State Fair of Texas

As a Texas native, it’s hard to even fathom that I’ve never been to the State Fair of Texas.  I know, my official Texas badge should be taken away.  But I made up for it this year by attending the State Fair of Texas and I’m recapping my experience and sharing it with y’all!

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The State Fair of Texas spans twenty-four days and was established in 1886.  This makes the State Fair of Texas the largest running fair in the nation and one of the largest in size. Each year they pick a theme that encompasses their mission of celebrating the history of Agriculture, Education and Community.  This year’s theme, “Celebrating Texas Innovation”, was woven into many of the exhibits and throughout the fair park.

Before you plan your trip to the State Fair of Texas here are a few basics that you need to know and a few tips after our first trip to the fair.

1.   Arrive early.  We noticed as the day went on and especially around 5pm the park really got crowded.  By arriving in the morning, it allowed us to explore most of the park with little to no lines or crowds.

2.  Park only in the State Fair of Texas official parking lots.  There will be official banners and signs directing you to all available lots.  As you drive in you will see people wearing vests and using flags to motion you into other parking lots.  Most of these lots appeared to be open fields, people’s homes or in front of businesses.  By parking in the official State Fair of Texas lots you lower the risks of car break-ins or even worse being towed.  The official parking lots also provide a free tram that takes you directly to the entrance gate.  We paid $15 to park.

3.  Swing by the ATM on your way to the Fair.  You will need cash to park and it also makes purchasing Coupons easier when you arrive in the park.

4.  Coupons are the Fairs “currency”.  The food vendors only accept coupons.  If your kids want to play any of the carnival games, you will need entirely different form of currency.  You will find coupon kiosks throughout the park that will gladly exchange your cash for coupons.

As the largest state fair, you can imagine navigating the park can be a little taxing.  At the end of the day we had walked close to 8 miles throughout the day.  Plan to wear comfortable shoes and take breaks in the shade when you can.

We did not attend the State Fair with children, so our takeaways may be different had we maybe attended with small children.  But here are my favorite highlights of the State Fair of Texas as a couples trip.

  1.  Food.  This has to be the number one item on the list.  Things I never thought could be hand battered and dipped in the frying pan were indeed a possibility at the fair.  From Chicken Fried Bacon to deep fried Oreos the food vendors had your wildest fried dreams covered.  Big Tex Choice Award winner, the Cotton Candy Taco was the first thing on my list we had to try.  With a waffle cone shaped like a taco shell, a fluffy pillow of cotton candy filled the inside and was garnished with your choice of marshmallow flavored fluff and cookie crumbles.  It was a sticky delicious mess and of course an Instagram photo dream come true.

2.  Agriculture.  If you have grown up in the city or maybe you’re just fairly removed from rural society, the farm to table concept may be new to you.  I felt like the fair did a wonderful job of providing multiple displays and exhibits throughout the fairgrounds that illustrated where your food comes from and the importance of agriculture.  The Agriculture education was presented in many different forms that appealed to all ages.

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3.  Art Exhibit.  This was one of our favorite stops and maybe the exhibit we stayed at the longest.  It was so wonderful to see all ages, from youth to adults, competing in a variety of art mediums.  We viewed photography, needlepoint, paintings, antiques and quilts, just to name a few.  Every entry was beautifully displayed and told a story.

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4.  Auto Show.  The State Fair of Texas is the only fair to include a full auto show.  Just think of any auto manufacturer name and they were there.   Auto displays that spanned from indoor displays to outdoor mega displays.  If you are in the market for a new vehicle this was a fun, hassle free, way to view all of the new cars coming out.

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There are a few must “see” and photo ops you don’t want to miss out on.

  1.  Big Tex.  At the main entrance you will find a 55-foot-tall statue named Big Tex.  He has become the cultural icon of the Fair since 1952 and he even talks!  This is the perfect spot for a group photo or the infamous selfie.
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Don’t miss your chance to get a picture with the “Neon” Big Tex too!

2.  Pig Races.  If you want to see the cutest thing on this planet go to the pig races.  Step back in time as you enter into a coliseum decorated like a scene from Wilbur the Pig in Charlotte’s Web.  And announcers who wore overalls and talked with the southern drawl most outsiders would think all Texans sound like.  It was a fun activity to watch and the crowds went wild over the pigs as they made their way around the track.

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3.  Butter Sculptures.  Have you ever seen a 1000 pounds of butter sculpted into the shape of a cowboy’s head?  I’m guessing the answer is mostly no.  But the state fair has you covered.  To put that size in perspective, it takes 21,200 gallons of milk to make 1000 pounds of butter.  Wow.

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4.  Wine tasting.  By now most of you probably know that this is one of my favorite subjects.  The fair offers a beautiful wine garden surrounded by tasting stations of some of Texas’s best wines.  They also have outdoor seating along with a stage for live music throughout the day.  We found this to be an excellent spot to take a break and relax from the passing crowds.

We have already marked our calendars for next years fair, and you should too.  Opening day has been set for September 27th, 2019.  See you at the State Fair of Texas, y’all.

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XX Jennifer

Lavender and Wine Festival

On the second Saturday in August, each year, you can enjoy the Lavender and Wine Festival hosted by Chappell Hill Lavender Farm and Windy Winery in Brenham, Texas.   A short drive from the Brazos Valley, we enjoyed a beautiful and scenic drive through Independence, Texas to the Lavender farms of Brenham.   There are several routes you could take, but we chose to drive past the Antique Rose Emporium on Farm to Market 50 and onto the farm.

This was my first year to attend the festival with my girlfriends and we had a wonderful time.  Although it was a little warm, we toughed it out and enjoyed the live music, refreshing lavender lemonade and a stroll through the lavender field where we clipped fresh lavender to take home.

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The Lavender Festival was kid friendly with a miniature horses, a petting zoo, and crafts the whole family would enjoy.  The best part about the festival is that it’s free to attend and park.  But watch your wallet when you browse through the vendor fair or step inside the Lavender Patch boutique where you will find oils, soaps, lotions, jams and really anything you can think of infused with fresh lavender from the farm.

A few takeaways that I’ll be sure to remember for next year…

1. Arrive early, if nothing else it will help with the heat.  As the day went on the crowds got larger and by the time we made it to Windy Winery it was so packed.

2.  Pack a cooler with ice water and Gatorade, like I said… it was hot and the lines were long.  It would have been nice to just run out to the car and grab a bottle of water.

3. Pack some snacks.  Although they advertised food, it was limited.  I’m hoping next year that they will have a few food truck options or expand on their food selections.

It was a wonderful day spent with my beautiful friends, we definitely will go back next year and bring a few more friends to join in on the fun.  Hope to see you there next year! xx-Jennifer

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Wayside Food Park

The Brazos Valley is quickly becoming a foodie’s paradise.  With new restaurants opening up, what seems like daily, there just aren’t enough days in the week to enjoy everything Bryan/College Station now has to offer… but I’m going to give it my best try!

It’s exciting to see new concepts come to the area and one that I’m really excited about is the new Wayside Food Park, located at 203 First Street in College Station’s historic Northgate district.  Northgate is most notably known for it’s vibrant nightlife scene inclusive of bars, pubs, food, live music and now home to Aggieland’s first food park.  Purchased in 1912, Texas A&M originally dedicated this land for the future development of shopping and businesses.  Although  Northgate was not established until 1972, the area is now a thriving spot for college students, visitors and families.

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What do you need to know before you go to the food park?

Adjacent to the Northside of campus, parking can be limited at Northgate.  Wayside has done an excellent job of educating customers on where they can and can not park.  When we visited, we found a great spot directly across the street in the Coyote Parking lot, but remember to bring cash for this lot, credit cards are not an option.  Further down the street there is paid parking with numbered spaces and of course the Northgate parking garage, but be prepared to walk a few blocks.

The food park is dog friendly.  So plan to bring your furry friend along, but make sure they are on a leash.  With this Texas heat you will also want to bring a dog bowl and Wayside will be happy to fill it up with water for your four legged friend.

Plan to stay awhile.  From giant Jenga and Connect 4, yard games and live music, Wayside Food Park is a great place to grab a beer, gourmet food and hangout with friends.   The covered pavilion and large seating area makes it inviting for guests to sit back, relax and stay awhile.

Probably the biggest problem we had once we toured the Food Park was actually deciding what to eat… every food truck smelled amazing and the menus left us drooling.  After hearing wonderful things about a new food truck in town that is dedicated to “Sweet and Savory Southern Snacks”, I was sold.  Our first stop was The Deaux Company food truck.  Husband and wife duo – Texas A&M grad, Garrett, and LSU grad, Sarah – cook up late night snacks all day long.

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Featuring three menu options, I just couldn’t say no to Fried Chicken and Waffles.  If they would have sold me a bucket of the chicken, I would have done it, it was that good.  Finding myself limited on belly space, I will be back to try out their other two menu items that I know will be equally satisfying to my curated southern pallet.

  1. Cajun Boudin hand-rolled in panko bread crumbs, deep fried and served with remoulade sauce. (Can we pause and just take that in for a moment? Yum.)
  2. Beignet Fritters, made-to-order and lightly dusted with powdered sugar. Y’all they are served in a waffle cone coated with your choice of chocolate sprinkles or white-chocolate cinnamon and sugar (Psst… tell them you want the Nutella topping… you’re welcome.)

Luckily I had brought along my friend Cait, who puts up with my blogger craziness, and generously agreed to share her grilled cheese from the BaconGate food truck.  I will say this went along nicely with my chicken and waffles, just in case you were wondering, it was a nice pairing.

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We tried the gourmet bacon grilled cheese and my little Texas soul was so happy when our lunch arrived in true Texas fashion – garnished with a Texas flag.  Beyond the Texas flag, the grilled cheese was exactly what I expected, delicious.  I will say that I would like to try “The Elvis” next time… Hawaiian bread, creamy peanut butter, sliced bananas and finished with candy bacon.

We were only able to try out food from two trucks during our visit, but we can’t wait to go back and try out the many other equally amazing food trucks that Wayside Food Park has to offer.  You can follow Wayside Food Park on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  Both The Deaux Company and BaconGate food trucks have Facebook and Instagram accounts, so give them follow and more importantly stop by and try out their food!

xx -Jennifer

Wayside Food Park Hours of Operation

Monday – Thursday 11 am – 8 pm

Friday 11 am – 9 pm

Saturday 11 am – 8 pm

Sunday 11 am – 3 pm

Southern Brunch

The Brazos Valley is quickly becoming the Southern Brunch capital of the World, y’all… I am seriously convinced of this!  With the continued growth of our community we have attracted a few new eateries that are making my gym membership quiver.

Sundays are for Jesus and brunch with my girls, (pause I’m making a T-shirt now with this quote).  This summer we have had a few new spots pop up that you need to add to your weekend brunch plans asap.  First on the list is Stella Southern Cafe.

A fun fact about the name of the restaurant, it was actually named after the owner Michael Lair’s 1995 Dodge Dakota club cab with a 5.2 liter V8 engine, Stella.  A part of every road trip adventure he took, Stella now lives on through the name of his southern cafe.

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Photo Credit: Clare Rowe

Walking into the restaurant you are immediately greeted by hosts who provide you with a menu while waiting in line to order your food.  Don’t worry it’s not a long wait, but you will be tempted by all of the great gift items and homemade jams as you make your way to the register.

I had a tough decision to make because everything on the menu just looked amazing.  I decided to go with a more traditional breakfast which included eggs, bacon, grits (with cheese of course) and I would be crazy not to try their homemade biscuits with mimosa jam.  I didn’t know that my favorite breakfast drink could be made into a jam, but they found a way!

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The overall dining experience was excellent.  The staff was warm and friends, much like the south.  My friends and I will definitely put the Stella Southern Cafe into our brunch rotation! xx-Jennifer

The Lake Walk Town Center: a hidden gem in Bryan

Joining our community in 2017, the Lake Walk Town Center in Bryan has created a wonderful retreat and gathering place for local residents and visitors.

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View from the 75 foot “Lookout” over the Lake Walk Town Center

Saturday mornings I enjoy my short walk to this newly created venue for sunrise yoga with SolYoga.  Feeling relaxed and fully renewed, I meet up with my girlfriends for a cup of Joe across the street at P.O.V. Coffee.  Sitting outside on the patio, I take in take in all the beauty the lake walk offers while catching up with friends.

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Photo Credit:  Lake Walk Town Center, SolYoga.

Tucked away before you enter into the Traditions Club & Community, the Lake Walk Town Center creates a family friendly environment offering you 10 different visitor experiences, 4 of which are completely free!

The Lake Walk is complete with a event lawn, water feature, a 75 foot tower perfect for overlooking the city or gazing at the stars.  Beyond the lake, The Stella Hotel adds another element unlike anything in the Bryan-College Station community.  The boutique hotel is perfect for a staycation, romantic getaway, or even a fun girls night out.  One of my favorite features of the hotel is the speakeasy inspired cocktail lounge, Hershel’s.  When I started my blog this was actually the location of our first onsite photo shoot.  Some of the best shots Shelby took were in the bathroom – yes I’m serious.

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Photo Credit:  Shelby Tiska Photography

From cocktail hour to poolside, The Stella Hotel pool cabanas and day passes are available, if you’re looking for a retreat like atmosphere to cool off this summer.

The Campfire Grill also featured inside The Stella Hotel provides guests with gourmet “farm to fork” meals and another outdoor seating area perfect for cozy conversations next to a campfire inspired fire pits.   I have not yet had the opportunity to stay at the hotel, but it is definitely on my staycation list of places to stay!

The Lake Walk not only provides special events, a beautiful hotel, coffee for days, but they have recently added a shopping experience with a local boutique, The Coterie.  The friendly staff and owner are always there to greet you and help you find your best style.  Full disclosure my wallet cringes a little every time I walk through the door because it’s impossible to walk out empty handed.

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Photo Credit:  Shelby Tiska Photography

This summer, on Friday nights, you can find me at the Lake Walk enjoying their summer concert series and food trucks with friends.  And if you’re looking for something to do during the week stop by The Local on Tuesday’s to explore the popup market featuring local vendors, food trucks and live music.

Here are a complete list of everything the Lake Walk Town Center has to offer, including links of all of the wonderful things to do around the Lake Walk and Stella Hotel!  I have enjoyed the Lake Walk and I hope you can plan your next staycation or visit to Bryan-College Station!  xx-Jennifer

  1. Paddle Boarding on the Lake – visit the Stella Hotel for rentals
  2. The Lookout, 75 ft tower overlooking the city
  3. Poolside Cabanas @ The Stella Hotel
  4. P.O.V Coffee on the Patio
  5. Saturday FREE Yoga by the Lake, 8 AM
  6. Hershel’s Bar @ The Stella Hotel
  7. The Local – popup market featuring local vendors, food trucks and live music
  8. Coterie Boutique
  9. Eats & Beats Summer Concert Series
  10. Campfire Grill

Top 6 Ice Cream Stops in Bryan-College Station

What better way to celebrate National Ice Cream month than to recap my top picks for America’s favorite summer treat.  The Brazos Valley isn’t short on a supply of sweet treats that help cool off even the hottest days of summer.  As you plan your summer vacations or need a quick sugar fix try out some of my favorite local Ice Cream spots in the Brazos Valley.  Next week I’ll share a few more Ice Cream spots that you don’t want to miss around the state and beyond the boarders of Texas!

1.  Blue Bell Ice Cream is a Texas staple and should be on everyone’s “must do” list while traveling through the state.  If you can’t stop by the Brenham factory for a tour, you can find this delicious treat at most grocers and in Downtown Bryan a the local Must Be Heaven Sandwich Shoppe.  Stepping back in time, treat the family to a hand dipped cone of Blue Bell Ice Cream and take a stroll down the historic sidewalks of Downtown Bryan.

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Photo Credit:  Must Be Heaven Sandwich Shoppe in Brenham, Texas                               

2.  Farmhouse Creamery  opened their doors to the Bryan-College Station community in 2016, bringing to south College Station a true taste delicious premium ice cream.  They offer 28 flavors of ice cream, including sugar free and gluten free options, the creamery brings a unique spin to ice cream right here in the Brazos Valley.

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Photo Credit:  Farmhouse Creamery Premium Ice Cream

3.  “Maybe a Cupcake will help?” – Jeff Martin, Founder of Smallcakes Cupcakes and Creamery, created this decadent treat that is just irresistible to any sweets lover.  A brand new location has opened in Bryan-College Station and it’s definitely a sugar shock in the making, you don’t want to miss out!

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Photo Credit:  Smallcakes Cupcakes and Creamery

4.  Napa Flats Wood-Fired Kitchen – Gelato 

Ok this isn’t really Ice Cream… but this rich and creamy Italian favorite seriously had to be on this list.  Made in house, you don’t want to skip dessert when dining at Napa Flats Wood-Fired Kitchen. (Psst order the Trio 8, you will thank me later.)

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Photo Credit:  Napa Flats Wood-Fired Kitchen                                                                                               

5.  Frios Gourmet Pops

A cousin of our favorite summer sweet treat ice cream… Popsicle are making a huge comeback, but in a gourmet way.  Are you planning a fun outdoor event or even a wedding? Frios Pops is mobile and ready to add a unique sweet treat to your next gathering.  Supporters of small businesses and growing local economies, Frios Gourmet Pops are your go to for fresh. frozen. fun.

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Photo Credit:  Frios Gourmet Pops – Aggieland                                                                                              

6.  Have you ever wanted to tryout a science experiment with your ice cream?  Y’all my ice cream isn’t around long enough for me to actually conduct any experiments… but that’s ok because SubZero Nitrogen Ice Cream has you covered.  The staff at SubZero use liquid nitrogen to hand mix your ice cream at freezing temps of 321 degrees Fahrenheit.  Don’t worry, the liquid nitrogen isn’t toxic and it does not have a taste or smell to it.

Bonus: SubZero loves education and they will take their show on the road, this would be a huge hit at a children’s party!

Next week I’ll share a few more Ice Cream spots that you don’t want to miss around the state and beyond the boarders of Texas! xx Jennifer

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Photo Credit:  SubZero Nitrogen Ice Cream                                                                                                    

 

Wine on the go!

I love supporting local businesses and seeing the Bryan/College Station community thrive through successful retailers, fine dining and attractions.  That’s why I am over the moon excited to announce my collaboration with Messina Hof Winery & Resort and Shelby Tiska Photography to present the newly released Messina Hof canned wine!

With Shelby Tiska’s amazing ability to capture and highlight food and beverage products through her stylized brand photography skills it was a no brainier to partner with Messina Hof Winery and Resort to feature their new canned wine for the summer on my blog.

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Y’all, your summer just got better with the refreshing taste of Messina Hof wine on the go!  As I’m planning all of my summer vacations and trips to the beach and pool, you can bet that Messina Hof wine in a can will be in my cooler!!

You can choose between two refreshing options of canned wine.  Each selection is sold in a four pack and you can purchase it at all three Messina Hof locations.  Click HERE to see a complete list of retailers!

 

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In addition to their new canned wine, Messina Hof Winery & Resort has a lot of great upcoming events.  My friends and I will be signing up for the Bryan Harvest Festival and good news you can too… use the Early Bird Promo Code PURPLEFEET for 15% off the Ultimate Pass Harvest 2018 Tickets!!  Hurry this code expires 6/15!

This week I also joined the Messina Hof Winery & Resort Wine Club!  I pick up my first selection this week and I can’t wait to also restock my fridge with canned wine too.

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If you’re looking to change things up during the week, the Wine Bar at Messina Hof Estate Winery & Resort in Bryan has great Happy Hour  specials each night of the week!  Monday-Thursday they have a special feature of $5 select glasses and Wine on Tap from 4 PM to 7 PM.  Take a peak at the awesome weekly specials by the day!

Mixology Monday  $5 cocktails from 4 PM to 9PM

Tap Tuesday  $5 glasses of Wine on Tap and 10% off growler fills (growler purchased separately).

Sips and Sweets Wednesday  Sip three of Messina Hof’s award winning wines expertly paired with two deliciously sweet desserts, each treat crafted by the Vintage House Restaurant Chef.  

Aggie Night Thursday $5 glasses of wine and 1 free taste of one of our Aggie Network wines by showing your student or faculty ID or Aggie ring.

Friday Flights  20% off any themed flight on the menu.

 

xx Jennifer

Girlfriends Guide… Fredericksburg, TX (Part 3)

Day 3 of our girlfriend getaway in the Texas Hill Country didn’t lack in activities… we dedicated Sunday to last minute shopping and a stroll down main street, peeking in windows and grabbing last minute homemade baked goods from a church bake sale stand.  (And yes I ate the baked goods before even getting back to the car!)

We started the morning with the idea of just grabbing a quick cup of coffee and pastries at local bakery… but quickly changed our minds when we discovered the reviews on yelp for a local restaurant, Sunset Grill.

Weekend Guide to Fredericksburg, TX

The parking was a challenge but our timing was better… the wait was organized because of their text messaging system which allowed you to sit outside and enjoy the beautiful morning and relax.  We were seated almost immediately and our table was next to a Disney style porthole window creating a “magical” dining experience.

We could barely carry on a conversation, not because it was loud… but because we envied every table around us as their breakfast was brought to their tables. Although I opted for a traditional breakfast, with biscuits I could eat for days, my top picks that you should try are the French Toast and Eggs Benedict.  I’m adding it to our list for the next trip!

Sunset Grill

With our stomachs full, we needed any excuse to get outside and walk off the calories.  So we decided to hit up main street and visit a few of our favorite stores.  Everyone knows that I go a little crazy decorating for Christmas and if I could get away with it, I would leave it up year round.  So naturally we had to visit the Christmas Store.

I love looking at the new Christopher Radko Ornaments and I was on the hunt for one very special ornament for my tree this year… the Christmas Pickle.  There are many stories that are told about hanging a pickle on your tree.  I’ve heard it brings good luck to your family and I’ve also heard that the first person to find it on the tree gets to open an extra present.  So I figured either way it would be a solid purchase.

Christmas Store

If you’re looking to squeeze in a few more wineries on your trip to Fredericksburg, main street actually has a few wineries that you might have missed out on.  Fat Ass Ranch and Winery has a tasting room conveniently located next to the Christmas Store and if nothing else you just need to experience it because of the name…and the frozen sangria.

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I love cooking, it’s another creative space for me and actually a stress reliever believe it or not.  So stopping at the Kitchen store, Der Kuchen Laden, was a must on our list before we left town.  A fun fact about the Der Kuchen Laden, is it’s historical past as a hospital.  Walking inside you wouldn’t have known it was a hospital because it is wall to wall kitchen gadget must haves. They had kitchen gadgets I didn’t even know existed… from Le Creuset cookware to every sugar cookie cutter on this planet, I was in heaven.  And if you are craving java, here’s a little secret, they have a coffee house in the back of the store to grab a quick cup while you are shopping.

I found a few treasures that I couldn’t live with out, one in particular made my day.  I have a small obsession with cocktail napkins and I found the cutest Cowboys and Indians napkins that I just couldn’t leave with out purchasing.

Kitchen Store

If you have a sweet tooth, like I do, then you don’t have to walk very far to find sweet treats of all kinds.  The Lone Star Candy Bar had everything you could think of including a chocolate covered jalapeno, yikes!  And don’t be afraid to be a kid and take your picture with the life size M&M candy out front while you enjoy your hand dipped ice cream.

Fredericksburg Fudge is also a must in the sweets department.  They have everything under the sun when it comes to fudge and it will leave you on a sugar high for days.

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Another great winery, who has a tasting room on main, is Grape Creek Vineyards.  On our first day in Fredericksburg we actually went out to the vineyard on HWY 290, but we only stayed for a glass of wine.  If we had done a little more research we could have just enjoyed a glass downtown and maybe avoided some of the crowds!

Grape Creek Vineyards on Main

As we left Main Street in “Olaf”, our jazzy mini van, we were already planning our next vacation to the Texas Hill Country in Fredericksburg, Texas.  It was exactly what we needed, a mini girlfriend getaway.  We can’t wait to plan another trip this Fall to enjoy the German heritage festivities and hopefully a little Christmas shopping too!

xx-Jennifer

The Potter’s Cottage

The three days of jam-packed Texas Hill Country fun wouldn’t have been the same had we not chosen to VRBO (Vacation Rental by Owner).  True confession, I have always been a little skeptical about staying at a “strangers” house and truth be told I envisioned it as a opening line to a horror film (you know, completely normal, rational thoughts.  Insert eye roll here.)  But that couldn’t be further from the truth, in fact, our VRBO experience was true bliss and it was the icing on the cake for our Texas Hill Country, Fredericksburg girlfriend getaway.

We chose The Potter’s Cottage because of it’s proximity to main street and the charm that the property offered, we just couldn’t resist.  The wooden privacy fence that lined the front of the home, the gravel drive way and elegant walk to the front door created a atmosphere that you where coming home to your very own secluded cottage in the middle of the Texas Hill Country.

Potters Cottage

We walked through the front door into a cozy living room where, little did we know, that we would spend each night in our pjs, having a glass of wine, listening to music together as we just enjoyed life and endless laughter.

Each morning we enjoyed the fresh fruit and coffee that the owner had generously provided as we got ready to experience Fredericksburg.  And y’all, I’m am kicking myself for not snapping pics of the bathroom because the cast iron teal bathtub and soft pink bead board ceiling was an unexpected element that was definitely picture worthy.

The property also offered two out door seating areas, giving you an option to rock your worries away on the front porch or relax on the back porch over a glass of wine and maybe even grill out if you were feeling adventurous!

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One of my favorite things about the cottage was all of the pottery and art that adorned each room of the cottage.  From the windmill to cacti to the giant oak trees hugging the cottage, it was difficult to pack up Sunday evening to drive back to reality.

Although we spent most of our days away from the cottage and out enjoying the beautiful Spring weather, ending each day at The Potter’s Cottage was wonderful and it helped to create lasting memories for three girlfriends during their Texas Hill Country getaway.  We can’t wait to make another trip to The Potter’s Cottage in Fredericksburg, Texas!

xx-Jennifer

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Girlfriends Guide… Fredericksburg, TX (Day 2)

Fredericksburg Day 2!  Y’all it was, yes, another wonderful day in the Texas Hill Country.  Ok pause, if you missed Day 1… stop and click here to read all of the fun we had on the drive to Fredericksburg and our big night in Luckenbach, TX.

We couldn’t have asked for better weather for our girls weekend in the Texas Hill Country.  With clear blue skies and rolling hills on the horizon, the day was picture perfect for a Saturday packed with wine tours and a lazy afternoon patio hopping.  Y’all I could seriously get use to the Texas Hill Country life… Let’s just say Monday back in the office after this girls weekend was a struggle.

Weekend Guide to Fredericksburg, TX

We kicked off our day on Main Street at the Old German Bakery and Restaurant.  The pictures really don’t do the pastries justice.  The good ole saying “your eyes are bigger than your stomach” rang true as soon as we walked through the doors of the bakery.  Not only did we order food that barely fit on the table, we had do grab sausage wraps and pastries to go.  Our waitress thought we were nuts, but totally worth the carb overload.  The must haves for this dinning experience were the waffle (only a 1/2), the potato and German pancakes.

Old German Bakery & Restaurant

Our carb overload didn’t slow us down one bit, we called Uber and made our way to William Chris Vineyards in Hye, Texas…just outside of Fredericksburg.  And yes, I said UBER.  Just as a side note, Uber has expanded into Fredericksburg.  They began this December and we used the heck out of the app over the weekend.  I will say that Uber was really great for in town requests, the farther we got away from town the more challenging it was to actually get a ride.  Next time we plan to use our friend Rex at the 19th hole Wine Tours , he actually saved us when Uber stranded us at William Chris Winery.

Ok ya’ll back to the important topic…wine.  William Chris Vineyards was picture perfect and a great way to kick off our wine tour.  The tasting room was divided by six bars where guests were paired with their William Chris customer experience representative to taste each wine.  A list of wines were provided to you for the tasting along with a small bowl of almonds, with a little bit of kick, to cleanse your pallet between tasting the wine.  After our delightful tasting, we enjoyed sitting out on the lawn, people watching, and listening to live music.  Quick tip…they take their reservations very seriously, so please make sure and go to their website to register before just showing up for a tasting!

William Chris Winery

William Chris Vineyard (10352 U.S. Highway 290, Hye, TX 78635).                                   Bluebonnet Photo Credit: William Chris Vineyard website.

After hitching a ride with our new friend Rex at 19th hole Wine Tours, we headed over to Kuhlman Cellars… and I hate to be biased y’all, but this was by far my favorite tour.  What made the experience for me, at Kuhlman Cellars, was the outstanding customer service and attention to detail.  Not only was the atmosphere amazing, the staff was beyond knowledgeable about their product.  I really enjoy learning about wine, and more specifically how it pairs with food.  I think it’s great to hear where the grape comes from and how it grows, but what I really want to know is … “does this go with steak and potatoes?”  Kulhman Cellars did just that, they provided gourmet bite size bundles of flavor that paired with each wine.  Our tasting guide was excellent in explaining how the flavors of the wine would change in each bite of our food.  If you do nothing else please stop by and buy a jar of their herbed almonds, I could eat these by the truck load.

After a great experience in the tasting room we decided to test out the porch where we fell in love with their orange tabby cat and the cozy patio furniture.   I recommend also making a reservation at Kulhman Cellars, unless you just plan to just buy a glass of wine and enjoy the patio experience.

Kuhlman Tasting

18421 E US 290
Stonewall, TX

Keeping up with our patio hopping theme for the day, we made our way back into town to sip Rose at Lincoln Street Wine Market.   We indulged in an afternoon snack, inclusive of a custom gourmet cheese tray and margarita pizza.  Live music and the faint smell of cigars filled the patio as we relaxed, laughed and simply enjoyed life in the slow lane.

Lincoln Street

Y’all, don’t let our jam packed day fool you, the best part about our vacation were the afternoon naps to recharge for each evening.  After a break and some much needed relaxing time we felt renewed and ready to take on the night!  We found ourselves at The Treaty House, known for their cocktails and shareable dishes.

The food was amazing and the atmosphere almost topped that with a piano playing in the background and vocalist singing his little heart out.  The Treaty House was a great experience and a good place to hangout for the evening with no pressure to leave.  PS y’all, get the crab mac and cheese … your stomach will thank you later.

Treaty House

Day 2 complete!  When planning your Texas Hill Country vacation keep in mind that you will need reservations at the wineries and at the higher end restaurants.  Also consider your transportation… ok putting my “mom hat” on here, please utilize Uber or local businesses like Rex’s 19th hole Wine Tours for safe transportation.  Also take naps, it’s ok to take naps on vacations, in fact it’s highly encouraged.

Y’all, stay tuned for a recap of Day 3, full of shopping and more food!  I will also tell you how to fit in a few more wineries when you are short on time!

xx -Jennifer