Texans, where do you buy wine?

Specs in Dallas.

Separate (interesting iPhone changed that to desperate) question, what are the legalities of driving wine across state lines (into TX)?

Or perhaps Chris has given the best advice

I second the recommendation of the Austin Wine Merchant. Downtown Austin … Real relaxed atmosphere, great staff, superb selection especially on French and Italian. I don’t drink bubbly but I have been told it is an excellent selection. Spec’s are always reliable for the usual and some have some very interesting selections… Quite different store by store in my experience. Cheers, Bob

Thanks for the recommendations. I truly was looking for in-state merchants that would be suitable.

This thread now exists for anyone to find at any time from now on. Seems like a useful addition to this wine board.

That something so innocuous and potentially helpful caused you to post in opposition of it existing is beyond my understanding. Not clicking seems like a far more reasonable course of action, no?

Kyle, I think Chris was giving helpful advice to the OP, not posting in opposition of this thread existing.

I think Texans ought to experience some discomfort for the role they play in stealing jobs away from other states.

Texas is a tricky state for sure. I do not miss the shipping issues I had with my 6yrs in San Antonio–whether it was retailers that wouldn’t ship or very narrow shipping windows (nov-march is sometimes it).
Luckily in San Antonio I developed some very good retail connections and I would encourage the same in Dallas. There’s been some consolidation recently in the Dallas market, I’m sure the locals can help you out there. In SA I’d recommend Gabriel’s superstore, you want to talk to joe baker. I would second Austin wine market, especially for rhone/burgs. I used to phone order everything and pick up when I had a case 2-3x a year. Seemed to work well. Austin is a great city to visit anyway.
Even though retailers may be located in Texas they may not be able to ship within the state depending on what county they are in and where it’s going to. I couldn’t even get Specs to ship me stuff from Houston to the store in San Antonio. You may have better luck. Be prepared for a little sticker shock compared to the competitive DC market.

If a retailer sends inventory across county lines to another one of their stores it falls under the state’s “bootlegging” law.

For South Texas, Austin Wine Merchant is by far the best. They have a wine geek’s selection, to the extent wines are available in Texas (most of the great stuff is not). Gabriel’s Super Store in SA has some properly aged gems, but you will pay a fine premium.

If Kendrick says Spec’s in Dallas, you can trust they have lots of top $ Burgundy.

BTW Kendrick, all you want to know about bringing hooch home https://www.tabc.state.tx.us/faq/personal_importation.asp

sweeet jesus, you can’t even buy wine in your own state and have it shipped?

You can have it shipped to you, just not to another store to be purchased there (if the store is across county lines).

Even then, it can’t be shipped to you if you’re in a dry county/zip code, which Dallas has several.

Actually, you can do whatever you want…there are plenty of options that just shouldn’t be discussed openly in a public forum for fear that the enemy will learn our tactics and find a way to shut them down (or go after you personally).

Hard to fathom, but there are parts of Dallas, a major city, that prohibit alcohol sales entirely. I’m not talking about out in the country, but in the middle of the dang city. This leads to liquor stores populating all 4 corners of the freeway exit of the first wet precinct. Hard liquor, throughout the state, is only sold in liquor stores Monday through Saturday. Beer and wine can be purchased 7 day a week at groceries and pharmacies, but only after noon on Sundays.

BYOB is only allowed if the establishment does not hold a hard liquor license (they have a beer & wine permit only).

The 3 tier system here is the largest political donor and our laws reflect it.

Did I mention the weather sucks and there are lots of bugs?

Welcome to Tejas amigo.

SOOOOOO bizarre. What’s even more bizarre is the building I’m moving into obtained a license to be able to have a bar in our lobby just for residents. I know it’ll serve beer, but not sure about liquor. I’m truly spoiled living in DC where it seems like anything goes.

Interesting. Didn’t know that. They also wouldn’t ship to my house. I think they are retail only at the time at least. I found their lack of effort to sell me cases of Bdx at decent prices annoying, and moved on.

I’ll pile on in support for Austin Wine Merchant. Very nice selection from France and helpful folks. Typically priced pretty fairly to mailing list prices too. I’ve purchased some Kutch there, for example, that was only “direct from list pricing + $3” which you can even improve with the discount for buying 6+ bottles.

I think you may be looking at it wrong. Here is what your Saturday could look like:

  • Leave Dallas with cooler in trunk at 8am, in Austin around 11:30am. Get BBQ at Franklins, LA Barbeque, Meullers, etc. for lunch.
  • Hit AWM on 6th street and buy many many wines.
  • Walk down the block to Whole Foods HQ store and geek out on beer and gourmet delights.
  • Walk to Waterloo Records and geek out on musical delights.
  • Walk to Book People and act smart and educated.
  • Drive over to Zilker and chill for a while.
  • Wreck yourself on some of the best mexican food you can find (many choices).
  • Optional: stay in town for a little live music.
  • Back in Dallas by sundown.
  • Repeat as necessary.


Uh, you’d have to understand the market to understand my post. Needless to say, it was not at all meant the way you must have thought. No biggie, others understand - especially those that live here.

Advantage to living in El Paso: Ship to my Las Cruces office!

Oops. N/m. Dang this iPad.