Growing Real Texas Wine
At William Chris Vineyards, we focus on low impact 100% Texas grown wine. Owners and winemakers, Bill Blackmon and Chris Brundrett, sat down together at a Hill Country bar one night and discovered they shared a similar philosophy for winemaking.
They believe that the way to put Texas on the map as a respected wine region is to promote wines made exclusively from Texas grown fruit. Wines that make California and France recognizable come from the unique terroir and growing conditions of each region. They believe that for Texas wines to distinguish themselves, they also should represent the terroir and growing conditions of the Lone Star State.
Not only did they believe that the grapes needed to be Texan, they also believe that to grow the best fruit, much time among the vines is required. So walking multitudes of “footsteps in the vineyard,” Bill and Chris carefully inspect the fruit of every vintage.
History of William Chris Vineyards
Prior to their partnership, both Bill and Chris had numerous years of experience growing grapes in Texas. Both farmed grapes and made wine for established wineries.
In 2008, the pair decided to take their combined experience and passion to create authentic Texas wine and began William Chris Vineyards. They produced 6 barrels of their flagship wine and called it Enchanté.
In 2009, Bill and Chris bought the century old farming homestead in Hye, Texas. With the same passion that goes into creating our wine, the two set about refurbishing the old farmhouse and building the winery and production facility.
William Chris opened the doors of a small tasting room and produced a couple thousand cases of wine. Several wines from this vintage gathered acclaim including the 2010 Enchanté, 2010 Hunter, 2010 Cabernet Franc, and the 2010 Blanc du Bois.
In 2011, Bill and Chris broke ground on a new and larger production facility enabling them to double their capacity. With the purchase of additional storage tanks and barrels, the winery produced 4,500 cases of wine in 2011.
The epic drought of 2011 produced a small-berried harvest that created great concentration and quality scarcely matched by any previous vintage in Texas.
We farm about multiple vineyards all over the state of Texas including - Malbec, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot, Tannat, Mourvèdre and Trebbiano Toscano. We continue to grow each year thanks to the support of Texas wine lovers.
In 2017, William Chris Vineyards partnered with 100 percent Texas grown wineries and vineyards to form Texas Wine Growers. The group is a part of the global Wine Origins initiative to protect place names and authenticity in wine labeling, joining forces with reputable wine regions including - Napa Valley Vintnter's Association, Chianti Classico, Willamette Valley, Champagne, Bordeaux, Rioja, and McLaren Vale.