Fredericksburg Getaway 

Dan’s parent’s recently built a place in Fredericksburg, which is affectionally termed “The Cabin”. We’ve been out several times over the past few months and a few weeks ago, they lent it to us for a weekend friend getaway (THANKS!). It was so refreshing to hang out on the deck, drinking beers, away from the big city. There ended up being 10 of us, but through the miracle of air mattresses, we made it work! I was slightly intimidated to play host to that big of a group, but they are the sweetest and it actually ended up being a breeze. (I did forget to bring the nice camera, so the pictures aren’t stellar!)

Friday night, Dan grilled up some burgers and corn, and we had this lemony salad on the side. After we ate, we lounged around, star gazing and roasting marshmallows for some s’mores. And a short game of Quelf, which is always hilarious.
For Saturday morning breakfast, we cooked bacon breakfast tacos, which are a staple at the Witcher residence. We had to fuel up for a day at the wineries! Texas actually has the 2nd largest wine region outside of Northern California, and over the last few years it’s grown even more! Every time we visit Fredericksburg, it feels like a new winery has opened. Since we had so many people, I tried to stick with places where we could make reservations. The popular spots can get super crowded on nice weekends, so this was helpful.
We started at Pedernales Cellars, mostly for the amazing views! It’s not my favorite wine and on the pricier end, but the setting is beautiful. They have a nice patio to picnic on, also!
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However, we moved on to Kuhlman’s Cellars because it’s quickly becoming a favorite. I love all of their wines and they are reasonably priced (for the area… I splurge a bit when in wine country, compared to my typical $12 Kroger bottles). They were totally booked up by the time I tried to make a reservation (see?! book ahead!) but we were able to grab a couple  bottles and enjoy their deck as we ate lunch. I packed this delicious salad in advance, and it was surprisingly portable and actually perfect picnic food.  I did add chicken (because Dan refuses to eat a meal without meat) and had him grill it up the night before while he was working on the burgers. Everyone loved it, and it was so easy (although there are one million ingredients). All the recipes on her blog are on point.
Next up was Calais Winery, which was definitely the best tasting of the trip, and actually, ever in Fredericksburg. It’s basically a bunker in a field, so don’t come expecting hill country views, but the knowledge passed onto us was thorough and fascinating. It’s owned by a young, French guy who is making his mark on the Texas wine scene by using only Texas grapes with French oak barrels. He was the one leading the tasting, and we asked so many questions that he was happy to answer.
We ended at Lewis Wines, which is another one of the few who only use Texas grapes. We sat out on a patio, surrounded by vines and it was the perfect last stop.
We spent the next few hours playing outside like a bunch of kids. We played corn hole, frisbeer (Dan’s new favorite ever since the UT tailgate), and beer pong may have happened. Then we wrangled everyone up and headed into Fredericksburg for dinner at Fredericksburg Herb Farm.
On Sunday, we drove out to Alamo Springs, which has my absolute favorite burger. The drive is beautiful and I love seeing old German-style homes from when the area was founded.

For previous Fredericksburg trips, see here and here.

Easter Weekend 2016

Per usual, Dan and I were all over the place for the holiday! Luckily, we both had Good Friday off work and headed straight out to Fredericksburg to stay in the cabin with Dan’s immediate family. Got to love a road trip with bluebonnets and indian paintbrushes framing the pavement.

Friday was spent enjoying wine, playing with the kiddos, and listening to music at Luckenbach. We did wine tasting at 2 of the newer Wineries on the 290 block- Kuhlmans (which included a food pairing!) and Barons Creek. Both were excellent. And hanging out at Luckenbach has got to be one of the most relaxing & fun things in Texas- the picker’s circle is always a treat! The last time Dan & I were there, they even let him join in for a song 🙂 After stuffing my face with my absolute favorite burger at Alamo Springs, we ended the night with s’mores, which was just perfect. Even though Dan got marshmallows all up in his beard.

Saturday, we hung out on a boat on Town Lake (Lady Bird Lake?) in Austin with some of my college friends. It started out pretty overcast, but the sun came up and it ended up being a knock out day. Gah, my love for Austin will never fade. Seriously.

Sunday was spent in Waco celebrating Easter with Dan’s extended family- made for a huge crew at church that morning. Lots of food, egg hunting, bluebonnets, and cacarones (AKA lots of confetti stuck in your hair and shirt).

Memorial Day Weekend in the Hill Country

After a bridal shower in Houston, we were off for Memorial Day weekend! Barley was clearly stoked.


We got in fairly late Saturday night and met up with Dan’s parents at Cultures Bar. Pretty typical bar/grill with a good beer selection and ice cold mugs. Bonus points for icy mugs. Dan needed a cold one after how intensely he had to concentrate, driving through all the rain! Dan’s mom had made dinner reservations at The Nest, which was just divine. It’s in an adorable old home, a few blocks off Main Street with the perfect amount of lighting and the most affable servers. We had a French grandma who was a hoot! Not to mention the quality of the food, which all of us agreed was top notch. Dan and I both had seafood (scallops and shrimp) while his Dad had the filet and his mom tried the quail. We finished the night with a chocolate martini, because when you’re with Ann, chocolate is a requirement 🙂

We stopped by House Wine on the way back to the hotel and they let Barley come in and hang out. He loved it, of course.

  

Sunday morning, the sun came out and we were all surprised at what a beautiful day it was! Luckily, El Milagro has a charming patio with a fountain where we ate breakfast and enjoyed the weather. Note: only 1 breakfast taco is necessary. Barley mostly enjoyed chasing the birds and debating drinking the fountain water.

Later on, we met up with some of my best friends from home for lunch at Fredericksburg Herb Farm in their Farm Haus Bistro. The cutest, with a big garden in front! I was also shocked at how affordable it was too! The weekend was definitely full of good food at new places. You can stay in the most precious cottages on the farm too. Maybe next time 🙂

      

Afterwards, we just had to hit up some wineries… because when in Fredericksburg this is a must. First up was Hilmy Cellars. I had been wanting to go back because of the good wine, but mostly for the cute wine dogs 🙂 No sighting of them that day, but JB made friends with the rooster out on their gorgeous patio and we had a guinea sighting! A view of vineyards makes for excellent scenery.


    

Then we were on to Grape Creek to meet back up with Dan’s rents. They have been wine club members there for a while and I have to agree that it’s the most beautiful winery in Fredericksburg. Best to just buy a bottle (or 2) and sit and enjoy. The live music wasn’t too shabby either!

Barley’s face!! Derp.

        

We headed on to Johnson City that evening and had dinner at Pecan Street Brewing. Not that there are many other options in the small town, birthplace of LBJ with a population of 1,700. We were seated in the front and scarfed down our brick oven pizza. Then, I saw a sign in the back pointing to games & dancing! Through the door it was a totally different restaurant. Garage doors pulled up to let in the warm air, a big band playing country classics, and locals two-stepping across the dance floor. They also had a huge loft with pool tables, shuffleboard, and folding chairs galore. Even though the boys got fairly competitive at the shuffleboard table, it was a blast. Dan even swept me around the room while they played the last song of the night and it was the best. Just have to get a few beers in him to get him dancing 😉


The next morning we visited some re-sale/vintage shops where Joanna Gaines gets some of the things she uses on Fixer Upper! They were pretty awesome and I could definitely see the potential  of a lot of the pieces. My favorite was a wooden trough, but it was $300, which was a little expensive for a centerpiece. Dan’s mom was able to find some awesome doors to use as a countertop on their kitchen island, and gorgeous sliding barn doors! Successful trip for them!