Frrequently Asked Questions

One of the greatest benefits of travel is that there are so many types of wine and types of grapes. Locally produced wines always go best with locally produced foods.

March is Paul V Bonarrigo’s birthday month, and he loves steak and lamb. Our favorite wine with both is the Sagrantino that we make here at Messina Hof.  It is big, bold and rich – the perfect marriage of rich meats.

There are wines that are beautifully sweet and can be enjoyed as a dessert. A lovely glass of Papa Paulo Port, Angel Late Harvest Riesling, and Orange Muscat Mistella offer a light sweet finish to any meal.

Wines with desserts need to be complemented by the dessert and not overcome by the desserts. If the dessert is too sweet, it can make even your sweet wines taste dry. If the dessert is just a little less sweet than the wine or if it has good acidity that balances the sweet, then the wine can still shine.

Classic pairings of dark chocolate with port, cream based desserts with fruit go nicely with Angel and Mistella.

Our favorite desserts at the Vintage House are the Cherries Jubilee made with the Messina Hof Port Fudge Sauce and served with the Papa Paulo Port. The Bananas Foster goes perfectly with the Angel Late Harvest. The Cheesecake is great with the Orange Muscat Mistella.

We love Gewurztraminer for so many reasons. Gewurz means spice. As its name suggests, it is spicy. The spice is complemented perfectly by the traditional spices of Thanksgiving. Plus, it speaks to our German heritage.

Pinot Noir has soft to medium tannins and is light flavor weight enough to enjoy turkey and holiday spice.

Texas is so large and so geographically diverse; we can grow just about any grape somewhere in the state. Through experimentation we learn which grapes do best where. The heat we experienced this year gave us sweeter grapes and more concentrated juice. 

Always drink what you like but be open to trying new things. There are classic pairings which most people like. Also, if you are cooking, pick the wine you like and season the food to complement the wine.

Remove seeds and put in freezing cold bath before using. 

Wines like Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, and Gewurztraminer are great vegan wines. They make the flavors of vegetables and herbs pop. Summer dishes are light and flavorful.

Fruity light unoaked wines like, Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc Chenin Blanc, Riesling, Muscat Canelli, Gewurztraminer, blushes, and rose’ should be consumed within 2-3 years.  The joy of these wines is in the fruity freshness.  Though the wines continue to be drinkable later, the freshness will be gone.  Oaked whites live longer and can be enjoyed 5-7 years.  Light fruity reds with moderate tannin can be saved 5-8 years.  Big oaky reds usually can live up to 20 years.  Very few wines can live 100 years and still be palatable.  Port is one exception.  It can be stored 50-100 years.  The problem is that the natural cork will not last that long.

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