Duchman Family Winery

In: Drinking

25 Aug 2012

(map) We are lucky to have quite a few award-winning wineries nearby, the one in this case near Driftwood, home of the Salt Lick. With their tasting rooms, beautiful scenery and gift shops, they make fun trips. This started out as Mandola’s Winery, but as of July, the Duchman (pronounced “Dukeman”) family, partners from the beginning, run it themselves. They don’t plan to change anything, especially winemaker Dave, who’s been there from the very first vintage.

Tastings are $10 for your choice of six wines, and are popular on weekends. Knowledgeable pourers discuss tasting notes and offer their impressions of the wines. Duchman mostly grows Italian grapes in the 20-acre vineyard because they like our Texas heat: Varietals like vermentino, sangiovese, dolcetto and montepulciano. You can buy a glass or bottle of wine and enjoy it outside in the garden, where Italian music is playing.

Right now it’s harvest time for local wineries. These just-picked sangiovese grapes are in crates, waiting to be crushed. Below, in the distance, you can see a crate of grapes being emptied into a crusher. The stems are sent one way, and the fresh juice is piped up into a tank. With a little pixie dust (yeast), the wine will ferment until it’s filtered and sealed into barrels. Winemakers’ kids learn the trade early!

Every aspect of the winery is reminiscent of the Italian countryside.

Duchman Family Winery website

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