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“A Pleasant Surprise and Darn Good Time”
Review of Messina Hof Winery

Messina Hof Winery
Ranked #1 of 22 things to do in Bryan
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Founded on the cornerstones of family, tradition and romance, Messina Hof Winery & Resort has held its place as a Brazos Valley staple since its founding in 1977. It is the estate winery where the Messina Hof winemaking team crafts our world-class wines. Messina Hof had humble beginnings as founders, Paul Vincent and Merrill Bonarrigo ran the lab, tastings, etc right out of their living room. Our current Tasting Room, also known as the Guest Center, was the rebuilt home that wa originally the Ursuline Academy, which was an all girls school. The original brick from the home was used to build the Tasting Room that guests can still see today.
Reviewed 7 July 2014

For two reasons I had low expectations going to Messina Hof, but other travelers we had spoken too were so complimentary, I felt it was worth the try. Wine is a subjective, personal thing I know, but my experience with most Texas wines is not too good: I usually find the whites too light or sweet, and the reds too full of calcium-like minerality or earthiness. My prior experience with Messina Hof was that they produced run of the mill sweet wines, but I was pleasantly surprised to learn that is not all.
When we arrived it looked a lot like winery tastings rooms I have seen in Sonoma and Napa, CA, and I saw grape vines right there next to the main building. As we entered, the place was busy on an early Saturday afternoon, and we had too wait a few minutes to get to the tasting bar, but this was fun because I spotted several wine varieties I had not expected, along with quite a few gift items and accessories. They price their wine tasting differently than other wineries, and I feared it would either end up costing a lot, or I would not sample enough to know much about their style after all. It turned out I was wrong. Our Wine Guide, Michael Broussard, was very knowledgeable about wines in general, but also very well trained on Messina Hof wines. He was excited, enthusiastic, and proud to put quite a few samples into my hands and allow my tastes to dictate what I would enjoy. I admit, one or two had that characteristic minerally taste that I feel overpowers the fruit and other wine attributes, but we truly enjoyed the quality and taste of the Primitivo, the Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon (in both Private Reserve and private label "Pauolo" bottlings), and a 2010 Aggie Association Merlot. These are made by grapes from estates and single vineyards up in the Texas high plains, and offered quite an eye opener of enjoyment to me. But, the best was the local estate grown grapes that were used to produce the Port and the Sherry that simply took our breath away. There is a pleasant light sweet flavor on both Port and Sherry that tastes like Amaretto, and went exquisitely with chocolate. Port has never been my favorite both for the sweetness and the often sharp alcohol taste. But I had to take home one bottle of each, they were so good. And, I have to say if it had not been for the patient and thorough description offered by Michael that we may have never gotten that far. My wife struck up a conversation with a lady who was looking for a wedding gift and she also ended up taking four nice bottles with her, too, and we we all joined the Messina Hof Wine Club. I plan to go there and pick up my wines at the next release date, and that is something we cannot too often do with California wines clubs due to travel expense.
Messina Hof also has a wine bar, a restaurant, a bed & breakfast, and a place for weddings or large gatherings. If you have been reluctant like I was, give it a try, you should end up having a great time... and be sure to ask for Michael Broussard, although all the staff we met were fun and friendly.

1  Thank mebramson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (196)
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127 - 131 of 196 reviews

Reviewed 7 June 2014

The information about the history of wine making in Texas was interesting. The trip outside to see the vines and then inside for the vats was quick but informative. The wine tasting in the souvenir glass was great. We also visited the lobby of the bed and breakfast and heard about the history of the decor. My group ate at the onsite restaurant and had a great meal.

1  Thank jeanniel107
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2014

We were not expecting much from a winery in the middle of Texas, but were very pleasantly surprised! The property is beautiful, with the Villa interesting in that it feels as though you are in Europe somewhere as it has gorgeous European furnishings and decorations. We did the Winery tour which was very informative, and the wine tasting was superb. So much so that we will be ordering wines as soon as we are home for long enough to take delivery. The staff were all very friendly and helpful - we will certainly return for a visit if we are in the region again!

Thank bushandsea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Scott S, General Manager at Messina Hof Winery, responded to this reviewResponded 5 June 2014

Thank you for your wonderful comments. We are very glad you found our winery and had such a pleasant experience. Come back and see us soon. Check our website for our many events through the year, like our Port, Bourbon and Cigar dinner for Father's Day weekend, or our month long series of events for Harvest in August! You can actually pick and stomp grapes then!

We appreciate your business and look forward to having you back. Please do not hesitate to contact me directly if I can assist with any future plans here at Messina Hof.

Thank you!

Scott Sloan
General Manager

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Reviewed 26 May 2014

It was Sunday after my daughter's graduation and we just wanted to spend some relaxing time together so we headed to Messina Hof not knowing what to expect. We wandered into the visitor center/store and noticed an interesting area off to the side, It was a wine bar. There were maybe 6 other people sitting around chatting when we noticed they were eating and assortment of snacks that looked very tasty. We ordered a cheese & cracker assortment and some other goodies plus a couple glasses of local wine and sat outside under shade next to a small lake full of turtles. This is a great place to chat and relax with friends and family.

Thank Graeme P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Scott S, General Manager at Messina Hof Winery, responded to this reviewResponded 30 May 2014

Thank you for your comments about your visit with us. You discovered one of our best secrets - our outdoor deck overlooking the lake. We have a fire pit for the cooler evenings, cute turtles to feed and of course, wine and cheese service from our Wine Bar. We are so glad you had such a peaceful wonderful time.

We look forward to having you back real soon. Thank you again for sharing your comments with us.

Scott Sloan
General Manager

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Reviewed 14 May 2014

We love wineries and how owners and winemakers create their own particular mark on the industry. This is a lovely setting with great ports. We try to keep to the wines that the winery does best. In this case, ports! The Tawny Port was exquisite followed closely by the Reserve Private Reserve Papa Paulo Port. The latter is better with chocolate but we like both with dark chocolate.

A well-stocked wine store, a beautiful setting and personable staff make this a worthwhile stop. Take the time to visit!

Thank Karen C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Scott S, General Manager at Messina Hof Winery, responded to this reviewResponded 30 May 2014

Thank you for your wonderful comments. Our Ports are truly incredible and we are so glad you discovered our Tawny while you were here.

We look forward to your return visit soon. Please do not hesitate to contact me directly if I can assist with your next trip to Messina Hof. Don't forget to check our website for our events this summer, especially our Harvest in August, where we actually pick the grapes we make our ports from!

Thank you!

Scott Sloan
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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