WHERE TO GO AND WHAT TO DO IN AND AROUND THIS MOST POPULAR HILL COUNTRY TOWN
What is new to say about a place I’ve been to a thousand times?
You might be surprised. With each new visit, there are more wonderful places to
discover. As the author of several guidebooks and countless magazine features on
Fredericksburg and the Hill Country, I am often asked for advice about what to see and do in Fredericksburg. So I’ve compiled a “favorite Fredericksburg” list for this fall.
Der Lindenbaum — The Linden Tree, located in a historic limestone building; this sunshiny little spot on Main Street offers authentic German cuisine. Order the cucumber salad and the Wiener schnitzel and save room for dessert. 312 E. Main St. (830) 997-9126.
The Farm Haus Bistro at Fredericksburg Herb Farm — This fine restaurant (with a separate bar) features the fresh cuisine of a talented young chef who often changes his menu to reflect the season. Set in an 1800s rock house just four blocks from Main Street, the restaurant is just one of the charms of this little herb farm with a retail space, a fabulous spa and fresh and inviting overnight guest cottages. 405 Whitney St. 830-997-8615.
Otto’s German Bistro — Otto’s is an upscale bistro serving Germanic cuisine in a convivial setting. The chefs use only quality local meat and produce as well as the finest organic and sustainable ingredients available. They also serve classically inspired cocktails, craft beers and fine wines. Open daily, Otto’s stays open late and also offers Sunday brunch. 316 E. Austin. 830-307-3336.
August E’s — Since 2004, August E’s has delighted guests with “nouveau Texas cuisine,” as well as steaks, sushi, fresh fish and more, along with an award-winning wine book. Voted “Zagat’s” highest-rated restaurant in the Hill Country and AAA three-diamond award member, August E’s enjoys an upscale casual atmosphere enhanced by soothing background music and contemporary art. 203 E. San Antonio. 830-997-1585.
Vaudeville on Main Bistro and Supper Club — Vaudeville is a one-of-a-kind restaurant and retail experience with a spacious showroom, gallery, bistro-style café and special evening Supper Club meals. Upstairs, enjoy home furnishings, decor accessories and contemporary giftware; below street level shop for cooking gadgets and gourmet treats, and enjoy good eats for lunch or supper in the Bistro, which features daily lunch specials, freshly baked pastries and specialty meats and cheeses and boasts an extensive wine and beer menu. Vaudeville’s courtyard is devoted to The Supper Club, home to the new “V Supper Club” offering a three-course prix fixe menu on Monday nights, a four-course prix fixe menu on Friday and Saturday nights and Sunday brunch. Closed Tuesdays. 230 E. Main. 830-992-3234.
Carol Hicks Bolton Antiquities is an eclectic, interesting store that features the largest selections of antiques and antique accessories in town. For over 25 years, this shop has offered attractive and funky French and European antiques and has been featured in national magazines. 301 S. Lincoln. 830-997-5551.
Dogologie carries “all things dog!” With delightful and unique high-quality products for dogs, you and your pooch will love this place. 148 E. Main St., Suite B. 830-997-5855.
InSight Gallery is a large, gleaming art gallery with works by some of the finest painters and sculptors living and working today in landscape, figurative, impressionistic, still life, wildlife and Western art. Whether you are drawn to the masterful work of Mian Situ, the contemporary cowboy paintings of Bill Anton or the powerful works of Roy Andersen, you’re sure to find something to capture your imagination here. Closed Mondays. 214 W. Main St. 830-997-9920.
Settlers Crossing — Travel & Leisure called it “One of America’s Top10 Bed and Breakfast” inns. I call this serene 35-acre property dotted with Pennsylvania Dutch-style stand-alone cottages one of my favorite places to stay. Just 7 miles outside of Fredericksburg on the road to Luckenbach. Ranch Road 1376 at Settler’s Crossing Rd. 800-874-1020.
Trois Estate at Enchanted Rock — The Trois Estate is a manifestation of thought, prayer and belief. It is a hand-built artistic village in an Old World European style inspired by San Miguel de Allende. Spend the night in one of the Bed & Breakfast suites, and then greet the morning with a homemade breakfast before taking a hike at Enchanted Rock. In the evening, sip wine on a rooftop terrace while watching the sunset. This is an unforgettable place. 300 Trois Lane (off Hwy 16 across from Enchanted Rock). 830-685-3415.
The Hangar Hotel — This stylish aviation-themed Hangar Hotel is a unique hotel designed with an exterior appearance of a WWII hangar of the 1940s. Gleaming with fine woods, granite, custom carpet and tile and stylish furnishings, the Hangar Hotel is a fashionable little hotel for adults, with décor that features airplane memorabilia, model planes, USO history and the romance of the 1940s. 155 Airport Rd. 830-997-9990.
Austin Street Retreat — Tucked away just a block off Main Street, this little compound of four stylish historic Sunday-haus-style cottages has been a favorite of mine for decades. Book El Jefe, Eli’s, Kristin’s or Annie’s Cabin for a truly romantic retreat or Maria’s cottage for a family stay. 408 W Austin St. 866-427-8374.
Wildseed Farms, the nation’s largest working wildflower farm, opens its doors seven days a week for visitors to enjoy the seasonally blooming fields, a gift shop and one of the largest plant nurseries in Central Texas. After shopping, visit the Brew-Bonnet Biergarten and sip a cold brew. 100 Legacy Drive 7 miles east of town on Hwy 290 830-990-8080.
Festivals and Seasonal Events
Put on your lederhosen and enjoy a real
German-style Oktoberfest, Sept. 30 – Oct. 2.
Check out the Texas Mesquite Arts Festival
Fredericksburg, Oct. 7-9.
Eat your heart out at the Fredericksburg Food & Wine
Festival, Oct. 22.
Gear up for the holidays during Chamber Light Night
Christmas Parade and Afterglow celebrations, Dec. 2.
Be a nosy neighbor and see the gorgeous houses on the
59th Annual Holiday Home Tour on Dec. 3.
Wine & Winery Stops
Becker Vineyards — Located in the Texas Hill Country between Fredericksburg and Stonewall, Becker Vineyards’ tasting room is set in a 19th-century German stone barn reproduction surrounded by lavender fields. Featured in Wine Spectator and Food & Wine magazines, Becker Vineyards’ wine has even been served in the White House. Becker is open for tastings, winery/cellar tours, wine gift purchases, wine club and picnicking. Relax on the veranda during the spring and summer or by the hearth of an open fire during the winter in Becker’s Tasting Room, and visit during the annual Lavender Festival in spring (late April/early May). Hwy. 290 East /464 Becker Farms Rd., Stonewall, TX. 830-644-2681.
Lincoln Street Wine Market — Fredericksburg’s oldest and best wine and cigar bar with an enchanting patio and live music on the weekends, Lincoln Street offers the finest in wine, cigars, cheese, bread, olives and atmosphere. 111 S. Lincoln St. 830-997-8463.
Chocolat (Quintessential Chocolates) specializes in hand-crafted liquid liquor- and wine- filled chocolates and is the sole American manufacturer of this European method of making chocolates that dates back almost two centuries. With more than 27 years in business, the professional chocolatiers also make silk fudge, truffles, Colettes, barks, caramels and much more. Stop by for a sample. 251 W. Main St. 830-990-9382.
Enchanted Rock State Natural Area – A National Treasure, Enchanted Rock is a massive pink granite batholith creating a giant dome in the Hill Country outside of Fredericksburg. Climb the ancient dome for amazing Hill Country views. But there’s more at Enchanted Rock State Natural Area than just the dome. You can hike, backpack, camp, rock climb, picnic, bird watch, study nature, geocache and stargaze. Located 18 miles outside town. 830-685-3636.
National Museum of the Pacific War stands adjacent to the boyhood home of Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, who served as CinCPAC, Commander in Chief, United States Pacific Fleet, during World War II. Here, visitors can enjoy the 6-acre Museum Complex and immerse themselves in Pacific War history and American and Japanese culture of that time and enjoy heartfelt tributes to the heroes of the Pacific theater. A fabulous state-of-the-art museum, this is a must-stop for families. 340 E. Main Street. 830-997-8600.
BY JANIS TURK