Grapes Prove to be a Growing Crop - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock


Grapes Prove to be a Growing Crop

When you think of West Texas, you think cotton, but here in Lamesa, cotton is sharing the spotlight with another crop -- grapes. Rows and rows of grapes sit on 107 acres of land at Delaney Vineyards in Lamesa.

"To me, it is the ideal spot. To me, anything north of Tahoka is too far north and anything south of Midland is too far south. Being too far south, means the grape vines don't dominate in the hill country and being too far north would mean that grape vines bud out like in March, and if you get a freeze in April, you lose your crop. We've only been froze up one time and it was in 1999 in Dawson County."

But this year, Vineyard Manager Ronnie Wilson says the crop will be a good one. The grapes are just weeks away from harvest.

"Your white grapes are brought in. We stem them and crush them immediately, and then they go straight to the tank for fermentation," says Wilson.

The harvesting process will start in two weeks and wrap up in September. This year, a staff of 25 people will harvest more than 200 tons of grapes. From there, the grapes are crushed and made into wine, then bottled right here in Lamesa.

"Our Blush Texas Rose is probably our most popular and we have a Sweet Texas Red. Those are sweet wines, and that's what basically everybody likes," says Mark Bush, cellar master.

Wine isn't the only delicacy you'll find here at Delaney Vineyards. Champagne is also on the menu.

"We're the only winery that I know of in the state of Texas that does champagne. Other wineries do Brut or sparkling wines, but none of the wineries in the state of Texas make champagne the French way like we do," says Wilson.

Delaney Vineyards is located at 113 Hillside in Lamesa. For more information, you can call (806) 872-3177.

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