I had the pleasure of visiting Magnolia Market last week in Waco, Texas. Like many, I’ve seen every episode of Fixer Upper and couldn’t wait to see the growing empire built by Chip and Joanna Gaines. After two years of missed opportunities, I flew in early to Austin, before a race at Circuit of the Americas, and drove up to Waco.
The Market provides a very big parking lot for visitors but it’s usually full and if you’re not careful, you can spend quite a bit of time maneuvering out of there to find another location. The Baptist church down the street has two large lots within the same block of the Market and it’s only $10 to park…good for them, good for me.
Being that the bakery line was about 30 deep, I started there first. As soon as I was in line, someone from the bakery came around handing out menu cards and pencils. There are a lot of items to try but I narrowed it down to three cupcakes; Lemon-Lavendar, The Shiplap (vanilla on vanilla) and The Classic (vanilla on chocolate)…then added a chocolate chip cookie. The line went very fast and I was up to the counter in about 10 minutes. Everyone was happy to be there, and a bit excited, so it was kinda fun hanging out with the other visitors agonizing over our choices. I handed my card to the cashier, paid, then waited to be called. I’m a bit of a packaging nut ball and really loved the black boxes that can hold four cupcakes. It’s a nice idea and feels like someone is giving you a gift even though you’re paying for it. There is merchandise in the bakery but the line is moving quickly and you can find all of those gifts in the Market.
Next, I headed across the way to the Market. It was packed, even on a Wednesday. It’s everything you would think of…all the design goodness that is Joanna Gaines. Pottery, signs, baskets, flowers, candles…lots of items you see on the shows. Just when I thought I was done, I see a staircase that takes me down into Chip’s Corner. Hats, drink ware, t-shirts and other items that make you giggle because of his antics on the show. If you purchase over a $100 of merchandise, they have an area you can ship it all home for free. Now, who does that?!
It was after lunch and since I wasn’t finished looking around, I had to skip eating at Magnolia Table. It closes at 3pm and I would have had to get back into my car to get there. No harm done. I tackled the food trucks!
The set up outside is quite smart….a large area of turf in front of the Silos for families, lots of open and covered seating, all surrounded by food trucks. You can get just about anything there including one truck dedicated to grilled cheese. After much pondering, I finally picked the wood fired pizza, then settled in at a table for a lot of taste testing. The pizza was fantastic but I can honestly say, I’ve never had cupcakes and cookies like Magnolia’s. They were so moist and the buttercream frosting was so creamy…perfect sweetness. Joanna definitely perfected these recipes and I wish I lived closer or had the option of ordering online. I thoroughly sampled everything and had a nice visit with others at my table. It just so happened that one family was about to move to Indianapolis to work with IndyCar….small world.
Relaxed and stuffed, I reluctantly headed back to Austin. It was a nice afternoon to hang out and meet people. Chip and Joanna Gaines have really created something special for us. It was a great start to a busy race weekend.
Note: In hindsight, I should have taken a lot more photos but I was too busy stuffing my face and relaxing. Next trip!