Texas Heritage Vineyard Viognier, Wildseed Farms Vineyard, Texas Hill Country 2022

Deep gold color; tangerine, peach, lemon, honeysuckle, apricot, mango, flowers on the nose and palate.

Texas Heritage Vineyard Viognier, Wildseed Farms Vineyard, Texas Hill Country 2022

Dry; no noticeable tannins, good acidity. Likely spent no time in oak. Medium-plus body. Rich white wine with an oily quality that is a signature of viognier. The grape originated in the Northern Rhône and is both a blending grape and a varietal, as this effort almost certainly is. Viognier was almost abandoned in the Rhône because of susceptibility to disease, low yields, and labor-intensive care. Then it found new home in California and other parts of the world in recent decades, particularly in Texas. Texas is still discovering which grapes do well in its unique terroir, and viognier (and tempranillo) are among the rising starts in the Lone Star State. 11.7% ABV

The winery is the dream of Susan and Billy Johnson. As they neared retirement age, they followed their love of the outdoors and growing plants to start the winery in 2015. They opened the tasting room on Hwy 290, just outside of Fredericksburg in 2018. Susan was the original winemaker, but as the enterprise grew, the Johnsons brought in Tyler Buddemeyer to be the full-time winemaker to assist Susan. Both Susan and Tyler credit Texas Tech’s winemaking program in Fredericksburg for refining their skills.

Texas Heritage Vineyard family

Susan’s family came to Texas in the 1830s, so she is foundational Texan. She and Billy moved from Austin to Fredericksburg in 2002 and planted a three-acre lavender farm that they worked on weekends. When she retired from her full-time career in insurance in 2013, she enrolled in the Texas Tech Viticultural program in Fredericksburg and began exploring grape growing. They also sold the lavender farm to focus on vineyards.

Texas Heritage Vineyard tasting room

With a dream of creating a family-operated business to pass down through generations, they planted vines and continue to expand vine acreage. They built a state-of-the-art winery in 2017 and opened a tasting room. The enterprise now includes children and grandchildren working in management, merchandising, vineyard farming, and serving in the tasting room.

Wildseed Farms is working wildflower farm that also has 42 acres planted in wine vines. The farm is located east of Fredericksburg, on Hwy 290—the Texas wine road in the same way Hwy 29 is in Napa—in the heart of the Texas Hill Country AVA. Wildseed is a major player in the wildflower industry. They branched off to grapevines in 2015.

Texas Heritage Vineyard longhorns

Texas Heritage Vineyard Viognier, Wildseed Farms Vineyard, Texas Hill Country 2022 is a deep, delicious, robust, aromatic expression of Texas viognier. Big fruitiness and engaging aromatics. This is a wine that can hang with foods and moods where lighter, diaphanous whites fear to tread. Pair with shellfish, shrimp, lobster, scallops, crab; steamed clams with bacon and parsnips; rich and lean fish; chicken, duck, quail; lamb; pork; white meat in general with creamy sauces, especially those with fruit elements; spicy cuisine—Thai, Indian curry, Mexican dishes with chipotle; vegetarian fare. Cheese—creamy, buttery cheeses; brie, comté, Thomasville tomme, murcia al vino. $21-28

Texas Heritage Vineyard website

Texas Heritage Vineyard Susan Johnson and daughter
Texas Heritage Vineyard tasting area