Why Isn’t Lubbock Getting The Recognition It Deserves As Wine Country?
Lubbock, where cotton is king. But is it?
There are 4 million acres of cotton-producing land in the Lubbock area, so certainly, cotton is a massive industry here. But did you know that a whopping 90% of wine grapes grown in Texas come from the Lubbock area?
If cotton is king, then wine is queen.
In spite of how we might sometimes feel about Lubbock weather, our climate is actually ideal for many wine grape varieties, from the deliciously woody and tobacco flavor of a great Tempranillo to the fruity flowery flavor of a Viognier. The semi-arid climate is akin to that of Spain and southern France, where many of the varieties grown in Lubbock were originally cultivated.
In fact, one could argue that Texas as wine country was born right here in Lubbock:
Texas didn’t have much of a wine scene until 1966, when Texas Tech University professors Clinton ‘Doc’ McPherson and Robert Reed planted an experimental vineyard of 140 varieties to see which would work best in the High Plains.
They would go on to open a winery you may have heard of- Llano Estacado Winery, which now has a large selection of different varieties and blends that are palatable to any wine drinker- from the refined to the casual. It's so iconically Lubbock that I like to include a bottle as a gift to visiting out-of-towners, as it is a much superior souvenir to a magnet or keychain.
Lubbock is home to several other amazing, award-winning wineries like English Newsome, McPherson, Burklee Hill, Pheasant Ridge, and more. If you haven't taken advantage of a tasting, I highly encourage you to do so. As a Taurus, I believe that like is a rainbow of tastes to try, and we certainly have an amazing variety to explore.
Next time you think "wine", think of home. We deserve the connection- and the recognition.