Sunday, July 25, 2021

Our Vacation to Dallas, Houston, and Texarkana in the Summer of July 2021

Carrie and I Before Taste of Texas Dinner
Carrie and I went on vacation from July 9 through July 20 to Texas. We stopped in Dallas to visit our friend Javier and then on to Houston to visit our friend Corrie and her family. This update will highlight some of the places we visited and some of our trip. No, it will not be a day-by-day account of what we did, so hopefully it will not be too boring and you will read all of what I have to say and comment.

Winery in Texas
Our first night in Dallas, Javier took us to Fortunata Winery. Wow! What an amazing environment. The wines were fantastic. Carrie and I did a tasting it was one of those instances where I could easily have purchased a bottle of each of the four that I tasted. I started off with a Chardonnay, Red Blend, Painted Lady, and finished off with The Colonel (see full menu). Fantastic spot where they host parties and have a huge outside area to enjoy your selected wine. After our tasting, we each got a glass to enjoy plus two pizzas. 

I did not record which pizzas we got, although Carrie likely remembers, but they were both very good. We bought a bottle of wine that Javier and I split and Carrie got a watermelon drink which she liked. It was a fun first night and the place is very close (5 minutes) from where Javier lives. Javi said he takes people here any chance he gets and this was our first visit, so he recently discovered this place that is less than five minutes from where he lives. Worth checking out Fortunata Winery if you are in the area. Sitting outside in July with a cool breeze was amazing while enjoying delicious food and wine.

Truck Yard Dallas with our Puppies and Friends
We spent a few days in the Dallas area with Javier visiting various places. He took us to Truck Yard and we decided to take Oliver with us. The Truck Yard is an outside area with various vendors and a lot of beer. We were a little concerned taking Oliver as he can sometimes be aggressive towards other dogs; however, on this adventure, he was a perfect little gentleman. Interacting with other dogs and being rather friendly. One particular dog he went up to three or four times, tail wagging, and generally friendly. It was rather odd to see after seeing Oliver try and take out other dogs his size or larger. It was a nice surprise.

We had a great time at Truck Yard where we ate from the food trucks and drank a lot of great beer. We were able to meet up with friends of Javier. While it was around 95 degrees when we went out to the Truck Yard, it was really not bad at all. We had a wonderful time and good to meet new friends of Javier and some that we had met in the past. It was a fun time!

Following our time in Dallas, we headed to Houston on July 11. We had a great time in Houston spent with our friend Corrie and her children. We ate and drank a number of wonderful spots in Houston. Pluckers Wing Bar, Snooze Eatery which is a breakfast spot we first found in Colorado years ago and continue to seek out, Floyds Cajun Seafood which is another place we always try to visit when Houston, and Taste of Texas where we had dinner one evening.

Gulf Coast Distillers Enjoying Drinks and Company
We had good drinks at all the locations listed previously and I would now like to call out some of the places where we had fantastic drinks. Gulf Coast Distillers in Houston was a fun spot. The presentation of the spirits were good and the taste of the drinks was even better. We spent a few hours at Gulf Coast Distillers and we ate dinner there too. I highly recommend visiting Gulf Coast Distillers if you are in the area as it was well worth the visit the time spent.

Another favorite when in the Houston area is to visit Cyclone Anaya's where we spent a few hours enjoying margaritas. The chips and salsas are delicious and the variety of good strong margaritas makes the afternoon fly by. 

Oliver, TBo, Carrie, and I Enjoying the Pool
As our week concluded in Houston, we spent our final day at Uncle Tommy's house for a pool day. It was a day to remember as we all had fun and the drinks were flowing easily. I was the bartender and had fun making drinks for everyone. Oliver was being good and we were surprised he wanted to get on a raft and float around the water. Of course, we were pushing him around the water, but he was enjoying his time around the pool. We had a great time and it was good to finally be able to enjoy being outside after it rained everyday since we had been in Houston.

We left for Dallas on July 18 where we stopped at another favorite spot which is eatZi's Market & Backery. Picked up some food to take back to Javi's house to wind down and enjoy the evening. Monday would have Carrie and I leaving Dallas to head to Texarkana to see Carrie's uncle. We had a nice visit and met is girlfriend, Audra, and her little dog JoJo. We had a wonderful visit and went out to eat that evening meeting up with a cousin of Carrie. A short visit as Carrie and I left early the following morning to get back to Topeka.

Oliver Very Sleepy on Way Home and After Arriving Home
Oliver slept the whole way home and most of the days following returning home. I think Oliver had just as much fun as us on the trip even though he was taken out of his normal routines. I went back to work on Wednesday and recall when I came home for lunch on Wednesday, Oliver had been sleeping all morning and was a bit grumpy where he growled when I went to pet him as to say he needed more rest.

It was a great trip and look forward to a doing it again in a year. Thanks to the hospitality of Javier, Corrie, Tommy, Robert, and Audra, it made for a wonderful trip.

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