Dreamscapes Travel & Lifestyle

Winter/Spring 2017

Dreamscapes Travel & Lifestyle Magazine

Issue link: http://read.dreamscapes.ca/i/776538

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Page 47 of 63

U pon arriving at La Cantera Resort & Spa in San Antonio, I was greeted by a life-sized painting of the 1946 Triple Crown winner, Assault, by local artist Lloyd Walsh. The fabled King Ranch bred Assault, a star in a long line of champion thoroughbreds, and was the model for La Cantera. While the decor is refreshingly con- temporary, touches of wood, stone, metal and leather recall the ranch's traditional "big house." Today, the sprawling 223-hectare property high in Texas Hill Country includes two championship golf courses, one of which is the Palmer Course designed by golf legend Arnold Palmer. Players report seeing wild turkeys, deer, quail—even boar—on the links, although the resort's executive chef Robert Carr assured me that the game on my plate at the Sweetfire Kitchen was not from the property. La Cantera's new Signature restaurant by cel- ebrated San Antonio chef Andrew Weissman embodies the culinary movement dubbed "Tex-Next" that could describe any of the city's avant-garde culture. The cuisine blends traditional recipes with imaginative twists: we sampled fresh seafood and lamb along with South Texas quail, dove and venison (destinationhotels.com/la-cantera- resort-and-spa). On a subsequent foray into wine country, we followed the Fredericksburg Wine Road along U.S. Route 290, the second most-visited wine trail after Napa, California. Conversations with Texas Hill Country winemakers were eye-openers. "The main challenges to growing grapes in Texas are late-spring freezes, hailstorms and cotton-root rot, not to mention blis- tering heat and deer that eat everything," says Julie Kuhlken, co-owner of Peder- nales Cellars. "In 2013, four late-spring freezes destroyed all stages of our viognier crop." Nevertheless, her boutique winery specializing in Spanish and Rhone-style wines has claimed several international prizes and offers an enticing selection of unique bouquets. Wine distribution is also a challenge for a grape-growing region that spans hill country and the high desert. This has led to the formation of strategic alliances such as 4.0 Cellars, where oenophiles can stop and taste the vintages of several wineries in one DREAMSCAPES WINTER/SPRING 2017 48 A HOT SPOT OF INNOVATION, THE "ALAMO CITY" ROCKS WITH CREATIVITY, CONGENIALITY AND CLASS. BY E. LISA MOSES From Tex-Mex Style to TEX-NEXT FUSION

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