On the road again with the vision but, not the taste of St. Rose fading away. A most amazing tour of the back roads of East Texas now ensued with us going the most direct, shortest, longest roundabout way to our next stop, Los Pinos Ranch Vineyard and Winery. Another trip down a shaded and winding road until we found Los Pinos. I had to get out at the gate just for the view of the vines. Really beautiful. And the buildings in the background? Really something to see. The first thing I thought was, ‘Now THIS is what a vineyard is supposed to look like.’
We passed through the manicured grounds, passed the pavillion and the statues of elephants (no joke) and onto the lengthy veranda of the building. Once we went inside I got my view of a very nice restaraunt setting with a short wine bar and plenty of field stone/wood decor. Our group got steered away from the wine bar and to a table and the waitress server popped over to take our order for a wine taste.
I have to tell you in all honesty that I can not pass any kind of judgement on the bouquet or flavor of any of the Los Pinos wines. The rest of the party with the exception of Elizabeth (a serious light weight in the drinking department) gave several of the wines relatively high marks. My taste buds however, had suffered such a serious blow at the hands of the high powered Muscadine that I even thought the water tasted funny. Sad but true.
I did take the time to wander through the facility and ‘discovered’ the cask room that, I found out later, also served as a separate dining and meeting area. Strange as it may sound my favorite part of the entire tasting experience at Los Pinos was the mens room decor. I know, I know. The WHAT? You have to see it to believe. It was the coolest mens room I have ever been in. Everything was field stone and copper basins. Really quite impressive.
That was about it for me at Los Pinos. I have to agree with Tom Joe that it was more a restaraunt that grew grapes and served wine than a real tasting experience. The food was good, we ate lunch and then came back for dinner, although that was more due to a lack of other places to go to than anything else. We left the main building and did a self tour of the grounds where I made a brand new friend who shared a bit of the local dirt with me.
So then, Los Pinos Ranch Vineyard and Winery. It was a nice place. Beautiful inside and out with good food. If you are in the area I would recommend that you pop in and give it a try. Have a glass of the Merlot (chilled) and do try the pizza. I myself have to go back before I can pass on anything regarding the wines. Keep an eye peeled for my friend so you can get the good dirt on Los Pinos. Blog me. Tweet (or as I say, twit) me and let me know what you think.
Hope to see you on the trail!!