Open That Bottle Night – Saturday, February 29, 2020

Everyone has that special bottle they have been holding on to, just waiting for the right time to open and share it with friends. That’s what Open That Bottle Night is all about!

On Saturday, Feb. 29, people will gather to enjoy bottles of wine with great stories.

See what the Texas Fine Wine folks will open this weekend!

Stan and Lisa Duchman, owners of Duchman Family Winery

We will open a 2011 Siro Pacenti Brunello to remember our visit to the winery and meeting the owners who were wonderful hosts and talented winemakers.

They focus on the terroir and allow the grapes to express themselves without manipulation attempting to please the masses and instead focus on making a well-balanced, elegant wine. 

Julie Kuhlken, co-founder of Pedernales Cellars

I will open the first vintage of our Kuhlken-Osterberg wines, a 2012 red blend of Touriga Nacional and Syrah. The Kuhlken-Osterberg series of wines was launched in 2012 in order to feature the Portuguese varieties in our vineyard, Kuhlken Vineyards. The growing season in 2012 was picture perfect in the Texas Hill Country, yielding excellent fruit.

I last tasted this wine at our annual release of the Kuhlken-Osterberg wine to our Collector’s Club in October. The tannins were still very robust with fruit notes of cranberry and blackberry jam, as well as hints of cedar, chocolate and smoke from the oak.  I look forward to tasting it again when I share it with our staff after closing this Saturday.     

Rebecca Conley, COO of Brennan Vineyards

I will open the 2012 Brennan Vineyards Chardonnay and a 2013 4.0 Cellars Mourvèdre. The Chardonnay was available in the tasting room when I first started at Brennan Vineyards six years ago and I was stunned after being told too many times that you couldn’t make good Chardonnay in Texas.

Well, guess what? Given the right vintage, winemaker, and fruit you can make stunning Chardonnay in Texas. It has been a few years since I last had this and I am so looking forward to how it has held up.

The 2013 4.0 Cellars Mourvèdre is one of the only vintages that has granted us a red Mourvèdre!  This wine in my memory was quite simply perfect — not too light and not too bold. This was also the first wine to be named Best of Texas at the Toast of Texas event featuring Texas Monthly’s Top Texas Wine picks.  

Ron Yates, owner of Spicewood Vineyards

When I think of special wines, I always select Arista Winery’s Pinot Noir. This weekend, I will open the 2012 Arista Bacigalupi Vineyards Pinot Noir to celebrate my long friendship with owner Mark McWilliams. We went to the University of Texas at Austin and then traveled to Spain together, where I found my love of wine. He makes world-class wines and I love drinking his Pinot.


Bill Fore, Hospitality Associate/Wine Educator, Bending Branch Winery

In the late nineties, my partner Joe and I were traveling to Italy and made an appointment to visit Castello di Monsanto, northwest of Castellina in Chianti.  Laura Bianchi, daughter of founder Fabrizio Bianchi, had recently assumed winemaker responsibilities.  We arrived just behind a busload of Japanese tourists, where a very embarrassed Laura explained that she’d double-booked her calendar.  She asked for our patience and promised to move the group along quickly.

Our subsequent afternoon with Laura was very personal, and she offered us a vintage Chianti Classico Riserva of our choice from their library.  We chose 1982, our anniversary year.  She retrieved and hand-labeled the shiner, and then autographed it to us.  Like many bottles uncorked on Open that Bottle Night it’s probably way past its prime, but the sweet memory is evergreen.