Culinary and Beverage Destination in the Texas Hill Country To Attract Many
By Lance Avery Morgan Photography courtesy of Arch Bay Resort
PASS THE WINE
Arch Ray Resort, might become the hottest new tourism destination in the heart of Texas Hill Country. Initially opened as a tasting room, it has now grown to be a full-service resort including the 1894 Ranch To Table restaurant, Paul Bee Distillery, Ogle Brewery, Arch Ray Winery, conference center, an RV park, and the new Living Tree Amphitheater live music venue. It is a destination for relaxation with a vacation residential community and a luxury hotel in development. What more could you ask for in Texas’ wildly popular region for fun?
We all know that the Texas Hill Country encompasses a 31,000-square-mile area, and is famed for its wildflowers, dance halls, hiking trails, and relaxed way of life have made it a tourist mecca for decades. In fact, CNN Travel named the Texas Hill Country one of the best places to visit in the world in 2024. Would you believe that almost two-million people visit wineries in the Texas Hill Country making it one of the most visited wine regions in the country? Plus, hundreds of thousands of visitors are expected to flock to the Texas Hill Country for the total solar eclipse on April 8, 2024, as it is in the path of totality.
“Arch Ray Resort began as a dream that grew from our success operating the Fiesta Winery enterprise,” said Sally Baxter, co-owner of Arch Ray Resort, when we caught up with her. “We developed Fiesta Winery to include four locations and decided to expand on our operational experience in the resort industry. We have created a resort that is unlike anything else in Texas and provides a breadth of amenities that locals and tourists crave including farm-to-table gourmet dining, an event venue, a concert stage, an RV park, a tasting room, the Barrel Room, offering award-winning Texas wines, craft beer, distilled spirits, and live music. Arch Ray Resort has it all.”
THE NAME GAME
Arch Ray Resort earned its name by blending family names from Stephen and Sally Baxter — Archie and Ray. Both families are known for their rich Texas history with six generations of Texas ranching, and love of great hospitality. Ray Ogle once owned a ranch that has since become a part of Big Bend National Park. Ogle Brewery invokes the spirit of West Texas, where everyone walks to their own beat. S. A. Baxter and his family have farmed and ranched on the same property, tucked along the Colorado River, where they continue to do so to this day. S. A. Baxter, the hall-of-fame Original Rancher, was known for his horses and cows, and the Angus-Wagyu beef served at Arch Ray 1894 Ranch To Table Restaurant still comes from those bloodlines. Steve’s son-in-law, Weston McCoury, oversees operations today, which now include a vineyard of approximately 10 acres.
1894 Ranch To Table
We like that fine dining at Arch Ray Resort brings the freshest ingredients from the family ranch for an unforgettable experience. From the pasture to the plate, from the prairie to the palate, Baxter Ranch provides the finest beef tended with generational pride and excellence. Guests are invited to pair fine cuts of Angus-Wagyu beef with an array of choices from craft beers, Texas wine, or cocktails made with spirits distilled on-site at Arch Ray Resort.
Arch Ray Winery
Everyone has different preferences in wine. Led by winemaker Weston McCoury and his experienced winemaking team, Arch Ray Winery produces a selection of white, rosé, red, and dessert wines made with Texas-grown grapes. Wine-tasting flights and wines by the glass are available at the beautiful tasting room with a variety of choices such as Viognier, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Grigio, Sangiovese, Tempranillo, and Tannat.
Where there is fun, there is often a beer. This brewery is influenced by the Ogle Family side, who settled in the Big Bend region in the 1800s and whose character and wit helped settle one of the toughest parts of Texas. Ogle Brewery makes a wide selection of craft beers from light ale and Lager beers to more complex IPAs, Stouts, and Schwarzbiers hand-crafted beers using premium ingredients. The Fredericksburg brewery offers six beers on tap at a time and offerings rotate.
Paul Bee Distillery
The area’s German culture has long had a relationship with creating world-class beer and spirits. Arch Ray Resort features a full-scale distillery with a German-made hybrid pot and column still producing a variety of spirits including bourbon, gin, vodka, and now its first rum distilled on-site. The spirits made and aged at Paul Bee Distillery are available in a full menu of cocktails served at the resort, as well as ready-to-drink canned cocktails. The first bottle releases in January 2024 include 100 Proof Ranch Cut Bourbon, 110 Proof Ranch Cut Reserve Bourbon, as well as vodka and gin.
Living Tree Amphitheater
Who doesn’t love live music? Arch Ray Resort is home to the largest live music venue in the Texas Hill Country. The Living Tree Amphitheater, which opened in December 2023 with a sold-out show by Creed frontman, Scott Stap, accommodates 7,000 guests in front of a spacious stage suitable for top touring acts. The next concert will be held April 7 and 8, 2024 with multiple bands to celebrate the solar eclipse. Check the online events schedule for upcoming live acts this Spring.
Sip, then stay. Arch Ray Resort will be a full-service, resort-style destination in the Texas Hill Country with a Wyndham Dolce hotel and conference center in development that will include 130 rooms. Arch Ray RV is a stunning RV Park with beautiful landscaping, river access, and turf lawns. Guests enjoy the resort amenities including the tasting room and restaurant, not to mention Main St. Fredericksburg is just a five-minute drive away. Arch Ray On The River, a residential community, is located along the Pedernales River, adjacent to Arch Ray Resort. It provides an opportunity to own property on the river with an RV pad or B&B cabin site. Units are available for immediate purchase and for vacation homes or investment property.
With a high-end hotel, event venue, concert stage, and farm-to-table gourmet restaurant, this Texas Hill Country resort is a destination for relaxation for those longing to experience something authentic – a place where you can check your phone at the door, cast your worries aside, and create memories. Arch Ray Resort is located at 4160 E US HWY 290, Fredericksburg, TX 78624