When I think of grape stomping the first thing that comes to mind is that scene in I love Lucy or the one from A Walk in the Clouds; you know which ones I’m talking about. Being a big wine lover, visiting wineries has become one of my favorite things to do and wine stomping was something I hadn’t. Spending a lovely weekend in Brenham, Texas, that was one of the things I got a chance to do. If you are not sure what grape stomping is, it’s grapes being crushed by barefoot participants repeatedly stomping on them to release their juices rather than using a wine press or other mechanized method. It’s also how fermentation begins. The Texas wine and grape industry is more than 300 years old; grapes have grown naturally along rivers and streams for thousands of years. With my time being limited in Brenham, I was only able to visit 2 of their wineries, Windy Winery and Pleasant Hill Winery.
Windy Winery was our first stop. As soon as we walked into the winery boutique, everyone welcomed us like family. There were people greeting us immediately with smiles and inviting us in. The weather was perfect to be on outside for a grape stomp but, if the Texas heat is too much for you to handle, being inside the winery is just as fun. If you are a wine lover, I highly suggest doing a grape stomp. At Windy Winery, you begin by picking grapes, putting some in a barrel, and step inside it to begin the stomping. After our stomping, we were treated to some chilled Sangria and relaxed while mingling with the other guests of the vineyard boutique. There are wines for everyone’s taste; from fruity to subtle. Windy Winery is owned by August and Linda Meitzen. The winery is new but has taken 24 years for its foundation to be built. Along with their love for wine, The Meitzens’ are also both accomplished ceramic artists and have their artwork throughout the winery’s website. To learn more about Windy Winery, click here.
Our next stop was at the Pleasant Hill Winery. When we arrived the parking-lot was full and people were in line to buy food under the canopy that had a few food booths under it. They even had a Pad Thai which I found interesting being that we were at a winery but, it was delicious. The vineyard itself was right behind the winery’s store. You get a nice view of it from the store’s balcony. We had the pleasure of walking taking a stroll through the vineyard; it was beautiful. The feeling of a warm summer breeze as you walked in and out of the rows of vines was a feeling you need to experience yourself. Pleasant Hill Winery has a great wine list of red and white wines from sweet to subtle. The winery’s store sells many cute wine theme gifts and has a quaint sitting area by the bar to sip and enjoy your wine. The winery has a wine club where you may pick up bottle of wine or 2 bottles can be shipped to you. With your wine club membership, you also get to enjoy 4 free wine tastings and so does your guest. To learn more about Pleasant Hill Winery, click here.
Our winery day in Brenham was filled with fun, great wine, beautiful scenery, and smiley faces. Both wineries offer a neat way to take a souvenir home after your grape stomp experience. After stomping on the grapes, you can step on a white shirt to capture your purple grapey feet. Grape stomping was not only enjoyable but also a great way to relieve stress. As you stomp and squish on the grapes, something about the sensation of the juices and grape pulp between your toes that makes you drift off into a happy place. Be sure when you visit Brenham, you make time to visit the wineries.