The Fall Show is coming and this is where you go first.
Hi y’all. As the show approaches, a bunch of folks have started asking me how to ‘do Round Top right.’ For those of you who’ve missed it, there’s a tab up at the top of The Crush List screen that says “About The Antiques Show” and that’ll take you to a page of what I consider to be very useful general advice and info and back roads tricks. But I think can do more to help you decide where to go and when. Each of my next several posts will highlight one of my favorite venues. I’ll pull together a bunch of representative images and tell you a little about why and when I like to shop each one. Hope it helps.
First up: The Fields
I keep telling everyone the Show starts September 18, but that’s a lie. A bunch of us will be out there early the week before that, around the 13-14th, to check out The Fields, which I consider to include North Gate, Bar W and even (I know, I know you’ll disagree) the Renck Hall area. My very first The Crush List post was on North Gate Field. I said it then and it’s still true: it all starts in The Fields. If you’re looking for multiples, for imports, for metal letters, or biergarten tables or carnival signs or bread boards or silverware or matching marble sinks or farm furniture or holiday decorations or thousands of BARGAINS, this is your place.
I think The Fields are best enjoyed during the early bird days. You can always come back later in the show when everything is completely set up and the frozen lemonade booth is going and the free parking is a treat. But try go early when the dealers are selling to other dealers and things are just beginning to come together like a chick just pecking its way out of the egg. You’ll have to use the porta potties. And you’ll need to pack some Kind Bars and almonds and apples and waters because food vendors are not really out yet. It’ll be hot and a little lonely, but enjoy. You’re shopping the Show like a local.
For the third post in a row, we’re driving up and over the bluff behind LaGrange to the town of Schulenburg. Our two previous visits have taken us to church and on a lovely history hike and I know you’re too polite to say it out loud, but you’re definitely thinking, “This has been such a great field trip but for heaven’s sake I’m absolutely famished. Could we maybe stop and get some lunch somewhere?”
So glad you asked. The Garden Co. Marketplace and Cafe is one of those oozy charmy spots that would be everyone’s favorite in any quaint town. Or big city for that matter. The decor is spot on country chic, mixing industrial with mid-century with vintage ruralist with cottage with repurposed. Servers are welcoming and enthusiastic, the food is just exactly what you hoped it would be and the store & nursery are hard to get out of without a purchase or two. A pepper plant and gauzy tunic top last time if you must know.
Of course you want to hear more about the food, so I’ll be happy to share descriptions from the lunch menu as you take your photo tour of the dining spaces and places. Don’t miss the farm tool chandelier in this very first photo…
Pesto marinated grilled portobello mushrooms topped with goat cheese and pecans served with field greens and balsamic drizzle.
Crisp boston leaf lettuce and and mixed greens topped with chimichurri marinated grilled hanger steak, hardwood smoked bacon, red onions, tomatoes and crumbled blue cheese with a honey balsamic vinaigrette.
Grilled sourdough bread with sharp cheddar, swiss, gruyére and bleu cheese served with side servings of dijon mustard and a fruit chutney.
Buttery toasted brioche bread with thick bacon, lettuce & tomato with roasted garlic aioli.
Here’s why the chill little seating area in the back is so great: Let’s say you and your friends have driven from wherever over to Schulenburg to meet for a nice dinner of seared duck breast and brussel sprouts. You’ve finished your meal and everyone’s thinking it’s probably time to get up from the table but you kind of want to spend a bit more time together since you’ve come all this way. It’s late, and it’s not Houston or anything, so there aren’t too many other spots in town to move to for a nightcap or dessert. Well how great, your group can go back to the comfy lounge area and hang out for a while. And how convenient that you’ll pass the wine bar on the way there!
Want to shop in the Marketplace & Nursery real quick before we head home? I thought you might!
P.S. If your field trip this time is to Round Top not Schulenburg, there’s also a Garden Co. Marketplace shop right across Henkel Square from Pie Haven.
In this random list of my very favorite things about my very favorite place I’ve tried to capture the area’s special pieces and parts. Some are big deal, some are small gestures, some are legendary and some are just tiny pip and squeak.
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