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May 2017 News from Hensley Family Vineyards

Carol Hensley - Saturday, May 20, 2017

Hello Summer!

We can think of a million reasons to love Napa Valley, but its family-friendly environment is at the top of our list. We tend to morph from one end of the valley to the other without too much thought as to how our plan will come together. A tractor here ... a limo there. A hot air balloon circling in the sky ... a slew of cyclists soaring down the trail. Napa Valley is an amazing collection of contrasts, and we are continually charmed by its rugged beauty and colorful characters. As you firm up your summer plans, we hope you'll give some thought to including Napa on your itinerary. It's the perfect place to stay busy ... or not.

Pop, clink, cheers ...

Mike & Carol Hensley

Above, a beautiful morning at Sunrise Horse Rescue in Calistoga, March 2017.   

 

February 2017 Update from Hensley Family Vineyards

Carol Hensley - Sunday, February 12, 2017
                                      

 

HENSLEY FAMILY VINEYARDS :: FEBRUARY 2017 :: WINE NEWS & UPDATES

 
 

 

Waiting for Spring ...

It's that inbetween weather right now. Is this a cold or the flu? Is it time to plant flowers or hold off until the next freeze passes? Should we wash the car or wait for another round of 'ick' weather to dust it with grime? Some things stand at the mercy of time, but others, like the dinner party we attended last night that kicked off with a blind tasting of 5 stellar Cabernet Sauvignon wines from Napa, are decidedly delightful any time of the year. Yes, we are waiting for spring, but we're definitely making the most of the moment.

Pop, clink, cheers ...

Mike & Carol Hensley

At right, on top of the world at Sterling Vineyards, Napa, March 2016.   

 

     

January 2017 Update from Hensley Family Vineyards

Carol Hensley - Sunday, January 15, 2017

                                      

 

HENSLEY FAMILY VINEYARDS :: JANUARY 2017 :: WINE NEWS & UPDATES

 
 
 

Houston is having a moment, and so should we ...

The Super Bowl is just around the corner, and Houston stands ready to welcome the thousands who will embark on our city's fabulous hotels, restaurants and entertainment venues. As January quickly slips away (doesn't it always?), it seems like 2016 was largely dedicated to getting ready for the big stage. Now it's time to pause, swirl your favorite wine at leisure and celebrate all the individual efforts that have brought us to this moment. Houston, you've never looked so good!

Pop, clink, cheers ...

Mike & Carol Hensley

At right, a pre-fireworks moment at dusk, Silverado Resort, Napa, July 2016.   

 

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January 2015 News from Hensley Family Vineyards

Carol Hensley - Thursday, March 19, 2015
In this issue: Cheers to the New Year; tailgates; Texas scholars, TUTS and more!
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HENSLEY FAMILY VINEYARDS :: JANUARY 2015 :: WINE NEWS & UPDATES

 
 
 

Raise a glass and run for cover: It's a cold, bold Happy New Year 2015!

We've long admired our friends George and Penny Allen for their taste and tenacity as Texans tailgaters. Come rain or shine, their tailgate is dedicated, decorated and delicious. So, when George and Penny said we could tag along for the Texans vs Jaguars game on December 28, we weren't about to let freezing, slushy rain and whipping winds get in our way. Armed with a few bottles of wine, we joined the Allens and their posse for steaks, potato soup, friendship and fun. Of course, the Texans victory gave us even more to cheer about as we puddle-jumped our way back to the tent. Cheers to George and Penny for hosting and toasting a memorable day in Texans history! A few evenings later, we joined the fun at the always boisterous Brasserie 19 to ring in the new year. Holiday revelry was at a maximum but we had the perfect perch for people and fashion watching. We hope your new year is off to a great start. Thank you for your patronage of Hensley Family Vineyards, and let us know how we can help restock your cellar for all the good times to come.

Pop! Clink! Cheers ...

Mike & Carol Hensley
    

 

George Allen and Mike Hensley at the Texans tailgate.


New Year's Eve at Brasserie 19.

       
 

Customer Profile: Meet Sheri Weathersbee

Sheri Weathersbee has been a great friend to Hensley Family Vineyards. Whether out on the town or just hanging out in the backyard with friends, she always makes a place at the table for our wine. Here's a look into her world:

Sheri, we tend to think of you as our Dallas ambassador for Hensley Family Vineyards. What do you like about living in Big D?
Dallas is a great place for just about anything you want to do, from five star dining/ entertainment/ accommodations to laid-back burger joints and dive bars with amazing music from musicians that have stories of days gone by but sounds that will take you places that will pleasantly surprise you. You can be "big city" or country living without going too far in either direction. Our metroplex is made of many smaller cities that have great character and unique aspects of their own and are beginning to include good places to play, wine and dine, shop or just hang out. Short of an ocean or mountain, we have just about everything one could need to stay busy and have fun.

You’ve introduced our wine to a lot of folks -- thank you. What kind of feedback are you getting?
My friends love the wine, and I am asked where can I get this here in Dallas. The white wine lovers would love a version of their own to drink. The Hensley Family Vineyard Inaugural wine has been a hit with my friends. I am also proud to say that the Hensleys have been very generous to donate to a variety of charitable causes in the Dallas area with wine gifts, and the feedback has been "please can you get us more!!"

We know you also like to cook. Describe a favorite meal and how you pull it all together.
My favorite meals are simple food, hearty, depend on the weather, often include the grill, meat and potatoes of some sort and as many others as I can share the food with, either at the time or in carry out containers. Cooking is a sign of love, in my opinion, and I love to share it. Often, I find spur-of-the- moment gatherings the most fun. The gift of just getting everybody together on a surprise moment in this busy world is awesome.

 

Sheri Weathersbee

You are a public educator in a challenging environment. Is there a “typical” day?
I don't experience too many typical days, as I am a Behavior Specialist in Special Education in a large district outside of Dallas. When you deal with students who have behavior challenges that are caused by emotional disturbances/mental illness, rarely is there a typical day. I love what I do, and working with my kids and their special needs rocks my world in a good way.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not on a schedule?
I love being outside and hanging with my two dogs Oscar and Pickle. I also am blessed with many friends that make me a rich person and time spent fellowshiping with others is a gift to me.

Thanks, cheers, and have a wonderful 2015!


       
 

UT's Forty Acres Society teams up with Hensley wine to toast deserving scholars 

We were thrilled to open our doors on a beautiful October evening and help UT's Forty Acres Society host a membership party with a unique wine twist. UT Professor Eric Anslyn shared his remarkable findings on Mimicking the Smell and Taste of Wine while guests sipped on our own 2010 Hensley Cabernet Sauvignon. The Forty Acres Scholars Program is the premier full-ride, merit based scholarship program at the University of Texas.

 

Lauren Schumann of Texas Exes with Society members Stuart and Farrell Saunders.

       
 

ExxonMobil's employee awards dinner showcases thoughtful wine pairings

Meeting Coordinator Rita Isgar retired from ExxonMobil after 33 years of service this year, but we were fortunate to work with her on a spectactular wine dinner for employees at the beautiful Hotel Granduca. Our Hensley Cabernet Sauvignon was one of a handful of wines paired thoughtfully with dinner courses throughout the evening. Mike guided guests through tasting notes for each wine, and many people in attendance noted that Napa Valley is high on their list of places to visit in the near future. We were only too happy to offer our insight on great wineries and winemakers to visit. 

 

From left, Rita Isgar of ExxonMobil, Carol and Mike Hensley, and The Hotel Granduca's Jeremie Heng, 



       
 

REEF Restaurant gives TUTS a grand stage as chefs, wineries and patrons applaud

It was high drama in H-Town when REEF Restaurant's Bill Floyd and Bryan Caswell unveiled an amazing line-up of haute chefs and wineries for the annual Theatre Under the Stars Vine & Dine Dinner on November 16. TUTS patrons packed the restaurant and were treated to high-energy performance previews while dining on signature dishes paired with wines from vintners who are also Houstonians. This unique concept is a social season favorite, not only because of the great cuisine, but also because proceeds benefit TUTS, which has been staging great performances for Houston audiences since the late 1960s. Participating wineries included Hensley, Nice, Amici, Decimus and Bravante. 

Star-struck TUTS fans at the Vine & Dine Dinner. 

       
  2011 Hensley Cabernet wins Silver at SF Chronicle Wine Competition

The results are in from the 2015 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and we are pleased to announce that our 2011 Hensley Cabernet Sauvignon was awarded a silver medal. This year's competition received a record-breaking 6,300 entries, from independent winemakers and boutique wineries to large scaale producers. Many of the winning wines will be poured at the Public Tasting on February 14 at Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. Although we haven't released our 2011 wine yet, stay tuned for details about a pre-release party this spring. Even better, you can send us an email if you would like to pre-order your 2011 wine. 

 

The popular public tasting encourages attendees to taste, learn and enjoy.


Summer 2014 News from Hensley Family Vineyards

Carol Hensley - Friday, July 18, 2014

 

HENSLEY FAMILY VINEYARDS :: SUMMER 2014 :: WINE NEWS & UPDATES

 
 
 

Touching down in Napa Valley, mixing old habits with new experiences

Dear {tag_recipientfirstname},


July is one of our favorite times in Napa Valley. We start every trip with a meal at Mustards Grill, drop in for a drink at Bouchon bar, and hit the St. Helena Farmer's Market on Friday morning to take in the fresh seafood, people-watching and intense bocce competitions. We also seek out cool art (flying stainless steel rabbits, Ansel Adams, rock star posters); catch up with interesting people like our grape grower, Don Thomas; and, of course, drink great wine -- some of which is well known, some of which we would like to keep secret. Speaking of great wine, our 2010 Hensley Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon is drinking exceptionally well right now. It's the combination of beautiful hillside fruit, the right winemaking instincts and a little bit of that dream-making that goes on in Napa Valley. Our recent July trip was a culmination of all those experiences -- plus one inspiring story. Our host at a well-known winery told us he was slugging away at a steady managerial job in Pittsburgh just one year ago. Longing to be in wine country (even though he had never visited), he and his wife quit their jobs, sold their home and moved to Napa. Neither had a house nor a job when they arrived -- in fact, he said his mother-in-law didn't think they were serious even as they packed their trailer. But that was a year ago. Now they have jobs, a house and a fulfilled dream. Life is good in Napa Valley. Can't wait to see what our next trip brings.


Pop! Clink! Cheers ...

Mike & Carol Hensley
    

 

Don Thomas at his home in Rutherford, with Mike.

In March, we discovered Bunny Foo Foo by artist Lawrence Argent, at Hall Winery.

Joe Schmitt captured the brilliance of Independence Day fireworks at Silverado Resort in Napa.

       
 

Customer Profile: Meet Diane and Phil Bazelides

Our good friends Diane and Phil Bazelides started this wine journey through their great hospitality and Napa Valley traditions. We've enjoyed traveling with them and sharing many memorable wine experiences. Here's a look into their world:

Our wine story really starts with you -- when you invited us on your Napa Valley July 4th vacation many years ago. How did Napa hit your radar initially?
We were in San Francisco for the first time years ago and decided we'd better check out Napa while we were there.  We drove up and back in one day and visited Christian Brothers, Beringer, Robert Mondavi and a few others that were popular back then. We even drove over to Sonoma on that terribly curvy road through the countryside. What a day! Who knew we'd be going back nearly every year after that.
You travel quite a bit. Tell us about some memorable wine regions you've visited around the globe.
We've been fortunate to travel to the Bordeaux and Tuscany areas, and they are beautiful.  Our favorite trips, though, have been to the Stellenbosch and Franschhoek areas of South Africa.  Ralph and Etienne Liebman put us on to South African wines and arranged for us to meet with some winemakers and winery owners on a trip in 2001. We traveled there again last fall and couldn't believe how much the wine country had developed. The countryside is even more beautiful, the people are very friendly and the wines are superb.
What's your idea of a fun "wine and dine" night?
We really like to get together with friends at home and everyone brings a special bottle of wine they've had stowed away. Most of the time we're drinking wine we wouldn't be able to find in a wine store or restaurant. Or, if we could we'd all be too cheap to pay the price!

 

Diane and Phil Bazelides

Mike, Carol, Diane and Phil

You own numerous bottles of great wine. Tell us about a bottle or two that have special memories attached.
The wines that are most special to us are the ones made by winemakers we know and with whom we are or have become friends. When we enjoy one of their wines, we remember the good times we've had with them and are really proud of their success. We just returned from our annual trip to Napa over July 4th with family and friends. We've been attending the BBQ and fireworks celebration at Silverado Country Club for years, which also includes quite a bit of wine and a few cigars. If anyone hasn't done this, it is great fun. Most importantly, it led to the Hensley Family Vineyards Cabernet!



       
 

Talk of the table

We were thrilled to receive this beautiful photo of Laurie and Wade Phillips sharing dinner and a bottle of our Hensley Cabernet Sauvignon at Capital Grille Restaurant. Few evenings can compare to a fabulous meal with a great bottle of wine, shared among friends. Readers, we hope you are busy planning your next evening out.

 
       
 

Summer is sizzling

It's the middle of July -- do you know where your favorite wine is? If so, grab it and make some summer memories. We've already been to several wine dinners, uncorked a million bottles of Sauvignon Blanc to chill the Houston heat, taken the paddle boat for a spin around the lake, compared the goods at 3 different farmer's markets, road-tripped to the College World Series in Omaha, slept in (as "in" as a 7-year-old will allow) and basically just breathed in the sights and sounds of a season that comes early, stays late and often over-extends with its heat barometer. But the intentions are good, the air conditioning is great and the wines of summer are calling, so enjoy. Corks are off, summer is on, and don't forget that Restaurant Weeks starts August 1. Go try some new places and have fun.

Winemaker Craig Parker sells gourmet foods at the Central Texas farmer's market along the Brazos River.

 

One of our favorite waiters, Melvin, breaks out the summer wines for our dinner with friends.



       

HISTORIC HEIGHTS

Pardon the cliche, but our wine was on fire at the Historic Heights Fire Station during the Vintage Select Portfolio Tasting this spring. This gem of a building was built in 1912 and used as a fire station until 1995. In 1997, it was restored as a rental facility for events and celebrations, and it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Our Texas distributors, Buddy and Trish Hagner, pulled out all the corks for another fabulous afternoon of fun. This year's pouring was a real people-watching opportunity, as many high-profile chefs, sommeliers, restaurant managers and wine buyers stopped by to sample the portfolio and mingle with industry friends and colleagues. 

Lots of mixing and mingling at the Historic Heights Fire Station.                                                                                

 


Buy our wine today

 * click on our website link above;

 * call us at 713-686-4647;

 * email carol@hensleyfamilyvineyards.com
                                           
Why not host a wine dinner or tasting for other wine lovers you know and introduce them to our cab -- we would love to work with you and plan a great evening. 

Industry purchasers in Texas can contact Vintage Select Wines at 713.432.9463, or send an email to info@vintageselectwines.com for more information.

In Ohio, contact Wine Trends at 800.327.7017 or access http://www.winetrendsinc.com

Our thanks to these venues for carrying our wine:

  • Dean & Deluca -- St. Helena and Georgetown;
  • Grape & Grain -- Kerrville, TX;
  • MacArthur Beverages -- Wash., D.C.
  • Miramont Country Club -- Bryan, TX
  • Morton's Steakhouse -- Santa Ana, CA
  • Mustards Grill -- Yountville, CA
  • Myron's Prime Steakhouse -- San Antonio, TX
  • Paesano's Quarry -- San Antonio, TX
  • The Clubs at Cordillera Ranch -- Central TX
  • Total Wine & More -- 7 California locations
  • V Wine Cellar -- Yountville, CA
  • Valencia Wine Bar -- Valencia, CA
  • Zella's Liquors and Wine -- Seguin, TX;

  • In Ohio
  • Mama Vita's
  • Kroger -- Harpers Point
  • Whole Foods Market 56
  • Tutto Vino
  • Andersons General
  • Wholesale Beer & Wine
  • Mustard Seed Cafe
  • Wine Reserve of Bainbridge
  • Piazza Discepoli Glendale
  • Little Miami River Wine
  • Rustic Hills Country Club
  • Dorothy Lane Springboro
  • Kroger -- Centerville
  • Zinks Meats & Fine Wines
  • Jungle Jim's Eastgate
  • Thyme Squared
  • Washington Place
  • Swirl
  • Kroger -- Englewood
  • Rumbleseat Wine
  • Wine Works
  • Heinens 10 Mayfield
  • Red Wine and Brew
  • Heritage Golf Club
  • Little Sonoma Fine Wines
  • Inn at Versailles
  • Hospitality House
  • A Bottle or Two
  • Mentor Disc Tobacco & Beverage
  • L Albatros
  •  

     

     

     

    Throughout Greater Houston

  • Backstreet Café
  • Brasserie 19
  • Capital Grille
  • Fleming's River Oaks
  • GenuWine Tasting Room
  • Houston Country Club
  • Houston Wine Merchant
  • Jasper's -- The Woodlands
  • Lakeside Country Club
  • La Griglia
  • Mockingbird Bistro
  • RDG Bar Annie
  • Reef
  • Roost
  • Sorrel Urban Bistro
  • The Club at Carlton Woods
  • The Tasting Room Uptown Park
  • Tiny Boxwood's
  • Triniti
  • Vine Wine Room
  • Wine Styles
  • Yapa Kitchen Fresh Take-Away  

  •  

    February 2014 News from Hensley Family Vineyards

    Carol Hensley - Saturday, February 15, 2014

     

    HENSLEY FAMILY VINEYARDS :: FEBRUARY 2014 :: WINE NEWS & UPDATES

     
     

    TASTING UPDATE

    Dear {tag_recipientfirstname}

    We're excited to announce that our 2010 Hensley Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon has been awarded a Gold Rating in our price category from the 2014 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition. Our wine will be poured at the Public Tasting on February 15 at Fort Mason in San Francisco. The 2014 judging included a record number of 5,825 entries from over 1,500 wineries in 25 states, making it the largest competition of wines in America. The Public Tasting is a great way to introduce our wine to both novice and experienced wine enthusiasts in the San Francisco Bay Area. Proceeds from the event help support wine and food education at educational institutions and non-profit organization throughout California. For more information, access winejudging.com. And, as a thank-you for the support we've received from our friends and customers, we're offering 30 percent off the case price of our 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon from now through February 15.To place your order, just emailmike@hensleyfamilyvineyards.com.

    Pop, clink, cheers!

    Mike & Carol Hensley

                                       

           
    Customer Profile: Meet Maureen Higdon

    When Maureen Higdon travels the world, her itinerary is packed with good friends, great wine and visits to venues that reveal a love for art, conversation and beautiful places. Taking a seat at her table (which is usually in some exquisite restaurant) is always a treat. Here's a look into her world.

    Maureen, you spent a good part of 2013 in the air. Tell us about some of your favorite stops. What an exciting question! First, I must say I enjoy all my travels and approach them with gusto! But easily my first favorite is always Paris ... the amazing Luxembourg Gardens ... then closely followed by Hyde Park London for long walks, Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire, UK (home of Winston Churchill), and lastly, as I could fill up the page with just this question, a proper truffle hunt with a fourth generation hunter and his dogs in Norcia, Umbria.

    How has your interest in art fit into those travels -- can you share a great exhibit or gallery that stands out? Seeing and relishing the art treasures in the world is one of my favorite things to do. This past year alone just imagine … a Vivaldi Quatre Saisons concert under the most beautiful stained glass windows in the world at St. Chapelle, Paris; The Impressionist Wing of the Musee D'Orsay, Paris, built in an old train station. It's truly one of the most outstanding buildings and collections anywhere ... think "Ball at Moulin de La Galette" by Renoir and "Blue Dancers" by Degas! Lastly, the stunning gardens and sculptures of Rodin at the Rodin Museum, Paris ... and so much more.

     

    Even the busiest traveler has to stop for a sip of wine every now and then. Where do you most enjoy drinking wine and why?

    The best place to drink wine is surrounded by friends and family, surrounded by laughter and conversation, but if I have to name some places to sip wine ... a sunny sidewalk Parisian cafe watching the world pass by for hours. Equally wonderful is the 22nd floor patio of my Florida condo looking out at a Gulf of Mexico sunset!

    What are your preferred places and plans for celebrating? A few special places are under the trees with twinkling white lights at Campielo, Naples, Florida ... superb! In London, at a jewelbox Provenccedilal restaurant, "La Poule au Pot," and lastly, I love Brasserie 19 right here in Houston!

    And when it's time for a toast, what do you recommend? Oh, did I forget to mention favorite wines? I am always happy with a wonderful peppery Chateauneuf du Pape, an old Pio Cesare Barolo and a great Veuve Clicquot champagne! Happy travels and sharing great wine with friends and family!

                                                                                                   
    Winemaker to watch

    Our winemaker, Jeff Fontanella, was one of Four Napa Valley Winemakers To Watch in Wine Enthusiast's Insiders Guide to California, published in Fall 2013. The interview chronicled the evolution of Jeff's career and the journey he and his wife, Karen, have made to establish their beautiful Fontanella Family Winery on Mt. Veeder. We were thrilled to see our Hensley Family listed as one of the wine labels he oversees. The article concludes that a stop at Jeff's winery is well worth a detour off the beaten path of Highway 29 -- we couldn't agree more!

      

    Buy our wine today

     * click on our website link above;

     * call us at 713-686-4647;

     * email carol@hensleyfamilyvineyards.com
                                               
    Why not host a wine dinner or tasting for other wine lovers you know and introduce them to our cab -- we would love to work with you and plan a great evening. 

    Industry purchasers in Texas can contact Vintage Select Wines at 713.432.9463, or send an email to info@vintageselectwines.comfor more information.

    In Ohio, contact Wine Trends at 800.327.7017 or access http://www.winetrendsinc.com

    Our thanks to these venues for carrying our wine:

  • Dean & Deluca -- St. Helena and Georgetown;
  • Grape & Grain -- Kerrville, TX;
  • MacArthur Beverages -- Wash., D.C.
  • Morton's Steakhouse -- Santa Ana, CA
  • Mustards Grill -- Yountville, CA
  • Myron's Prime Steakhouse -- San Antonio, TX
  • Paesano's Quarry -- San Antonio, TX
  • The Clubs at Cordillera Ranch -- Central TX
  • Total Wine & More -- 7 California locations
  • V Wine Cellar -- Yountville, CA
  • Valencia Wine Bar -- Valencia, CA
  • Zella's Liquors and Wine -- Seguin, TX;

  • In Ohio
  • Mama Vita's
  • Kroger -- Harpers Point
  • Whole Foods Market 56
  • Tutto Vino
  • Andersons General
  • Wholesale Beer & Wine
  • Mustard Seed Cafe
  • Wine Reserve of Bainbridge
  • Piazza Discepoli Glendale
  • Little Miami River Wine
  • Rustic Hills Country Club
  • Dorothy Lane Springboro
  • Kroger -- Centerville
  • Zinks Meats & Fine Wines
  • Jungle Jim's Eastgate
  • Thyme Squared
  • Washington Place
  • Swirl
  • Kroger -- Englewood
  • Rumbleseat Wine
  • Wine Works
  • Heinens 10 Mayfield
  • Red Wine and Brew
  • Heritage Golf Club
  • Little Sonoma Fine Wines
  • Inn at Versailles
  • Hospitality House
  • A Bottle or Two
  • Mentor Disc Tobacco & Beverage
  • L Albatros
  •  

     

     

     

    Throughout Greater Houston

  • Backstreet Café
  • Brasserie 19
  • Capital Grille
  • Fleming's River Oaks
  • GenuWine Tasting Room
  • Houston Country Club
  • Houston Wine Merchant
  • Jasper's -- The Woodlands
  • Lakeside Country Club
  • La Griglia
  • Mockingbird Bistro
  • RDG Bar Annie
  • Reef
  • Roost
  • Sorrel Urban Bistro
  • The Club at Carlton Woods
  • The Tasting Room Uptown Park
  • Tiny Boxwood's
  • Triniti
  • Vine Wine Room
  • Wine Styles
  • Yapa Kitchen Fresh Take-Away  
  • 2011 Vintage -- Mike uncorks a sample bottle of our 2011 Hensley Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon. Once again, we think our high quality hillside fruit is coming together for another great year. More to come.

     

    Spring 2013 News from Hensley Family Vineyards

    Carol Hensley - Tuesday, May 28, 2013
    SPRING NEWS 2013
    HENSLEY FAMILY VINEYARDS

      
    Dear {tag_recipientfirstname},
     
    We're rewinding 5 months of Hensley Family Vineyards to recap some highlights, because 2013 has been a sensational launch. January -- bottled our 2010 Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon and a delicious new reserve called The Don; February -- boarded the bus for Winter's Wonder Roadshow Revival across the great state of Ohio; March -- poured wine at numerous parties and gatherings involving Texas spring break and March Madness (and our bracket had more red stains on it than a cocktail napkin thanks to Wichita State and Florida Gulf Coast); April -- threw open the doors for our 2010 release party and cheered heartily with 100 of our closest wine-loving friends. We're off to a great start and we have a lot more to share with you. So pop a cork on your bottle of our 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon and stay tuned for more.
     
    Pop! Clink! Cheers!

    Mike and Carol

    @cabguymike @pouringhensley

    Customer Profile: Meet Jody Johnston



    Jody with wife Angela (left) and Summer Shaw.

    Upbeat, informed, enthusiastic ... these are the words that immediately come to mind when we're thinking about our good friend Jody Johnston. We've shared many good times with Jody and his wife, Angela, and Jody has been a great promoter of our wine. Jody has a big heart for people and community but always puts family first. Here's a look into his world:

    Jody, you always seem to know the best restaurants. What's your secret?

    Angela is the secret. She is an awesome cook and loves to find a great place like me. She reads blogs and food magazines, as well as has friends who love food just like us. Also, we are never afraid to try anything. Even a place that others might shy away from, we are always game to try something new. My favorites are those hidden gems.

    You have been a true friend to Hensley Family Vineyards -- how do you manage to know so many people who love wine?

    My business as an advisor of 10 years means I meet lots of people. However, I have always loved meeting people and my number one goal is to make an impact in the life of everyone I meet. By getting to know great people who know I care about them, I am able to find out what they love in life -- and that includes wine!

    Describe a perfect moment involving good food, good friends and good wine.

    Any time we are with the Hensleys!

    What's on your plate in 2013? Any projects in particular that have captured your attention?

    We are very intentional about life. Naturally I am a planner and that extends way beyond finance. Every year I create a Map and that map guides us in our life both today and our vision that God has for us in the future. Right now we are serving in our church, Agape Ministries, and FCA. In addition I am head soccer coach for Maggie and Head T-ball coach for Hardy and this is my most important hat! Being a great dad and husband are number one to me. Angela is super involved, too, in all these things and more! Life is fast and fun for us!

    In closing, what's something people would be surprised to know about you?

    I am really an open book, so I don't know if anything would be too surprising.

    California wines go to Washington for a stellar MacArthur Beverages dinner and tasting


    Aaron Nix-Gomez of Hogshead Wine Blog with Mike.

    MacArthur Beverages hosted hundreds of loyal attendees at its 28th annual California dinner and futures tasting, April 26-27, in Washington, DC. Guests packed the Mandarin Oriental Hotel ballroom on Friday evening for a fabulous dinner prepared by Executive Chef Didier Pouzier. On Saturday, more than 40 California wineries poured their current releases and barrel samples during two tasting sessions. We were thrilled with the positive feedback we received on our 2010 and 2011 Hensley Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon wine, and amazed to meet so many "loyalists" who have participated in this event for 15 or more consecutive years. MacArthur has been Washington DC's premiere wine store for over 50 years. Proceeds from this annual event benefit the Addy and Bruce Bassin Memorial Cancer Research Fund. For a wonderful recap of the event and the vintners, access Aaron's blog at http://hogsheadwine.wordpress.com.

    Wine Trends' Winter's Wonder Roadshow Revival was a hot ticket for a cold Texan

     

    Preparing to pour at the historic Cleveland Arcade.

    Mike was thrilled to board the Wine Trends bus for a 4-day Roadshow Revival throughout major markets in Ohio, Feb. 17-21. Not only was the roadshow a great way to present our 2009 Hensley Cabernet Sauvignon to buyers in the Cleveland, Cincinnati, Dayton and Columbus markets, it was also an excellent opportunity to visit some of Ohio's most inspiring entertainment venues. Portfolio presentation stops along the route included The Cleveland Arcade, the Cincinnati Music Hall, the Dayton Art Institute and The Lincoln Theater in Columbus. We poured our wine alongside other premium labels and shared the Hensley wine story with hundreds of potential buyers representing Ohio's top retail wine establishments. Our thanks to Wine Trends for great hospitality and a first-rate selling showcase.

    Buy our wine today by: 

  • clicking on our website link above;
  • calling us at 713-686-4647;
  • email carol@hensleyfamilyvineyards.com


    Why not host a wine dinner or tasting for other wine lovers you know and introduce them to our cab -- we would love to work with you and plan a great evening. 

    Industry purchasers in Texas can contact Vintage Select Wines at 713.432.9463, or send an email to sales@vintageselectwines.com for more information.

    In Ohio, contact Wine Trends at 800.327.7017 or access http://www.winetrendsinc.com for contact information.

    In Southern California, retail buyers can contact Vinwest International, 623.551.3239, or go to www.vinwest.com/brokers.html for broker contact information. 

    In Northern California, contact Canopy Wine Group, 707.291.8005, or visit the company website at http://www.canopywinegroup.com.


  • Bottled, sealed, labeled and luscious ... introducing our 2010 Cabernet Sauvignon

     

    Mike with winemaker Jeff Fontanella on bottling day.

    High atop Mt. Veeder on a pristine January morning, we bottled our 2010 Hensley Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon and set high expectations for another great vintage. Some tasting notes to set the tone -- The 2010 wine has a deep, rich color and a powerful nose that showcases an elegant aroma of blueberry and blackberry. Our Rutherford fruit packs a powerful structure that includes hints of liquorish, smoke and chocolate on the front and mid palate. The acidity and tannins tantalize the tongue, as the Mt. Veeder fruit ignites the back palate with a slight raspberry and cherry finish. The 26 months in barrel has added a nice touch of spice and oak to the wine. The wine can be laid down for 10 to 12 years comfortably. Enough shop talk -- enjoy!

    Back in Houston, we popped the cork on our latest release and toasted with a few friends

    Release Party: Mike and Susan Heldebrand, Carol Hensley, Laura and Bobby Wheless.

    On April 18, we threw open the doors in Houston and shared our 2010 Hensley Cabernet Sauvignon with about 100 friends and customers at our annual release party. For close to 3 hours, the rain fell, the wine flowed and our guests mingled happily while sipping our wine and sampling delicious appetizers from LaGriglia Restaurant. Guests were also treated to a splash of our new reserve, The Don, named after our vineyard owner in the beautiful Rutherford District of Napa Valley (more to come in our next issue). Many thanks to our good friend Quy Tran for capturing all the fun on film (if you attended, watch your email for a photo!) 

    Release Party: Kim and Ryan Dolibois


    Release Party: Mark and Sharon Schwartz

    A silver medal and a Golden Gate view add a little shine to our Napa Valley wine

     

    Our 2009 Hensley Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon won a silver medal in the 2013 San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition (and we're in some stellar company!). With a record-breaking 5,500 entries this year from across the U.S., the contest is the precursor to the perenially popular Public Wine Tasting at Fort Mason Center in San Francisco. The beautiful tasting by the bay showcases many of the award-winning wines and gourmet food pairings. Proceeds help support wine and food education at educational institutions and non-profit organizations throughout California. For more information, go to www.winejudging.com. 

    Dinner in the Vineyards: Napa pourings and pairings under a starry Houston sky

    Kristen Heyburn, Carol Hensley and Melissa Morris

    Our Great Gathering fundraiser for River Oaks Elementary on Feb. 9th was one of those refreshing evenings where friends linger over good food and wine while swapping stories about kiddos, family activities and life in general. Along with our co-hosts, Kristen and Paul Heyburn and Melissa and Matt Morris, we were joined by 7 other couples whose children attend our school. The evening began with a "Pop" of sophistication  featuring whites and bubbles, followed by a "Clink" of hearty dining as we shifted to big reds, ending with a rowdy round of "Cheers" as we perused dessert wines and chocolate. It was a great gathering for an important cause -- and we  may just do it again next year! 

    Our thanks to these great venues for carrying our wine: 

  • Dean & Deluca -- St. Helena and Georgetown
  • Grape & Grain -- Kerrville, TX 
  • MacArthur Beverages -- Wash., D.C.
  • Morton's Steakhouse -- Santa Ana, CA
  • Mustards Grill -- Yountville, CA
  • Myron's Prime Steakhouse -- San Antonio, TX
  • Paesano's Quarry -- San Antonio, TX
  • The Clubs at Cordillera Ranch -- Central TX
  • Total Wine & More -- 7 California locations
  • V Wine Cellar -- Yountville, CA
  • Valencia Wine Bar -- Valencia, CA
  • Zella's Liquors and Wine -- Seguin, TX 

    In Ohio: 

  • Mama Vita's
  • Kroger -- Harpers Point
  • Whole Foods Market 56
  • Tutto Vino
  • Andersons General
  • Wholesale Beer & Wine
  • Mustard Seed Cafe
  • Wine Reserve of Bainbridge
  • Piazza Discepoli Glendale
  • Little Miami River Wine
  • Rustic Hills Country Club
  • Dorothy Lane Springboro
  • Kroger -- Centerville
  • Zinks Meats & Fine Wines
  • Jungle Jim's Eastgate
  • Thyme Squared
  • Washington Place
  • Swirl
  • Kroger -- Englewood
  • Rumbleseat Wine
  • Wine Works
  • Heinens 10 Mayfield
  • Red Wine and Brew
  • Heritage Golf Club
  • Little Sonoma Fine Wines
  • Inn at Versailles
  • Hospitality House
  • A Bottle or Two
  • Mentor Disc Tobacco & Beverage
  • L Albatros
  • Throughout Greater Houston --


  • Backstreet Cafe
  • Brasserie 19
  • Capital Grille
  • Fleming's River Oaks
  • GenuWine Tasting Room
  • Houston Country Club
  • Houston Wine Merchant
  • Jasper's -- The Woodlands
  • Lakeside Country Club
  • La Griglia
  • Mockingbird Bistro
  • Reef
  • Roost
  • Sorrel Urban Bistro
  • The Club at Carlton Woods
  • The Tasting Room Uptown Park
  • Triniti
  • Vine Wine Room
  • Wine Styles