La Cruz De Comal Wines
La Cruz De Comal Wines
7405 FM 2722
Phone: (830) 899-2723
Contact: Lewis Dickson
La Cruz de Comal is collaboration between two long-standing friends, California winemaker Tony Coturri and Texas lawyer and wine enthusiast, Lewis Dickson. Nic Coturri, Tony's son, is instrumental to the harvest and crush, as is long-time Houston restaurateur, Bill Johnson, who also helps with sales.
We are located in the beautiful Texas Hill Country, often referred to as "The Provence of Texas". The small winery and case storage facility buried in the limestone hillside are near the town of Startzville, not far from Canyon Lake. From New Braunfels, the drive takes about 15 minutes.
La Cruz de Comal became a bonded winery in 2004. In 2001-2002, a few precious barrels of authentic Texas wine were made by Tony and Lewis at nearby Dry Comal Creek Vineyards & Winery. We again thank our good friends, Bonnie and Franklin Houser of Dry Comal Creek, for opening their doors to us.
This initial wine was well received by notable restaurants, wine critics and friends. In 2003, just one barrel of red wine (a blend we call Cohete Rojo, Spanish for "Red Rocket") was made primarily from estate grown grapes. Though not sold commercially, it also received high praise following a winemaker dinner at t'afia restaurant in Houston. With the proof in the bottle, we knew where our passions were capable of taking us.
La Cruz de Comal produces only authentic Texas wine from grapes conscientiously grown in the Texas Hill Country. We offer the real Texas "terroir" thing: Texas grapes, fermentations on natural yeasts, no additions of acid, sugar, grape concentrate, powdered tannins, artificial coloring agents, reverse osmosis or any other form of hocus-pocus. We have no interest in passing off grapes or wine foreign to Texas as being a product of Texas. Our passion embraces the age-old concept of "regionality" where food, wine and agriculture in general are concerned.
We fully expect our wines to have personality and individual character. In many respects, wines and their evolution are like people. The thing that makes people (and wine) interesting is what's different about them, not what's the same. We don't want our wines to be the same as other producers', anymore than we want our wines to be the same year after year. Each wine is different just as each vintage is different. Our goal is not to envision some "Parker 95" benchmark wine and then artificially concoct a beverage in its image. We offer our wines for what they are not, just as much as for what they are. Only through such an approach will authentic wine be produced-- wine that is true to its origin: the very soil, micro-climate and environs from which it came--its "terroir."
La Cruz de Comal wines reflect a respectful understanding of an ancient secret to fine winemaking: The secret is there is no secret. Winemaking is not "wine creation" any more than it can be "wine fixing." Good wine is not created and bad wine cannot be "fixed." Our view is that a winemaker is merely a custodian for yet another phase of the vineyard. He or she must have patience with and respect for Mother Nature. A potentially unique, fine wine is lost the moment a winemaker's intervention derails it from the track destined by Mother Nature.
Our wines are permitted to be what they want to be. We literally do everything by hand, from start to finish. We always hand pick the grapes. Very limited, small lot fermentations allow us to make wines that simply cannot be made any other way. We punch down the "caps" of fermenting red wine by hand, at least three or four times a day. All of our red wines are aged in French oak barrels, most of which are new or one year old. We bottle our wines by hand, always without filtration.
La Cruz de Comal wants to present the wine world with authentic Texas wine made with integrity; wines that are literally alive with the personality of the region. More and more these days, wines from around the world either taste pretty much the same or have the same "international style" earmarks of quality, no matter the origin, grape, vintage or cost. Many such wines are just as uninteresting as they are good and just as dead as they are technically correct with "textbook chemistry."
We spare no expense in doing what we do. Our primary goal, however, is not just to get our money back and then some. Rather, it is to make a valid statement to an open-minded audience of wine lovers everywhere: Our authentic Texas wine has a rightful place among the fine wines of the world, not by mimicking them with artificial "tricks of the trade", but by being true to what it is.
Certain tasters will always find it irresistible to compare a newcomer wine to something that it is not, being likely to grade it down simply because it is different. Our statement may never be heard or understood by such a taster. However, we hope to reach the palates of people that truly love wine on the most unpretentious, fundamental level-- those who can detect and enjoy the positive influence of regionality in a wine--those who neither expect nor want every wine to behave and taste the same.
Winemaker: Tony Coturri
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