The most important -- the Texas Hill Country Wine & Food Festival -- attracts national attention. But there are half dozen others this spring.
This is not surprising, given wine's increasing popularity. There are 155 wineries in the state, including some three dozen in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
“It has been an amazing experience,” says Caris Turpin at Lightcatcher Winery in Fort Worth. “We never thought we would have done so well so quickly. We had no idea we’d get this kind of response.”
Hence, seven big-deal wine festivals in the state through the end of the spring:
• The 28th annual San Antonio Wine Festival, Feb. 15-17. It includes a wine competition that attracts national brands.
• Fifth annual Rodeo Uncorked, Houston, Feb. 18 and March 8. Also features a wine competition.
• Fifth annual Savor Dallas, March 7-8. This mixes wine education with a couple of high-profile, high-society events.
• Hill Country, in and around Austin, April 10-13. This isn't quite Aspen's profile, but it's close. The event has become so big, in fact, that it has spawned an offspring -- the Austin Wine Festival.
• Fourth annual Grand Wine and Food Affair, Sugar Land, April 23-27. More than 100 wineries are expected to participate.