Salt Lick Cellars Review
Address: 18300-C FM 1826 Driftwood,Texas 78619.
Phone Number: 512-894-3117
Tasting Hours: Mon-Sat 11:30-9:00, Sun 12:00-8:00
Region: Texas Hill Country AVA, Texas
Reviewer: Becky Parr
Review Date: 7/13/2014
Reviewer: Becky Parr
This place has a pretty slick setup.
Averyone living in or passing through Austin, Texas has heard of Salt Lick BBQ. Its probably the primary draw for the town of Driftwood, Texas, and has fed many a hungry traveler and local since its inception in 1967. (Try the ribs. Im just saying.)
Anyway, the Salt Lick BBQ doesn’t serve alcohol. But patrons can walk next door to Salt Lick Cellars and purchase wine or order beer by the bottle. Instant business! Smart! The same family that owns the BBQ restaurant owns the winery; they first planted vineyards in 2006 and presented their first bottle, a Tempranillo, to the public in 2008.
On this trip, my husband the designated driver went to the restaurant, and my best friend and I went to the winery. I think we all thought wed gotten the best end of the deal.
The Place:  Salt Lick has a massive parking lot that serves both the restaurant and the winery. Bear left for the wine, right for the meat! Its a dusty and rocky parking lot, so make sure you wear your scuffed boots as opposed to your shiny city shoes. This is Texas, you know! The tasting room itself is pretty small, but they have a really large picnic area outside. As you know if youre from around here, Texas only has two seasons hot and not hot so go during the not-hot weather and enjoy the patio area.
The People:  I’m sad to say that I didn’t get the name of the lady helping us but she was by herself behind the bar, and she did a great job of helping everyone. There were four Salt Lick label wines available (they were out of the Sangiovese), but she let us know that the Syrah and Mourvedre would soon be available.
She gave us the best story of the visit, however. Someone came in from the restaurant and ordered two beers of a particular variety Firemans #4, made by Real Ale Brewing in Blanco, Texas (good stuff if you havent tried it). The bartender yelled to the back, Two Single Firemen!!! My best friend, who is single, immediately raised her hand and said, Ill take two single firemen!
The Wines:  Unfortunately, I wasn’t terribly charged up about the wine. It was okay, but nothing terribly special, Im sorry to say. I had the BBQ White, which is a white blend, although the varietals werent shared. Id venture a guess that there was Chardonnay involved, because it was a bit on the buttery side. It was okay, but not fantastic. The BBQ Red is a blend of Dolcetto and Sangiovese; its light at first, with a bigger finish. The largest is the Hill Country Red, which is primarily Sangiovese, along with some Merlot and Cabernet. Its more tannic, too.
The winery also sells some of their neighbors wines, which makes sense, since they only have four or five wines under their own label. We tried a few from Fall Creek, for example. Ive been to Fall Creek, and enjoyed it quite a bit, so Id say they have good taste in partners. My friend purchased a bottle of Fall Creek Tempranillo to take home.
Salt Lick Cellars is a great resource to have if youre eating at the restaurant. Stop in before or after your meal and have a taste.