Sunday, September 12, 2010

Olives in the Hill Country

Today we headed out to Bella Vista Ranch in Wimberley to tour the grove of Olive trees and taste the oils and also wines from the proprietor's vineyard. The proprietor, Jack Dougherty, is actually the first in Texas to successfully grow olives! He was there today to present his creations and was a real pleasure to chat with, even if he hates the Red Sox. I really do enjoy talking with artisans about their creations and the inspiration behind them. So we spent the next half hour talking about his olives, the olive oils, wines, jams, and vinegarsThe olive oils were very light and flavorful. The blood orange infused oil was amazing. We also tasted a Fig & Vanilla balsamic vinegar which was inspired by a dessert at a restaurant in Austin. Delicious. The wines were also quite good. We came home with a bag of goodies - the Fig & Vanilla Balsamic, wine-filled chocolates, Sweet Almond olive oil soap, a Blackberry Wine, and the Lyte White wine. The wines are refreshing and perfect for sipping on the porch on these hot days.