Slated to open in late 2019 or early 2020, Messina Hof Harvest Green Winery will be the company’s second-largest winery and will become the home for its entire shipping operation, including its wine club. In addition, the facility will offer a covered patio for outdoor events and a 130-seat restaurant. All told, it will be the largest winery in the Houston area, according to Messina Hof.
“We have vetted a few other locations around Houston, but ultimately Harvest Green makes the most sense for us,” winemaker Paul Mitchell Bonarrigo tells CultureMap. One of our members, their children live in Harvest Green. He introduced me to the management team at Johnson Development. It became clear their vision of community, farm to table, green-centric, aligned with our core values.”
As it has with similar facilities in Bryan, Grapevine, and Fredericksburg, Messina Hof’s Houston-area winery will offer consumers insight into the wine-making process. Expect wine tastings, wine dinners, and harvest events such as a grape stomp. Yes, those grapes will be grown on site.
“I could see us having four to five acres of vineyard,” Bonarrigo says. “A lot of that will be associated with the winery. I think we’ll probably produce about 5,000 gallons [per year] there.”
The winery’s restaurant will also be a big component of its offerings. Bonarrigo describes it as more casual than the one at Messina Hof’s estate facility in Bryan, but its proximity to the Harvest Green farm maintained by local firm Loam Agronomics will ensure access to fresh local produce.
“The goal is to make a menu that really goes well with the wine selection,” Bonarrigo says. “My wife, Karen, is our food and wine expert. She does a lot of development in our food program.”
Bonarrigo describes these plans as “phase one” of Messina Hof’s Harvest Green facility. The company has already begun negotiations with Johnson Development for a potential phase two that would include an air-conditioned event facility that could hold 300 people. For now, those who want to have a wedding or other special event at the winery will have to make do with its 2,400-square-foot covered patio.
“It’s very exciting to move on to our next stage in our company,” Bonarrigo says. “We look forward to seeing what happens.”