Red wines from Texas were among those from around the world awarded Double Gold medals at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo™ 2021 Rodeo Uncorked! International Wine Competition held Nov. 13-15 at NRG Center in Houston.
A Double Gold medal is awarded to the entries that received a Gold medal rating by all five members of the judging panel. The Rodeo Uncorked! Handbook describes a Gold medal as “Of outstanding quality, superior to most. Reflects the best flavor, balance, style and winemaking for that class and price point.” A Double Gold is the most prestigious award a wine can receive. These Texas red wines were recognized as superior by their peers in the three-day competition.
Augusta Vin Winery’s Giovanna Rosso, Texas High Plains, NV, won a Double Gold medal, and Class Champion and Texas Class Champion awards for Red Italian Varietals and Blends, $25-$50. Giovanna Rosso is a special proprietary Tuscan blend using three Italian grape varieties grown 100% in Texas: Sangiovese, Aglianico and Montepulciano. Augusta Vin, opened in 2019, is a premiere estate winery located near Fredericksburg, Texas. The winery has 60 acres of vineyards and grows 10 different grape varieties from around the world, including Malbec, Tannat, Tempranillo, Marsanne, Roussanne and the Italian grapes used in the Giovanna Rosso blend. These wines are growing in popularity in Texas, as more and more winemakers experiment with new varieties. For more information, visit augustavin.com.
Becker Vineyards, a long-time winner at Rodeo Uncorked!, took home a Double Gold medal for its Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, Canada Family Vineyard, Texas High Plains, 2017 and other honors such as Class Champion and Texas Class Champion for Cabernet Sauvignon, $40-$50. Located in Fredericksburg, Becker was founded by Dr. Richard Becker and his wife, Bunny, in 1992. The 10,000-square foot facility sits along Highway 290 Wine Road, and features 56 acres of estate fruit, plus a three-acre lavender field. Nicole Bendele, Becker Public Relations and Tasting Room Coordinator said, “We are excited hearing about the Double Gold our Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Canada Family 2017 won! Along with growing grapes, we have terrific growers we purchase grapes from, one being Brenda Canada (of the Canada Family Vineyards). And we have a wonderful team of people who work hard to make fabulous wine to pour for our guests to enjoy.” For more information, visit beckervineyards.com.
Hidden Hangar Cabernet Franc, Texoma, 2018, received a Double Gold medal and Class Champion and Texas Class Champion awards for Cabernet Franc, $35+. Hidden Hangar Vineyards and Winery is located just outside of Dennison, Texas, and is part of the Texoma American Viticultural Area, one of eight AVAs that exist in Texas. Hidden Hanger sits on a historic site that was once a municipal airport, where “barnstorming” pilots stopped for fuel while traveling between Oklahoma City and Dallas. Unfortunately, the hangar was destroyed in a late-night fire in the 1960s, but a concrete slab still partially exists today. The winery offers estate-grown Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Petite Verdot, Riesling and Syrah. For more information, visit hiddenhangar.com.
Ron Yates Winery Tempranillo, Friesen Vineyards, Texas High Plains, 2017, took honors as the Top Texas Wine in the 2021 competition. It also earned a Double Gold Medal and was named Class Champion and Texas Class Champion for New World Tempranillo and Blends, $32 – $60. The award-winning Tempranillo is an expression of Yates’ passion for the grape, which he discovered during a semester abroad in Spain during his college years at The University of Texas at Austin. Yates entered the wine business in Texas in 2007 with the purchase of Spicewood Vineyards in the Texas Hill Country. In 2016, he opened Ron Yates Winery on 15.8 acres in Hye, Texas. For more information, visit spicewoodvineyards.com.
Ron Yates Winery sister winery in Spicewood also took home a Double Gold Medal for its Syrah, Texas Hill Country, 2017, and awards for Class Champion and Texas Class Champion for Syrah or Shiraz, $30+. Spicewood is a 32-acre vineyard near Spicewood, Texas, northwest of Austin, Texas. The winery was founded as one of the first Hill Country wineries in 1992 by Ed and Madeleine Manigold, who focused on producing wines from estate-grown fruit. Current owner Ron Yates is continuing that legacy and has earned a long list of medals as a testament to the quality of his wines. For more information, visit spicewoodvineyards.com.