NewsLegacyTraveling Texas with Ann Harder


Traveling Texas: A piece of heaven in Florence, Texas

Posted at 11:04 AM, May 03, 2023

FLORENCE, Texas — It’s springtime and that means wedding season! We took a trip to the award-winning The Vineyard at Florence, to find out why it’s such a favorite of couples tying the knot.

There are more than 500 wineries in Texas – from small producers to large wineries with international markets. But here in Florence, you’ll find a premier winery and Tuscan-style community.

And with a breathtaking setting, it’s a repeat winner for brides and grooms.

Ella Amore is one of 7 locations here at The Vineyard at Florence that a couple could choose for their wedding ceremony and related parties.

“It is a beautiful 700 acres property that is simply a piece of heaven and Tuscany in the middle of Texas," said Soraya Spencer.

Spencer is the General Manager of the vineyard and Vice President of hospitality with Hoque Global.

“When we started, we were doing 12 weddings a year. We are now at 45 weddings a year in the books for this year only, and now we still have a few months to go," Spencer said. "You can have your ceremony under an oak tree or in the vines, and then you can have an amazing party here in the restaurant or anywhere in our Firenze building. So that is the beauty of our property, is you can pick and choose, and it could be different at all times. So, we're very lucky.”

And it gets rave reviews! For the third year named a winner of The Knot wedding planning website’s “best of weddings.”

The Knot award is the most rewarding award we can get, honestly, because it comes really, truly from people that had experienced our quality of service, our love of hospitality, and our attention to detail when it comes to food, to service and to making sure everything goes to perfection.," said Spencer.

But for 13 years this has been a working vineyard and award-winning winery.

“We have an amazing winemaker, Chad Alexander, that crafts and creates wine for wines for us in small batches. And we're really lucky to have him. We had won a lot of awards. We actually have six more wines coming in by June and we are very excited to see what those wines will win," said Spencer.

The winery is another lovely spot for all kinds of gatherings, from birthday celebrations to baby showers. Here they serve a 6 to 7-course dinner with wine pairing hosted by Soraya and Alexander.

There’s a wonderfully laid-back vibe here that’s clearly popular with the guests wanting to relax.

And a newer piece to the vineyard at Florence is its Farmer's Commons restaurant.

“Every little piece that you see everywhere was really thought out and put together about our team. And it is something I'm proud about," said Spencer.

From salads with edible flowers to oven-fired pizza—many of the ingredients are grown in their own gardens.

“I believe this is every chef's dream, I would say, to have our own garden. So farm-to-table," Chef Wesley Virassamy said.

And Virassamy loves pairing this elevated comfort food with the perfect wine.

“We work with our team in the great room to always try to get the right selection of wines so that we make sure, you know, the dining experience is actually very exciting, I would say, and adventurous at the same time," Virassamy said.

For overnight guests—luxurious boutique hotel accommodations in a spectacular setting.

Soraya believes the personal touch is what counts.

“We put all our hearts into it. We pay attention to every detail. Our guests. Happiness is really what matters to us," said Spencer.

Whether you’re looking for a quick getaway in a beautiful setting, or the perfect place to say “I do”, check out The Vineyard at Florence. It’s a short drive, just an hour southwest of Waco.

Their hours can be found on their website: