Say howdy to Texas wines! Fredericksburg’s newest wine-tasting property, 4.0 Cellars, is a creative collaboration between three of Texas’ award-winning wineries: Brennan Vineyards of Comanche, Lost Oak Winery (formerly Lone Oak) of Burleson and McPherson Cellars of Lubbock. It grew out of each wineries’ desire to have a presence in the “Wine Mecca of Texas” and their commitment to producing quality Texas wines. The name 4.0 is a play on a perfect Grade Point Average. It embodies the owners’ and employees’ dedication to being at the top of their class and is incorporated in clever ways, such as their Honor Society and Dean’s List wine club membership levels.
Fusing Texas Hill Country with contemporary industrial, the property strikes a picturesque balance between modern and country. The spacious, 5000 square-foot main tasting room is open and airy with beautiful floor-to-ceiling windows that bring the outside in. Exposed vents and straight lines lend a modern feel while plenty of warm woods and colors keep the stainless steel from feeling aesthetic and give the space a homey touch. Beautiful paintings from local hill country artists such as Jill Holland adorn the walls. Venture outdoors and you’ll find a big covered patio with oversized rocking chairs and a simple but gorgeous cedar beam pavilion along with an outdoor wine bar, perfect for spending lazy summer Texas evenings.
The mission of 4.0 Cellars is to showcase Texas wines, and they deliver. The three wineries grow grapes from across Texas – north, central, and high plains – and provide a surprisingly wide variety of tastes and experiences across whites, reds, and blushes.
Comanche Rose, from Brennan Vineyards, is a lively sweet blush with complex fruity tones and just the right amount of acidity. The wine was paired with spicy stuffed jalapeños, and it not only stood its ground, but countered the heat very nicely.
While I don’t typically care too much for dry whites, McPherson Cellars offers a Roussanne that I really enjoyed. Clean and crisp, the servers refer to it as “lemon drop” wine, and it does deliver delightful citrus notes without being overly fruity. It deliciously complimented some borracho beans.
Tempranillo is a black grape native to Spain and loves warm weather, of which we have plenty here in Texas! And Lost Oak highlights it well with their Red Roan, a Tempranillo/Cabernet blend. In this wine, the bold smokiness typical of many Texas reds is unmistakable, but it is nicely balanced by the cherry fruitfulness of the Cab. With such big flavors and a smooth finish, this was one of my favorites.
Ten dollars buys you a sample of 6 wines (sometimes a bonus seventh is offered) and a complimentary wine glass. With its personable, helpful staff, and over thirty different wines (they rotate fifteen at a time through on their Tasting Menu), 4.0 Cellars is a friendly, unpretentious place to introduce yourself to the delightful warm varietals Texas winemakers have to offer.
Value: A (In addition to the $10 tasting, most glasses run $5-7 , and full bottles start at $12.)
Atmosphere: A+ (A laid-back, inviting place to enjoy your time in Fredericksburg. The designers built the tasting room with conversation in mind. No yelling over crowd noise here!)
Service: A (Knowledgeable servers will chat you up as much or as little as you’d like.)
Taste: A- (Big Texas reds aren’t for everyone, but every wine lover should be able to find many tastes here that they enjoy!)