Apparently wine is on my travel agendas as of late (or maybe just on my life agenda…). Anyways, my besties and I decided to do a weekend in Fredricksburg last month, which as you know is practically the Napa Valley of Texas (LOL – I’m kidding, y’all). I was pleasantly surprised by this small town because we had some pretty good wine and came out of the trip with some great stories (like that time we saw a parade float that said, “Make America Texas Again”). #TexasForever, people.
Have no fear – there are plenty of wineries to choose from on Highway 290, and we looked at a lot of them before making our reservations. We definitely enjoyed some more than others, so here are my two cents on the places you should check out!
It was Catty & Lauren’s first wine tasting ever, so I knew we needed to start off with a bang. We splurged for William Chris’ barrel tasting and had no regrets about it. After you arrive, you will walk around for short tour of the vineyard and then will venture into the cellars for the rest of the time. A barrel tasting is exactly what it sounds like – you will taste wine straight from the barrel it is currently being aged in! It’s one of the coolest ways you can learn about the wine-making process. My favorite wine of their selection was the Mourverde or as they called it, Texas’ answer to California’s Pinot Nior.
This one is definitely off the beaten path as far as 290 wineries go, but Hilmy is not one to be missed! They are a winery that goes for quality over quantity and it does not go unnoticed…because we all ended up buying a bottle or two. My personal favorite is their Malbec, but all of their whites were amazing as well (and that means more coming from a girl who loves her red wine).
The perks of being one of the largest vineyards in Fredricksburg means that they will have a wine for everyone. The best things about Grape Creek include (1) it’s on the 290 Wine Shuttle, (2) you can pick what wines you want to try, meaning all parties are pleased, and (3) you don’t need a reservation. They also have a huge outdoor area where you can hang out for the afternoon: just buy some snacks and a bottle of wine inside and you’re good to go for the rest of the day!
Okay, Now I’m Hungry…
Don’t hate me for saying this, but Fredricksburg definitely has better wine than they have food. Keep in mind, we have high standards here in Texas! Austin, Houston, and Dallas…all three have a killer food scene. Moral of the story, we found the selection here to be a little disappointing. That being said, I recommend if you’re staying in an Airbnb to grab a bottle of your favorite wine from the day and then cook a great meal at home! Have no fear – I still got you covered if you don’t want to cook.
It’s the definition of Texas: quesadillas, burgers, tacos, BBQ, and beer. I will say their build your own burger with the sourdough bun was pretty quality after a long day of frolicking through vineyards (JK – just sitting, drinking wine, and eating cheese). They have live country music every night, which is the perfect dinner vibe for this small Texas town.
Apparently this is the place to be in Fredricksburg. Anyone and everyone we talked to was heading there except us! We came for the country music and the dancing, but would have come for the steak if we knew about it sooner.
If you’re on the hunt for a good home-style breakfast or brunch, look no further. Their omelets are the bomb, but everything else looked amazing (seriously – we sat at the bar in the back and got to see every plate come out of the kitchen).
While we tried to eat here (like really, really tried), we ended up choosing to skip out because of the long wait. Like I said, the food scene isn’t the best, so the one great restaurant in town is always packed! However, Otto’s menu looked seriously amazing, and if you’re looking for a nice dinner spot, this would be the place!
This place is probably the cheapest quality cup of coffee I’ve had in awhile. Make sure to stop here during a morning of shopping on Main Street before you head out to the wineries for the afternoon!
Our Home Away From Home
Fredricksburg hotel options are limited, so most people stay in either a bed & breakfast or an Airbnb. We absolutely adored the place we stayed! The Bluebonnet Bungalow is close to Main Street (where EVERYTHING is) and we got to bike there every day! As far as Main Street goes, be sure to check out their amazing antique stores (I’m a weirdo and love hunting through that stuff) and their Christmas store. Seriously, it was Christmas in July – my happy place!
Fredricksburg was proof that small towns can be fun too! I’ll always be a city girl, but this town made us fall in love with Texas again.