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Thursday, May 2, 2013

Wine, Flowers and More Wine ... Fredericksburg, TX Road Trip in Spring

Pop! The first bottle of wine to be consumed spits its cork out. We pour our first glass, sigh and settle into our adorable rent house just off Llano street in Fredericksburg, Texas. 


We passed these Poppy Fields at Wildseed Farms on our way into town. 



Our first stop in this little German getaway is dinner at The Nest. The cozy house-converted restaurant has everything to offer from fresh fish shipped that day to rack of lamb. The atmosphere was delightful and comfortable, and the service was punctual but not bothersome. 

I ordered the salmon smothered in a rich garlic sauce with a side of sauteed spinach and roasted beets. The salmon was falling apart tender and cooked to perfection. The sides complimented it perfectly. And most importantly, it was piping hot when brought to the table. For those of you who know me, if it's not hot, I can't enjoy it. I know, first world problems, but nevertheless, important. 
Salmon, roasted beets
and wilted spinach

I also tried my friend's turnip mash potatoes. AMAZING. They were still the white fluffy old friends we are used to but with an added layer of flavor that sent the sophisticated side dish sailing to the top of my favorites. Both of my friends enjoyed their meal immensely, and as my third time to go to The Nest, I have yet to be disappointed. You must make this one of your stops when visiting!

The next morning we had a pile of things on our list to do—shopping, the Lavender Festival at Becker Vineyards, Hilmy Cellars for wine tasting, and the Music Festival. We started our day at 8 AM with the 20th annual Wildflower 5K run. It was such a great way to explore the sweet neighborhoods of Fredericksburg on foot. The sun hadn't yet warmed the day, so the weather was perfect. We got to see renovations new and old, cottages traditional and modern while sweating the wine out from the night before. I once heard that the secret to a good trip is to do the things you love to do at home. I love to jog, eat and drink coffee. Hence dragging my friends out of bed to run with me. 
antiquated cabin with central air!

Alas, after the race we headed to Sunset Grill. There isn't a reason to try any other breakfast place in town because this place was so incredible, although the Rathskeller  on Main is a close second. It was hard to order because it all looked so good. I almost ate the menu

I happily settled on the SeƱorita omelet with hatch chilies, pepper jack cheese, tomatoes, onions and a biscuit to keep things honest. It was perfectly spicy and so full of flavor. And my friend didn't finish her eggs benedict with smoked salmon, cream cheese, red onions, and capers topped with a warm poach egg, so I got to eat half. OMG, the salmon and cream cheese melted in my mouth along with that warm runny egg on top. 

After a long shower, another cup of coffee and a fresh change of clothes, the day was halfway over. No time for lunch, so we went straight to the shopping. If you haven't shopped in Fredericksburg you're missing out. It is not one of those small towns filled with kitschy or shabby chic stores that leave a tacky taste in your mouth. Beautiful furniture and clothing stores line Main Street.

Most furniture prices are totally doable, too. The pieces are unique and stunning at Red on Main Street. Mid-century modern pieces juxtapose timeless antiques and chairs that could rest in a museum as contemporary art. I've been looking for chandeliers for years and haven't found any that are worth a dime from my wallet. The chandeliers at Red were awesome for lack of better words (pictures below). 

A man making lavender oil
at the lavender festival
This travel piece has already gotten too long, so I will offer a photo essay about the rest of the trip. The only mishap from our trip was to the well-known hideaway 10 miles outside of town, the Hilltop Cafe. The place was run by twenty-somethings, service was slow and the food was just OK. I know there are so many other delicious places in town worth trying. 

All in all, this trip was a blast and so easy to get to and plan. We left Friday afternoon and were home Sunday afternoon. Considering all of the events going on that weekend, I didn't have to wait for a table or parking space. The crowds didn't seem too big either. I recommend! 
Visit Wildseed Farms



You've got to hike Enchanted Rock. It's another beautiful Texas treasure. 





Chandeliers at Red