I have mixed feelings about this post.
On one hand, I want to share my incredible experience and hope that it inspires others but I also kind of want to keep this all to myself. The more exclusive my experience stays, the fancier I feel.
But y’all – I want you to know this place exists! If you visit Fredericksburg, you’ll probably be busy with wineries but URBANherbal is really not to be missed.
I recently surprised Brian with a bike trip to Fredericksburg, Texas which deserves its own blog post – and will get it! But our awesome bike host Deaton Bednar (of Texas Bike Tours) also connected us with the perfect birthday dinner host, Bill Varney, of URBANherbal.
To Call it Private Dining is an Understatement
URBANherbal is a garden and all natural apothecary that’s been a Fredericksburg staple for 35 years. You can also pop in for a first Friday art show and peruse the gallery in the back of the house.
What most people don’t know is that the owner, Bill Varney has written two books on growing and cooking with herbs and has cooked at the James Beard House in NYC and appeared on The Food Network. With the right “in” you can get an invite to dine privately in his extensive gardens or inside the greenhouse, which is where Brian and I got to eat.
The menu is carefully crafted and cooked by Bill himself and almost all of the vegetables, from the eggplant stack to the edible flowers on the herb salad, are grown right there in the garden. Talk about eating local!
From Aperitif to Dessert, Everything was Perfect
An added bonus – Bill makes one of the best margaritas I’ve ever had. The secret is a salt rim made of edible flowers salt. Of course, we bought some!
Flowers and Veggies and Chickens, Oh My!
Outside in the garden a selection of cheeses and crackers awaited us. As the sun was setting, we wandered the grounds and enjoyed the gardens and the chickens!
Who Knew a Greenhouse Could be So Romantic?
When the sun had set, we moved into the greenhouse. Candlelight and some awesome rustic chandeliers provided a soft ambience and created interesting shadows from the plants surrounding us.
This was private dining at its finest and most rustic. There is nothing quite like lingering over a perfectly cooked meal in a setting as quaint and unexpected as a working greenhouse, surrounded by plants and suffused with candlelight. I hope you get to try it sometime.