Halfway between Houston and Austin lies a tasty secret. Brenham, affectionately known for many things starting with the letter B, has long been thought of a day-trip destination to see bluebonnets or to get a scoop of Blue Bell ice cream. These days, many more are finding its rolling hills the perfect backdrop for delicious food and wine.
Brenham is making a name for itself in the wine industry with delightful wineries that dot the countryside surrounding Brenham in all four directions. Award-winning wines made from Texas grapes, comfortable tasting decks overlooking the green rolling hills, and the sound of nature in the background – this is what makes a wine tour around Brenham so special.
Unique flavors like prickly pear and jalapeno, plus long-time favorites like Blanc du Bois and Cabernet, make for an unforgettable wine tour. Saddlehorn Winery is open daily, while Texas Star, Windy and Pleasant Hill Wineries are open on weekends. In the summer, the latter two even offer guests the fun opportunity to stomp grapes, just like Lucy and Ethel!
Visitors and locals happily find soup & sandwiches with mile-high meringue pies for dessert at Must Be Heaven, and exquisite flavors blended together in charmingly named menu items at Funky Art Café (and yes, they actually do have funky art). Nowhere else will you find a restaurant like Dumas Walker Pepper & Pie Company. During the week they serve a full country breakfast and spicy Cajun cuisine for lunch. And of course, you can find pie there – really yummy pie.
If you’re one of those who seek out the state’s favorite cuisine, you’ll have no problem finding phenomenal barbeque in Brenham.
LJ’s BBQ is truly one of the best. They’ve got all your favorites, plus juicy pork tacos with homemade aioli sauce and hand chopped coleslaw. The smoky brisket is so tender you can cut it with a fork, and some say the mac ‘n cheese is so creamy “it’ll make you wanna slap your mama!” The owners remember your name when you walk in the door, and that’s what sets LJ’s apart. When you discover LJ’s, you become family.
Another unexpected discovery in Brenham is Ninety Six West, an upscale gem fused with casual personality. Guests can truly relax while sitting outside under the twinkle lights, sipping fine wine and sharing tasty tapas. Ninety Six West prides itself on using organic and local ingredients, including beef from nearby ranches, and making every plate look like a work of art.
Just around the bend in Downtown Brenham is a farmers market turned beer garden. Home Sweet Farm Market & Biergarten is the place to be most nights of the week. Live music pairs nicely with the largest selection of Texas craft beer in over a 50 mile radius. The owners are ambitious farmers who have flipped Brenham onto its edge by creating a growing nightlife enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.
Most of the sweetest pleasures in life can be found in Brenham. Cupcakes, chocolate and toffee are the specialties of Bliss Candy Company. This little business started by making generations-old toffee full of buttery richness and chopped almonds. Then came the chocolates, a dozen varieties of decadent truffles and liqueurs. Finally, the cupcakes. Every day the owners bake several varieties of cakes, filling and topping them with smooth, luscious ganache and buttercream. The favorite is their Sea Salt Caramel creation – the combination of sweet and salty never disappoints.
Whether a spontaneous day trip for pie, a two-day wine tour with the girls, or a mid-week retreat with a romantic dinner for two, you’ll quickly discover that Brenham is the destination that delights the taste buds.