Hill Country Food & Wine Guide
by Virginia B. Wood & the Cuisines staff
Cafe d'Anne (46)
205-A Hwy. 27, Comfort, 830/995-5226
Word of mouth encouraged us to try this little lunch-only cafe situated next door to an antique shop in Comfort. Cordon Bleu-trained Indian chef Joseph Matthews settled in Comfort several months ago and operates a one-man show, greeting guests, cooking and waiting tables in a tall white toque. The menu is limited to a few items each day and the dining pace is very leisurely, which is to be expected with one man doing all the work. Matthews describes his cuisine as French, although the menu was seared lamb and chicken curry the day we visited.
Bear Moon Bakery & Cafe (47)
401 S. Main, Historical District, Boerne, 830/816-2327
Locals in this charming German town were concerned when Paula Hayward converted the downtown doughnut shop into the Bear Moon, but they were won over soon after she opened for business. These days, the busy bakery and cafe is voted to have the best coffee and pastries in town, and the $5.95 daily breakfast buffet is a ritual, especially on weekends. The pastry case is packed with decorated cakes, French and German pastries, cookies, brownies, bars, and big, beautiful homemade pies. Homemade breads range from oatmeal and Scottish harvest to rye, pumpernickel, and a nutty loaf with pistachios, pumpkin seeds, and parmesan cheese. Sandwiches are made with fresh bread, and the bountiful loaves sell out every day. Hayward's cooking is light, flavorful, and healthy, making this place a favorite among cyclists who train on Hill Country back roads.
Guadalupe River Ranch Resort (48)
695 FM 474, eight miles north of Boerne on the Guadalupe River, 830/537-4837
This fabled ranch property with its imposing flagstone mansion has been everything from a working ranch to a hunting lodge to a movie star hideaway. Years have gone by since Olivia de Havilland vacationed here between movie roles, but the site still allows folks to get away from it all -- nowadays as a resort and conference center. Guests can relax in the main house or the comfortable cabins, play sports or stroll along the banks of the cypress-lined Guadalupe River. New owners have recently spruced up the place, adding amenities and enhancing the quality of the food service. A great idea for small-to-medium-sized corporate conferences or an upscale family reunion. The back-country drive here is scenic, but keep an eye out for the wildlife; the day we visited, a deer seemed to be playing chicken with cars on the two-lane highway.