Texas Wine Merriment at the 290 Wine Castle

Discover 290 Wine Castle, a magical Texas winery housed in a storybook castle overlooking the Hill Country.
  • Winery Ambiance
  • Wine Selection (Red)
  • Wine Selection (White)
  • Wine Price / Value
  • Wine Club
4/5Overall Score

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • The Winery
  • The Wines
  • Other Notable Wines
  • The Wine Club
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Conclusion


As a Texas wine enthusiast, I am always on the search for new hidden gems among our state’s hundred-plus wineries. 290 Wine Castle in Johnson City is one of those special finds reminds me why I fell in love with Texas wines. Nestled in the rolling hills of wine country, this family-owned boutique winery crafts small batches of Texas wines that encapsulate the spirit of our great state.

In this review, I will highlight some of my favorite aspects of 290 Wine Castle, including its cozy hill country tasting room, the welcoming hospitality, and of course – their wines. From delicate whites to big, bold reds, 290 Wine Castle has something for every palate. I hope this review gives you a taste of why you need to add this charming winery to your Hill Country itinerary. Happy sipping, y’all!

What Makes the 290 Wine Castle Different?

The Medieval architecture and decor make it unique in the Texas Hill Country.

The Winery

Stepping into the tasting room at The 290 Wine Castle at Chateau de Chasse (the official name that i will shorten to 290 Wine Castle in this review) instantly transports you into a fairy tale scene – their beautiful facility is literally housed in a castle nestled amongst sprawling vineyards and rolling Texas hills.

The interior echoes old world charm with stone walls, iron chandeliers, and rows of barrels, while the exterior offers breathtaking Hill Country views from the regal turrets and covered deck overlooking the property. Funny enough, I was most amused by the toilet paper holders in the restroom (you’ll have to visit to see what I mean!)

In addition to the castle itself, Chateau de Chasse is now also home to The Bentley Hotel, a boutique adults-only 14-room hotel (12 rooms and 2 suites) located just behind the castle. The hotel’s rooms are each unique in style and face a courtyard with a lounging pool and hot tub. Rooms run about $250 per night.

The Wines

With a small vineyard of grapes grown on their 11-acre estate, 290 Wine Castle has a long menu of wine options from both Texas and other regions, with wines coming from Texas, California, Italy, and Spain. I have tasted a few, and I have highlighted some of them below. Wine tastings at the 290 Wine Castle are $25 each.

Rose Prosecco: I am usually not a rose person, but I am a prosecco person. I found the mixture of the two to land me right in the middle of the feelings for each of them. The rose side of things provided some hints of berries and grapefruit. If you like sweet bubbly wines, you’ll probably like this one.

Illusion: Another sparkling wine, Illusion is founded in Sauvignon Blanc grapes where you might find hints of apricot. I say “might” as I didn’t pick up on the apricot notes although their tasting sheet reference it.

2022 Sunshine: Continuing on for those with a sweet tooth, this white dessert wine is very sweet (as it should be) with a hint of lemon. This is a dry sweet Muscat Canelli. I could probably finish one quarter to one half a glass of this one.

Sauvignon Blanc: Getting more into the dry whites, this one was a good change after tasting the first three. I also found this one middle of the road for Sauvignon Blancs, but did pick out some of the peach notes it expressed.

2020 Bingeaux: This is a Texas Sangiovese with a strong blackberry flavor coming through on the finish. Not a bad wine, but not one to write home about.

2020 GSM: I really enjoyed the GSM (Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre) as it offered up a more complex suite of flavors. Actually, much lighter than expected, but that was a good thing. This is one of my recommended wines from the tastings.

2019 Rosso Piceno Cugnolo: My first taste of a Montepulciano blend wine in Texas this year. As this is one of my favorite types of wine, I had to have this one on my tasting list. With a seemingly more complex set of berry flavors, I would put it as my top pick of everything I tasted.

Other Notable Wines

Beyond the above, 290 Wine Castle produces several other wines produced in Texas. Since I focus on Texas wines, I did not opt to taste any from outside of Texas, such as the 2020 D’Accordo from California or the 2019 Rivafiorita-Passerina from Italy.

All in all, expect to pay from $40-$65 for bottles of their reds, and about $35 for their whites. Pricing is on par with most Texas wineries for non-member bottle purchases.

The Wine Club

As far as wine clubs go, the wine club at 290 Wine Castle is very competitive, and if you like the wines and live within driving distance, you might want to consider joining. They have 3 different levels (4, 6, and 12 bottle) and two options at each level: Red or mixed. With membership, you’ll get 20% off bottles, free wine each month, and a 20% discount off the Bentley Hotel.

Additionally, they host themed quarterly parties for members and guests including food and wine, and souvenir glasses. Members also have access to Rooftop Turrets and cigar lounge.


For Texas wine aficionados or anyone looking for a magical hill country experience, you should add 290 Wine Castle to your next wine country trip, not necessarily for the wines as I believe they are generally good but middle of the road, but for the medieval ambiance. The sweeping vineyard views, fairy tale castle architecture, and incredibly friendly staff provide a charming backdrop for their Texas wines that encapsulate the vibrant spirit of our state.

Frequently Asked Questions

What sets 290 Wine Castle apart from other Texas wineries? 290 Wine Castle stands out for the regal castle architecture housing their cozy tasting room as well as fantastic Texas wines produced in small batches.

What is the best wine you would recommend for someone new to Texas wines? For newcomers, I’d suggest the 2020 GSM red blend for a smooth, easy-drinking intro that captures Texas wine’s signature warm climate fruit flavors and subtle oak influences. It’s very accessible and showcases the best of Texas winemaking.

Are the wines sweet or dry in style? 290 Wine Castle offers a range from crisp, dry whites to bold dry reds along with some sweeter fruit-forward pour like their peach sangria. There’s something for every palate – I’d sample a range during your tasting to discover new favorites!

Can you order their wines online if you don’t live in Texas? Yes! 290 Wine Castle does ship many of their wines throughout the US, so you can enjoy their small batch wines no matter where you live. Check out their online shop for the latest offerings.

About the Author

A native of Texas, Ken “Texan” Pierce is a renowned alcohol aficionado with over 15 years of experience in the Texas wine, whiskey, and beer industry. With a vast number of alcohol production resources right in his back yard in the Texas Hill Country, Ken has made it his mission to promote and advance the Texas winemaking, distilling, and brewing industry across the country.  His uncanny ability to identify tasting notes and pairings makes him a respected authority within alcohol enthusiast circles. When he’s not reviewing the latest craft spirits, you can find Ken playing his guitar, trying to sing, and sipping on a Texas libation.

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