Often the region is compared to both Sonoma and Napa Valley, primarily because of the climate, and grapes are grown here en masse. In fact, most of Texas wine grapes — estimates are up to 90% of them — are grown within a 100-mile radius of Lubbock.
The Lone Star State, as it turns out, is the fourth largest wineproducing state in the U.S. Several wineries dot the swath of fertile terrain of the Lubbock region, and the ones we visited had tasting rooms and vineyards just as classy as any found in California.
Among those where we sampled the vino were Burklee Hill Vineyards-Trilogy Cellars in nearby Levelland, the highly awarded McPherson Cellars that is housed in Lubbock’s historic Coca-Cola Bottling Plant, Llano Estacado Winery that is one of the pioneers of the West Texas wine industry — it’s the second oldest winery in Texas — and has won hundreds of awards since it opened in 1976, the picturesque Caprock Winery that resembles an American Southwest-style mission, and finally the Frenchstyle Pheasant Ridge Winery that features the oldest pinot noir vines in Texas.
Get your day started at the Cast Iron Grill, a favorite home-style restaurant. Just inside the door are subtly lighted display cases filled with pie slices, lots of them, ranging from the signature Texas Delight, a layered concoction with cream cheese, chocolate pudding and pecans, to flavors of cheesecake, strawberry, pumpkin and beyond. Have a slice to complement a big ol’ country breakfast of chicken fried steak or biscuits and gravy.
If you’re craving coffee but not the ginormous breakfast, it’s always brewing in one of Lubbock’s cozy, trendy coffee shops. Take your pick of places such as iconic J&B Coffee that’s been around since 1979, Yellow House Coffee with its freshly baked pastries, and Sugar Brown’s, where you get to make your own breakfast s’mores.