Eating in the Garden

Dallas Arboretum digs into foodie sustainability with A Tasteful Place

Dallas Arboretum digs into foodie sustainability with A Tasteful Place

A Tasteful Place at Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden
The Dallas Arboretum now has a Tasteful Place. Photo courtesy of Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden

The Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden has opened A Tasteful Place, a 3.5-acre garden inspired by the movement towards growing and eating fresh local food. The $12 million facility has a pavilion, event space, teaching kitchen, orchard, ornamental display plants, and walkways.

In a release, Dallas Arboretum board chairman Mark Wolf says that it is designed to become a Dallas landmark and an international destination. Extra points for his ambition.

"The Dallas Arboretum has carefully planned for many years to build A Tasteful Place to fit in with our mission of being not only a beautiful display garden, but also one involved in education and research," Wolf says. "There are few other gardens in the country doing what we're doing here at this level."

Features include:

Potager Display Garden. A signature element of the development with in-season vegetables, herbs and flowers, planted ornamentally and interspersed with flowers to attract pollinators and beneficial insects.

Charlotte and Donald Test Pavilion. Building with 180-degree views of the garden, lagoon, and walkways features event space and teaching kitchen to showcase chefs who will demonstrate preparation of garden-to-table cuisine. It’s also a site for cooking classes, educational programs, and special events.

Barbara and Bob Bigham Scenic Overlook. Rentable space for weddings, wine tastings, seated dinners and picnics, overlooking downtown Dallas and White Rock Lake.

Ruthie Pack's Tasting Plaza. Daily tastings featuring seasonal produce.

Strolling Trail. U-shaped paved ADA-accessible walkway to take visitors circuitously to see the garden.

Three Sisters Outlook. Trellis-covered patio for intimate celebrations.

Margaret and Jay Simmons Lagoon. More than an acre, it sits below the main garden with a lighted fountain that changes shape and pattern. The edges of the lagoon are surrounded by boulders and lush lawns. A bridge crosses a cascading stream that pours into the lagoon.

There are also a variety of patios, verandas, and walkways named for various benefactors.

A Tasteful Place is a collaborative effort of many alliances with individuals and groups around the city that support the Dallas Arboretum with both development and programming, which will include a year-round calendar of tastings, cooking classes, cooking demonstrations, dinners, and nutrition presentations.