I found myself polishing off the smidge I’d been given but I felt cheap even while I was drinking it. ; – )
Grape Creek was next. That was good. I bought a bottle of their syrah and port, both of which were some of the best I’ve ever tasted.
Then came Becker, which is the most touristy of the bunch but with decent wines and a wonderfully informative tour. I was starting to flag, and so I didn’t try all the wines. The group had a picnic there and it was so pretty. It was a perfect Hill Country fall day. They also run a lavender farm and I got a chunk of lavender spearmint soap that smells like heaven.
We finished up at Torre di Pietra, and by then, I couldn’t put anything more alcoholic into my body. It didn’t help that I was sleep-deprived and had given blood the day before, I’m sure. So I and another guy on the tour sort of slid into these chairs on the patio and looked up at the deep blue sky and kind of talked about how it was good we weren’t driving, and how all the wines added up, which ones we thought were the best, and wouldn’t a nap right about now be really nice?
Right about then I noticed a pair of familiar faces. John Gibbons and his wife Cat (Kat?) who are Armadillocon fixtures walked by with their wine, glasses, and snacks to enjoy the music of fiddle and guitar maestro Erik Hokkanen playing at the pavilion. We had a good chat and it was nice to see someone who I usually see only once a year at the best little convention in Texas. So that was the science fiction ending to my day.
The 3:30 am awakening began with a bang, as a drunk driver slammed into our truck, which was parked in front of the house. His Land Rover hit our truck so hard it knocked it across the street almost into our neighbor’s car parked in front of their house. The driver wasn’t injured, but we were out there for about an hour with the cops taking a statement and arresting the driver, and the tow truck etc. Oh yay! Insurance fun! But nobody was hurt and that was something.