Limestone Ledges and Red Sandy Soils

Limestone Ledges and Red Sandy Soils

The spring sun warmed my face as I gazed out over freshly greened prominences to the north from a perch high on an eastward-pointing finger of the Edwards Plateau: my personal piece of the Texas Hill Country. I sat there wondering how and where did the Texas wine experience all begin. As I let my mind override my eyes, I could “see” the defining moment.

The genesis occurred eons ago in a vast and desolate inland sea predating human consciousness— a wet and hostile place. At an unhurried, nearly immeasurable pace over millions of years, the shells of countless creatures were deposited on the ocean seabed.

A half a world away on a similar geological scale, a corresponding process occurred over parts of Europe. The Mediterranean Sea, much larger than its present size, provided its own incubator for geological birth over France.

Then, a millennium ago, the Phoenician Greeks landed on the rocky Mediterranean shore near Marseilles in southern France, bringing civilization, commerce, and their grape-growing expertise…In 1659, Spanish missionaries and a handful of Christianized native families made their trek into uncharted regions northward from Mexico [where] hot, dusty missionaries arrived with carefully protected vines whose grapes they used to prepare sacramental wine.

Excerpt from Chapter Two: Limestone Ledges and Red Sandy Soils

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