Huston Vineyards Review
Address: 16473 Chicken Dinner Rd. Caldwell,Idaho 83607.
Phone Number: 208-455-7975
Tasting Hours: Mar-Nov: Fri-Sat 12:00-5:00
Region: Snake River Valley AVA, Idaho
Review Date: 10/20/2013
Fall is a time of year that makes me proud to be an Idahoan. Sunny, warm days draped in gorgeous shades of gold and red, blue skies, and temperatures in the high 60s. I just wasnt feeling like an indoor afternoon watching football so off we went to discover one of the newer wineries in Idaho, Huston Vineyards.
I chose Huston Vineyards because it was, after all, Sunday and what better tasting room to visit than the one on Chicken Dinner Road. Apparently someone who lived on this road in the distant past was well known for making a great Sunday chicken dinner.
Sure enough, we picked a perfect day for a drive to Huston. While the colors are slightly fading and wont last long, today they are at a peak that made the twenty minute drive immensely enjoyable. Had we decided to go a week later I could have been California dreaming.
The Place:  The Huston Vineyards tasting room sits in the middle of Canyon County farm ground in Idaho’s Snake River Valley American Viticultural Area (AVA). Think field corn, hops, sugar beets, beans and wheat. The tasting room itself looks like an old metal farm shed, which I am sure it probably was at one time.
The outside of the tasting room was decorated with fall flowers and pumpkins. There is also a nice outdoor seating area in front of the tasting room that would be perfect for a gathering of friends on warm fall afternoons.
The first glimpse inside takes a minute after submerging from the bright autumn sun. It is dark and subdued, especially after being in bright sunlight. Once my eyes adjusted to the new lighting, I was pleasantly surprised. The tasting room is a really quaint “shabby chic” kind of room with a few touches of elegance. While the tasting room is small, it is well laid out and has a small gift area. I love the wine glasses they were selling that were made out of old Huston Vineyard wine bottles. Cleaver idea unless you have paper labels.
The tasting bar was crowded for a Sunday afternoon; I was glad we didnt come on Saturday. Once we had checked out the gift area, our hostess Stacy made sure we had a space at the bar to begin tasting.
The Wine:  Our fist sample was a 2012 Chicken Dinner White. This off-dry wine, a blend of Riesling, Muscat Blanc & Viognier, has a pleasant pale straw color with aromas of tropical fruits. The flavors of green apple, apricot and honeysuckle predominate. It was my favorite white of the day.
Next we tried the 2012 Huston Vineyards Private Reserve Chardonnay. This wine is aged in French and New American Oak. It is gold in color and displays aromas of citrus fruits with a strong honey flavor.
The third tasting was my favorite of the day. The 2012 Chicken Dinner Red, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah, is a light bodied with a spicy finish. While I tend not to care for a lighter bodied wine, this one was balanced with a nice black cherry flavor and a beautiful ruby red color.
The 2011 Huston Vineyard Merlot has a deep ruby red color and aromas of smoky bacon and cherry as well as a hint of cedar and vanilla. This Merlot is well structured and while finishing smooth, it does have a slight metallic or bitter taste at the end which is why I chose the 2012 Chicken Dinner Red as my favorite. This would be my second choice.
My last tasting was the 2011 Huston Vineyards Private Reserve Red. This wine was bottle in July of this year and aged for 24 months. Only 100 cases of this wine were produced, and as of the day of my tasting, there were only 22 cases still available. The Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah blend possesses a nice floral aroma with heavy cherry flavor with a smooth peppery finish.
Insider Tips:  The tasting room is small so if you are in a hurry, plan ahead to avoid a possible wait to taste.