- July 15, 2016

The Leaning Pear: Upscale Dining Worth A Drive To Wimberley


Wimberley has a reputation as a sleepy little town with Hill Country scenery, intriguing shops and residents whose weirdness rivals that of Austinites. One more characteristic needs to be added to the list — great restaurants. If you’ve never been to Wimberley, The Leaning Pear needs to be your first stop when your stomach starts growling.

The first tough choice you’ll have to make happens well before the meal. Do you want to sit inside or outside? The inside matches the building’s sleek and modern exterior with beautiful wood walls and ample windows. The open kitchen gives you a peek into how the kitchen staff brings everything together. Or you could sit outside on their patios overlooking Cypress Creek and the property’s little patch of the Texas Hill Country.

Exterior view of The Leaning Pear restaurant

The front exterior of the restaurant. Photo: Courtesy, The Leaning Pair.

The Leaning Pear’s owners and native Texans Rachel and Matthew Buchanan took a long route to get from their graduation at Texas A&M University to their Hill Country restaurant. After spending some time in Italy and New York City, the couple wanted to get back to their Texas roots and settle down.

“Wimberley is a special place alive with creativity and rooted in a friendly, warm comfort. And we wanted to create an eatery that exemplified that unique character,” Rachel told Austin.com.

With a name as unique as The Leaning Pear, you know there has to be a story. And there is….

“We wanted to go with something that was food-related, and the idea of a ‘pear’ seemed both whimsical and sophisticated, similar to the blended approach of ‘upscale rustic’ we were taking with the restaurant,” Rachel said. “At that time we were living at a ranch here in Wimberley where my Mammaw and Pappaw once lived, and beyond the fence there was an old leaning pear tree. We thought it would be nice to pay homage to that tree since it had been privy to the many evenings of back porch brainstorming in the early stages of creating the restaurant.  I contacted my uncle and artist Jesse Ables and asked him to come up with a few ideas for a logo. He came back to us not with an image of a pear tree but of two pears leaning on one another saying that it reminded him of the ‘pair’ of us. After that, we knew The Leaning Pear was it!”

Frito pie special at The Leaning Pear

The Leaning Pear’s take on a Frito pie exemplifies the restaurant’s upscale rustic theme. The dish is only available as a daily special. Photo: Courtesy, The Leaning Pear.

The Leaning Pear’s everyday menu has some killer dishes on it, but what excites Rachel and Matthew the most are their daily specials. Matthew draws inspiration from the ingredients available at the Wimberley Farmers Market. Regular customers often come up to Matthew there and ask what he’s planning, but he usually doesn’t know until he gets the goods back to the kitchen and starts creating. They’ll just have to come in Friday or Saturday to see!

“Our specials are truly that,” Rachel said. “These items keep our menu alive and give the kitchen an opportunity to share their ideas with our guests. They are also the best vehicle to showcase the local produce since the items on our printed menu are inherently less flexible than those dishes that are put up on the blackboard.”

But don’t sleep on the regular menu. Their crab cake appetizer is delicious and big enough to split between two people or to eat as an entree. Their pantry board offers an assortment of charcuterie, artisanal cheese, seasonal bites and condiments. And the chicken and grits is a comfort food dish that will have you melting into the back of your chair.

The Leaning Pear is open Tuesday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Whether you’re famished from a long day enjoying the outdoors or celebrating a special occasion with friends and family, The Leaning Pear is a perfect place to gather for a meal. The inviting and attractive atmosphere is only surpassed by the food. Even if you have to drive from the opposite side of Austin, join Rachel and Matthew Buchanan for a meal at The Leaning Pear.

Check out a few more of their menu items below…