Wineries are popping up in the most unexpected places these days. I’ve lived in the Dallas area a long time, and had no idea there was a winery within thirty minutes of downtown Dallas – Landon Wineries located in historic McKinney, Texas.
To be honest, it had been years since I’d tried a Texas wine. My overall impression was that they were too sweet, or too acidic, not balanced. I just assumed all Texas wines were like that. At Landon I got a fresh perspective on Texas wine. And yes, it’s safe for you to assume it is for the better.
The past two years I’ve been lucky to visit and travel to some of the world’s premier wine regions (Tuscany, Napa Valley, Santa Barbara County, and the Hudson Valley. When I saw Landon on the square in McKinney I was very curious to see how their wines compared. I walked in with open mind and bellied up to the bar.
Landon Winery has been open since 2004, but owner Bob Landon began experimenting with wine making as early as 1989. His goal – to make award winning wines accessible to everyone. Looks like he’s found a winning formula!
There were several interesting selections on the menu, including two sparkling wines and some reserve wines made with grapes sourced from Landon’s California vineyards. All wines were available for the tasting.
The best deal is the tasting of five wines for five dollars. If you’ve never been to Landon, this is a great way to familiarize yourself. Count me in.
The tasting room was large; an old wooden bar dominated the room. The walls were lined in bottles, tall individual tables were scattered around the room, and there was a selection of wine related gifts for sale. On a Thursday night at about 7:00 pm, there were several tables occupied and a few people stopping in to pick up phone orders. Business appears to be poppin’ at Landon.
My tasting consisted of two whites, a sparkling red, a Pinot Noir, and the Cabernet Reserve made with grapes sourced from both Texas and California.
The Pinot Noir was very nice – my impression was of slightly less tannins than the California Pinots I’ve enjoyed, and not as dry. It was a silver medal winner at the Lone Star International Wine competition. I paired with a dark chocolate truffle, which was also on the menu there.
My favorite was the Vintessa Cabernet Sauvignon. Not a big bold Cabernet, but very easy to drink with soft berry and floral notes. This would be great with a traditional cheese pairing.
A surprise was the sparkling red which got my vote. First of all, I like sparkling wines. This one was very light, slightly dry and with just a touch of fruit. On the tasting menu it was called a sparkling Muscato. It would make a nice happy hour wine, with a variety of appetizers…or mix it into a Sangria.
The white wines didn’t grab me, but wine tasting is very subjective. If you do go to Landon I encourage you to try them for yourself.
Landon Winery has won several awards and continues to make news in the wine world. The vineyards are located in Greenville, Texas where you can do a barrel tasting every Saturday at 2:00 pm. The tasting room in McKinney is open seven days a week until 9:00 pm, though opening hours vary. Do check the website for events and details on their award-winning wines.
101 N. Kentucky St.
Landon Winery & Bistro 2508 Lee Street, Greenville, Texas 75401