Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Austin Wine & Music Festival Weekend, Part One

The Austin Wine & Music Festival happened this weekend and we have had tickets forever - ever since I bought my Katy Perry tickets, as I had bought the wine and music festival tickets the same day. We made a whole weekend out of it and found a special deal to stay at the Renaissance again, because that's what we do. One of my favorite things about the Renaissance in Austin is the beautiful courtyard in the back we can walk through to one of our favorite restaurants,
Cheesecake Factory, like we did Saturday night for mojitos and cheesecake.

Afterwards, we walked back along the lit up courtyard,

where I had way too much fun taking pictures in their new, lit up gazebo in their courtyard - the perfect place for a wedding ceremony. The way the top lit up in the sky reminded me of a starry night and made me feel a little like Leisl in The Sound of Music.

We slowly made our way back to enjoy the Renaissance's gorgeous indoor pool and sauna. The indoor pool was PACKed Saturday night, as was the outdoor pool, so we ended up steaming in the sauna and enjoying a night where we didn't have to do anything but lay in bed and relax.

The next day, we decided to have a leisurely brunch at our favorite (notice a theme here with our favorites? It makes it all that more relaxed) brunch spot, Iron Cactus cafe.
They are the only restaurant in town I know of that has a full brunch buffet with actual breakfast items like made to order omelettes in front of you, belgian waffles with fresh strawberries,
a full dessert bar and not just the regular tex mex fare that I've noticed most Austin brunches serve, although they have that, too,

as well as fajitas in case you're in a lunch mood, it's just not the main star. I grew up on Sunday brunch in Aptos, Seacliff, Soquel, and Seascape (someday I'll have to do a post on my favorite brunch spots in those cities), and this is the closest thing I've found to one of those amazing brunches I enjoyed as a kid in California in Austin. The best part? We had the entire relaxing patio to ourselves.

After brunch we still had some time to kill so we stopped by Lick It, Bite It, or Both - a cupcake shop that is a client of Brando's and one that I've been hearing about through the local grapevine for awhile. Brando was craving Hey Cupcake so I convinced him to try something new.

Plus, I was hoping they had good coffee as I hadn't grabbed any at Iron Cactus and didn't want Starbucks over-caffeinated coffee. We caught them right as they opened, and perhaps caught them a little surprised as they weren't quite sure what to do with us at first since we didn't have an order to pick up, but they warmed up to us. They didn't have the coffee I was craving - they had Dunkin Donuts coffee which happens to be their favorite, and a lot of peoples apparently. I did mention my favorite Austin local coffee, Owl Tree Roasting Company, to the owner, so perhaps the next time we stop by we'll have some local delicious and amazing coffee which puts me right back to Hawaii in two sips.

They had the CUTEst idea to have a bucket full of markers, cupcake wrappers, and double sticky tape for people to write on then stick on their wall. We made our own, then spent a good twenty minutes perusing the other cute cupcake wrappers on the wall.

 For Shawners
 For a good friend of mine, Genie
 For Brando and I
 Loved the artsy ones

I didn't make this one, but it was perfect any way

to be continued (as I realized it was way too long of a post otherwise,
even with my traditional long posts) ...


linda said...

LOVE the gazebo photos and the cupcake wrapper art!

Mrs. Kat said...

Good to know about Iron Catus' brunch. I figured that it would be like the rest of Austin and have served Tex Mex inspired dishes. As relocated midwesterners, we too are used to the brunch buffet!! We'll have to check out IC!

Mariel Torres said...

feel free to use either darling... i'm feel honored!

P.S. i'm loving the gazebo pictures lady!

Meagan said...

Gorgeous photos! Looks like a really fun place to visit!

Ashley said...

Oh my! What a perfect weekend! I love all of your super fun pictures...especially the ones under that awesome gazebo! They look so magical!!

AND I love Cheesecake factory! YUM!

Anna of IHOD said...

Oh my gosh what a FUN time!! Looks like a blast! I love summatime!!

Melissa: Write it in Lipstick said...

Yummie that food looks amazing.

Meredith said...

so fun! that cupcake place looks too cool. oh man, we so need a little trip too now;)

A Fabulous Life said...

What a Fun Time!! Gorgeous pictures!! ;)

Pink Sun Drops said...

Linda - Isn't the gazebo fascinating? Brando had to drag me away!

Mrs Kat - I'm so glad I'm not the only one! Yes, you definitely have to try it out. You will LOVE it.

Mariel - Yay! Aren't they fabulous? I could've spent all night in there.

Meagan - This is the third time we've made it to the Renaissance, and each time it is SO relaxing.

Ashley - Thanks, girl :) ! And, yay, another Cheesecake lover! Magical is the perfect word to describe that gazebo.

Pink Sun Drops said...

Anna - Isn't summer AMAzing? I love all the outdoor activities associated with it. It always comes just in time after winter to remind me how much I love my city and how much I love to explore :) .

Melissa - It was delicious!

Meredith - Little trips are my specialty. I LOVE them. Thanks for saying hi! Can't wait to check out your blog - I'm LOVing your blog name!

Carla - Aw, thanks, girl! It was absolutely wonderful.

Jaymee said...

Aww your time at the festival looks like it was so fun! And yes. Hawaii has amazing coffee :)


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