Specialist of Texas Wine

The Specialist of Texas Wine (formerly Texas Wine Authority) is a first-of-its-kind program that offers a comprehensive series of classes featuring the unique wines and wine regions of Texas. Never before has there been a wine program with specific classes focused solely on Texas.

The program exposes students to unique landscapes of the major wine regions in Texas: Texas High Plains, Texas Hill Country, Texoma, Escondido Valley, and Davis Mountains AVAs, as well as non-AVA regions of East Texas and Gulf Coast.  This learning and tasting intensive program features important topics critical to the success of today’s wine professionals and savvy consumers that are looking for the best wines and wine values that Texas has to offer.

This three-part class will cover:

  • Details of each wine region, including location, geologic history, soils, climate and leading grape varieties grown in the region;
  • The evolution of Texas winemaking from its early Spanish and immigrant European period (1600-1800s) and early post-Prohibition (1940 to 1990) and modern period (1990-present), with a focus on winemaking techniques and grape varieties;
  • The links and contrasts between Texas wines and their old & new world counterparts through lectures and guided and blind tastings with benchmark wines.

The guided tastings will include over 24 Texas and benchmark wines. Tastings will include a range of grape varieties and blends originating from northern Europe (France & Germany), Mediterranean (Italy, S. France, Spain, Portugal) and hybrid wines from Texas and other American appellations. These tastings will help students understand the distinctions of wines from selected Texas regions and grape varieties and their attributes versus their counterparts in the American and global wine world.

The program concludes with an opportunity to test your knowledge of the wines, regions, and laws on an exam. The credential will be awarded to those that pass the rigorous exam at the end of the series with a score of 80% or higher.

Course Outline

Class 1 – Introduction to the industry, geology and soils, climate, and comparison to other wine regions

Class 2 – Texas AVA details and labeling of Texas wine

Class 3 – History and evolution of Texas wine industry and wine styles