Located on a 28-acre ranch at 16604 Fitzhugh Road in Dripping Springs, Texas (approximately 25 miles south of Austin), Treaty Oak is regarded as the vanguard distillery that strives to strike a perfect balance between heritage and innovation in distilled spirits. Their recently re-opened culinary space, Alice’s Restaurant, (formerly Ghost Hill Restaurant) boasts a new design, replete barrel stave-covered walls (produced and installed by local Dripping Springs contractor Chris Burnett) and a selection of sleek booths and tables.
Combined with the new look of the restaurant, the team has also promoted Chris Andrews to General Manager and Justin Richardson as Executive Chef of the restaurant. Since reopening, the duo has aimed transform the previous Texas BBQ-centric food menu into more of an elevated culinary experience for distillery guests, which features locally-sourced meats, grains and greens.
The 28-acre Dripping Springs property was officially purchased In 2014 by Founder & CEO Daniel Barnes. In addition to the restaurant, the ranch is used for additional production space for the company’s spirits portfolio as well as a destination to escape the city limits for entertainment. The distillery is used to create the brand’s award-winning lineup of whiskies and gin, but also serves as a unique culinary experience to visitors.
Chef Justin Richardson, attended culinary school in Austin and worked at the Driskill Hotel under Chef David Bull. Prior to joining Treaty Oak in the Fall of 2017. He also spent time at the Stoneleigh Hotel in Dallas and The Pearl Brewery in San Antonio under Andrew Weissman.
Chef Justin Richardson
“Our approach is to source local product that highlights Texas foods, flavors, and farmers. We develop sustainable food programs and present thoughtful food that incorporates the distillation and fermentation side of the property and reflects the flavors that make Treaty Oak Distillery so incredible.”
Alice’s signature menu items on the new menu include: Roasted Cauliflower Soup, topped with pine nuts and grilled green onions; Smoked Bandera Quail that bursts with apple and raisin flavors, served with cornbread stuffing and candied pecans; Creole Shrimp and Grits; Chicken Mole and Chicken Fried Steak with a Bourbon Mushroom Gravy (Treaty Oak’s take on Alice’s original recipe). In addition there are large plates also featured on the “specials board” above the bar, as well as desserts and a kid’s menu. The bar at Alice’s Restaurant will continue to offer beer, experimental whiskeys or cocktails, made exclusively with Treaty Oak spirits and fresh ingredients that are kegged and served with a CO2 tap system, resulting in a perfectly balanced cocktail every time.
The team also recently opened The Cocktail Lab on-site at the distillery, where science meets the art of the cocktail. The intimate venue, which seats approximately 40 guests, features a variety of handcrafted whiskey and gin cocktails, created by new Cocktail Lab Manager Meghan Webb. With nine years of hospitality experience, and three focused specifically on craft cocktails, she draws inspiration from local ingredients and the energy of the surrounding culture – in her words, “90s hip hop meets liquid intelligence.”
Prior to Treaty Oak, Meghan split her time between two craft cocktail bars in Ft. Worth – The Proper, a neighborhood cocktail bar, and Thompson’s Bookstore, a whiskey/craft cocktail bar downtown with a speakeasy in the basement. A key player in forming Fort Worth’s USBG chapter three years ago, she’s currently working on her CSS (certified spirits specialist). Although Meghan was born in Austin, she has resided in Fort Worth the majority of her life. Now, she’s glad to be back home and making waves with Treaty Oak Distilling.