Fabulous HANNA Wine Luncheon Hosted by Grove House in Fredericksburg Texas
Anticipation of a fabulous HANNA Wine luncheon set amoungst magnificent centuries old Texas Oaks in Fredericksburg Texas was high. Arriving at the property, now known as Grove House, you are immediately greeted by a charming, elegantly rustic farmhouse surrounded by a wrap around side porch and Texas native wild flowers. Massive oak trees abound on this 12 acre property enveloping the 1880’s Basse block house in pure Texas serenity. The Grove House has been lovingly restored by its current owner, Leslie Washburne, as a venue to host intimate events like the wine luncheon we convened for today.
The warm charm of the property was lazily intoxicating and receiving a cool glass of HANNA Rosé Sonoma County 2014 upon arrival continued to lend ones thoughts to a dreamy afternoon with new friends in expectation of good food and wine yet to come.
Our appetites were soon peaked by the passed Hors d’oeuvres of Gravlax, a spice cured sliced salmon served atop a rosti or potato pancake. The salmon was lightly drizzled with horseradish cream, topped with pickled onions and fresh dill. A perfect accompaniment to this light, slightly fruity Rosé with its hints of watermelon and raspberries. Aww summer!
Food for the luncheon today was sourced from the surrounding ranches and farms with Otto’s German Bistro Chef Adam Yoho highlighting the abundant resources of the Texas Hill Country. Wine Director/Owner of Otto’s, John Washburne, selected the pairings for the menu.
So now it was time to sit at the elegant table under the trees and begin our journey through the HANNA Winery as told by Christine Hanna, the owner and President of HANNA Winery and through tasting the excellent selection of wines she brought with her today.
Our first course for this fabulous Hanna Wine luncheon started with the Rocket Salad, probably getting its name from its resemblance to its namesake. Cuts of watermelon shaped, well, sort of like rockets, shared the plate with walnuts and honey chevre atop a bed of arugula and dressed with lemon vinaigrette. The vinaigrette added a bit of sharpness to contrast the sweetness of the fresh watermelon and cheese. This course was paired with HANNA Sauvignon Blanc Russian River Valley 2014. This light, fruity wine with hints of peach, Meyer Lemon and ginger was perfect for the salad. Both the salad and the wine enhanced the flavors of the other.
Next course was the Trout Almondine cooked in brown butter with capers and accompanied by haricot vert. This trout was exquisite and begged to be slowly savored with the capers adding their wonderful tangy brininess to the dish. And the beans were a summertime delight fresh from the garden. John paired the fish with the HANNA 2013 Chardonnay from the Russian River Valley. This crisp wine with hints of tropical fruits, vanilla and spice erupted in a wonderful juiciness leaving you to want another taste.
The third course for this fabulous Hanna Wine luncheon had us take a step to the meaty side of things. The beef fillet served medium-rare with caramelized shallots cooked in herb butter, was tender, juicy and flavorful. It was an excellent cut and cooked to perfection in my opinion. Served alongside pomme frites which were hand cut and fried to a golden crispness, who could ask for more. What else could accompany this but the HANNA 2013 Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon. This vibrant red is full of flavors of dark summer berries and cocoa and held up well to the steak.
Of course we were full now, but we still wanted more and were a bit childlike when waiting for dessert. The Cambozola Cheesecake did not disappoint us either. In fact, I know of no one who left any of the cake on their plate. Topped with blackberry coulis, balsamic gastrique (caramelized sugar deglazed with vinegar) and candied pecans this cake was a gastronomic delight. And to pair with it was the HANNA 2014 Bismark Zinfandel from the Sonoma Valley. This wine was rich and full with flavors of dried cherries and caramel and 100% Zinfandel. The deep fruity sweetness complimented the creamy lusciousness of the cake.
A fabulous Hanna Wine Luncheon was brought together for a perfectly crafted day thanks to HANNA’s superb wines, Otto’s fresh and wonderfully prepared dishes, and the beauty that is Grove House!
**Full Disclosure: I was invited to attend the wine dinner in exchange for my review. All opinions in this post are totally mine.
HANNA Winery thrives on Sonoma’s world-class diversity of climate, topography and geology. For a small, quality-focused family winery, it boasts a stunning collection of long-held vineyards – from the cool Russian River Valley to the sunny Alexander Valley to the rugged Moon Mountain appellation high in the Mayacamas.
Side note: Be sure to check out Christine Hanna’s lovely cookbook, “The Winemaker Cooks”. Chris embodies the Sonoma Lifestyle, as she is a gourmet cook, cookbook author, wine enthusiast, gardener and entertainer.
LOCATION: 9280 Highway 128, Healdsburg, CA 95448
The Grove House is a venue that offers open outdoor spaces, a flagstone terrace, a wraparound side porch, and a modestly decorated house with five rooms that can be used for any type of small event. They have held intimate weddings, cooking classes, pop-up dinners and other smaller gatherings at the Grove House.
Side note: Leslie Washburne also owns the Hoffman Haus, a collection of cottages and farmhouses, combined into a luxury bed-and-breakfast just a block from Main Street in Fredeicksburg.
608 East Creek Street, Fredericksburg TX USA 78624
Otto’s German Bistro
Otto’s German Bistro opened in July 2013, introducing farm-to-table German cuisine to the Texas Hill Country. They are dedicated to local, organic produce as well as high quality products from further afield. Their beverage program reflects their interest in natural and biodynamic wines, artisan cocktails and craft beers.
LOCATION: 316 East Austin Street, Fredericksburg, TX 78624
4:00 P.M. to 11:00 P.M.
11:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M.