Kelly Krause Recommends Austin Experiences to Establish New Traditions
A cheese class, winery visit, art party and more connective activities to enjoy with family and friends
By Kelly Krause
Kelly Krause is an Austin-based marketing creative, managing Global Partnerships and Collabs for lululemon. She’s also the curator and moderator of two speaker series for Commodore Perry Estate, where she interviews founders and creatives in and outside of Austin. Prior to lululemon, Krause was at SXSW for 10 years curating programming and Main Stage talks, while identifying and executing new brand activations and partnerships. Kelly currently holds two advisory board positions in Austin with Rosa Rebellion and Good Work Austin. Follow on IG: @kelly.krause
If you like wine, food, and day trips out of Austin, look no further than the gorgeous Southold Farm + Cellar in Fredericksburg. Grab a picnic board, book a wine tasting and watch the sunset, overlooking the beautiful property.
As one that always has the makings on hand for a cheese and charcuterie board, I’m especially excited about my dear friend Camille Styles’ product launch, Casa Zuma, and I’m specifically eyeing the Gathering Board. It’s an all- in-one cutting board and serving board, which is part of the larger collection of handmade pieces for the table, designed and sourced from around the world.
Take-Home Sake and Caviar
One of the best meals I had in 2022 was the Omakase experience at OTOKO courtesy of Chef Yoshi Okai, so I was thrilled to hear they have a take-home sake and caviar kit available for those nights that I can’t snag a seat inside the 12-seat restaurant.
If you’re remotely curious about gardening or foraging, an afternoon with Urban American Farmer will be an afternoon well spent. Founder Trish Sutton will help you determine your garden goals and design aesthetic, plus provide an education on your sun and soil to build the most beautiful garden. Trish has worked with several restaurants in town and is also the co-founder of Field Guide Festival.
While the Texas Playboys 2022 season games are coming to a close, you can beat the crowd and be ready to go at the start of 2023 by purchasing your season tickets now. These games are a blast, and I especially love that the team always partners with a local charity to give back and support the community.
For my artsy, DIY and hands-on lovers, grab a crew of friends or family and book an art party with Mercedez Rex. I had a chance to take an Intro to Marbling class and not only was it fun, but it was soothing, relaxing and the end result was beautiful.
Kendall and John Antonelli provide some of the most fun and hands-on cheese classes in the heart of Hyde Park. Fun for a date night, family outing, team building exercise or a true cheese education. Pro tip: Always stop through the cheese shop for samples; their team of cheese mongers are some of the most dedicated and passionate people about cheese I’ve ever met.
Last summer, my friends hosted a Splash Dance birthday party with Erica Nix for another friend’s 40th birthday and it was a
BLAST! Erica brings energy and fun to a workout unlike anyone else. When she’s not teaching water aerobics at various hotel pools around the city, she’s hosting pop-up dance workouts and is more than happy to bring the fun to you with private or group lessons, and I can guarantee it’s a fun way to connect and let loose with your pals.
It’s truly impossible to not have a great time at Butler Pitch & Putt, especially when there’s cornhole strategically placed next to the Gimme Burger trailer. This is a fun hang for a date night or family outing. Hot tip: Monday’s are half-off burger night.
I’ve had the great pleasure of both volunteering my time at Urban Roots and attending community lunches at the farm, and both experiences were incredibly impactful. As the only farm-based youth leadership organization in Austin, Urban Roots has been empowering youth and nourishing the community for more than 10 years. Their model is built to offer youth an opportunity to develop leadership and public speaking skills, while providing fresh produce and meals directly to those who need it.
Whether you need a solo escape or want to book a couples retreat (partner, friend, family), milk + honey is my go-to spot for R&R. It’s my favorite indulgence post-travel or pre-event to feel less tense and relaxed. Couples Retreat package — 60-min Signature Massage, 60-min Signature Facial & a manicure for 2 — ($650) or a Signature Retreat — 60-min Signature Massage, 60-min Signature Facial and a manicure for 1 — ($390).
Day Trip to Lockhart for BBQ
I’m a little embarrassed to admit it, but it took me 12 years to finally get to Lockhart, and I can’t believe I waited that long. A short drive from Austin and totally worth your time if you’re remotely BBQ obsessed. Pro-tip: After your meal, walk around historical downtown and pop into Old Pal for a drink and live music.
I’ll take any opportunity I can to support a friend, especially when I’m a huge fan of their work. Keith’s wares elevate any tabletop and always become a point of conversation and connection whenever I serve a meal on his plates or bowls. Last year, around the holidays, he made caviar plates that seem pretty perfect to break out for OTOKO’s take-home caviar kit.
For a little indulgence and decadence, visit Room 725 at the Fairmont downtown for an extensive champagne and caviar menu, plus an impressive list of pre-embargo cigars and excellent craft cocktails. Will I take a few girlfriends there as we toast to 2022, dressed head to toe in sequins? Absolutely. Pro-tip: since you’re going full-on decadent, swing down to Garrison for an order of their truffle tots. Do not share with your guests, they can get their own.
During the month of December, Commodore Perry transforms into a winter wonderland thanks to their partnership with Texas-based artist duo, Anderson + Kincaid, and their annual holiday mansion lighting festival. The artists illuminate gorgeous artwork on the side of the mansion, while guests sip holiday cocktails and enjoy s’mores around the fire pit. It’s a fun evening for kids and adults alike!