Forget fast food when you come to Texas Hill Country. The German influence in Fredericksburg results in plenty of classic German dishes like wiener schnitzel at restaurants throughout the town. Upscale Southwestern cuisine makes its presence known as well, highlighting dishes from cultures across the South. It is wine country after all, so that means wine bars, too, often offering bottles from local vineyards. Wine lists overall include a few standouts from Texas, but are big on California and other international wine regions.
Please note that prices, hours of operation and wine availability can often change. We recommend that you call ahead before you go.
203 E. San Antonio St.
Fredericksburg, TX 78624
Telephone: (830) 997-1585
Open: Fri-Sat, 11-2; Mon-Sat, 5-9
Cost: Entrées, $10 to $49
What exactly is Nouvau Texas cuisine? This restaurant may be the place to define it. Industry veteran Dawn Savanh opened August E's at the end of 2004. Everything about it is savvy, from the rugged elegance of the decor to the comforting yet creative menu that emphasizes steak and seafood. Locals and tourists alike come for talented chef-owner Leu Savanh's signature dish, Saigon spring rolls. The restaurant recently moved from its previous location in a 150-year-old log cabin to a more modern space downtown. There, the owners were able to expand the list from under 50 to more than 200, covering a little of everything from around the world.
Austin's at Rose Hill Manor has a country-inn atmosphere.
Austin's at Rose Hill Manor
2614 Upper Albert Road
Stonewall, TX 78671
Telephone: (830) 644-2247; (877) 767-3445
Open: Wed-Sat, seating at 7
Cost: Four-course prix fixe, $40
Eating on the enclosed veranda of this inn is like dining at a friend's house—that is, if your friend spent time at the Texas Culinary Institute and Mirabelle Restaurant in Austin. The combination of chef Joseph Bannister and unhurried country-inn atmosphere makes Austin's appealing. The seasonal menu has a French influence, and each plate is carefully crafted. The wine menu is a dependable selection of 180 wines, strong on Texas, California and Italy.
Cozy chairs await in the wine bar area of Lincoln Street Wine Market.
Lincoln Street Wine Market
111 S. Lincoln St.
Fredericksburg, TX 78624
Telephone: (830) 997-8463
Open: Tue-Thu, 9-9; Fri-Sat, 11-midnight; Sun-Mon, 1-9
Cost: Small plates, $9
This wine bar is a hangout worthy of Sonoma or Napa and a unique place to enjoy a glass of wine. The atmosphere is laid-back, a bit like a funky college cafe, with mismatched lounge chairs and couches. There's a large patio outside with tables and a fireplace to gather around. There's no wine menu, just shelves of wine decorating the room; it's an eclectic collection from around the world, with just a few local wines. Customers pick out a bottle, a server opens and pours it, and the fee is determined by the percentage of the bottle consumed, to the nearest fourth. There is a menu of small plates—cheeses, bread, cured meats, pâtés, sandwiches—to enjoy with the wine and even a selection of cigars.
Navajo Grill serves dishes inspired by cuisines from all across the South.
803 E. Main St.
Fredericksburg, TX 78624
Telephone: (830) 990-8289
Open: Sun-Thu, 5:30-9; Fri-Sat, 5:30-10
Cost: Entrées, $18 to $30
Situated in a modern bungalow near the downtown area, Navajo Grill has an eclectic menu influenced by cuisines across the South, from Louisiana to New Mexico. A typical entrée is grilled Hill Country quail stuffed with arugula, Yukon gold and Hairston Farms potato salad, and served with a Port-Balsamic glaze. The flavors are bold, while the dishes can be overly complicated, the kitchen is generally successful. The dining room is an open, unpretentiously-stylish space with gas lamps. The wine list is limited to 50 selections from around the world, including Texas and Chile.
The Driskill Grill holds a Wine Spectator Best of Award of Excellence.
The Driskill Grill
604 Brazos St.
Austin, TX 78701
Telephone: (512) 319-7162
Open: Dining Room, Tue-Sat, 5:30-10; Bar, Sun-Thu, noon-midnight; Fri-Sat, noon-2am
Cost: Entrées, $22 to $39
A highlight of the Austin dining scene, the Driskill Grill, housed in the historic Driskill Hotel, has a Wine Spectator Best of Award of Excellence for its wine list. The wine list, strong on selections from California, France and Italy, works well with the contemporary American cuisine by chef Jonathan Gelman. It has an inventory of 4,000 wines and more than 500 selections, available in both the dining room and the bar.
For other Wine Spectator restaurant award winners in Austin, see the Restaurant Search.
Passionate about wine? Wine Spectator magazine is looking for an enthusiastic copy editor in the New York office.
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