Horse Play

A farm-to-table oasis in the heart of Texas

Let's face it: The Lone Star State isn't exactly at the forefront of epicurean trends. Which is why The Inn at Dos Brisas–set amid cow towns, sprawling ranches and bluebonnet fields–is such an exciting find.

Located 80 miles northwest of Houston, this 300-acre, four-casita Relais & Chateaux property is a playpen for Houstonians escaping the city, but it's the inn's farm-to-table restaurant that has been garnering national buzz.

Chef Jason Robinson, a veteran of Chicago's Tru, is at the helm of the 24-seat restaurant. And there's no doubt he knows his way around the kitchen: It takes serious talent (and gumption) to present eight-course vegetable tasting menus in the heart of Texas.

But the inn's unsung star is horticulturalist Johnnie Boyd Baker, who oversees the resort's two-acre crop of certified organic produce, which includes 463 varieties of vegetables. Right now, she's pumped about the 70 varieties of heirloom tomatoes that Robinson will stuff, pickle and–this being the South–fry.

Though it's easy to spend your days putting around in your private golf cart or lazing by the pool, it's more fun to get your hands dirty. Guests can get gardening tips from Baker, pry Robinson for his top-secret Bloody Mary recipe, or schedule a wine-tasting with sommelier Christopher Bates (and ask him about his cheese-mongering–he may let you sample his wares).

The Inn at Dos Brisas, 10000 Champion Dr., Washington, Texas; 979-277-7750 or dosbrisas.com