Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Texas >
Oct 3, 2006 01:29 PM

Central Texas small town restaurants - any recommendations?

I previously mentioned Lockhart's Sunshine Café and the Buda Diner as examples of unique central Texas small town restaurants and would like to open a discussion on this subject ... any thoughts and/or recommendations (And, could we avoid the already well known bbq joints so often mentioned on this board?).

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Well there are two places in New Berlin.On is Brisztke Station
    and another place.Heard they are pretty good.Aurora's Cafe down in St.Hedwig on 1518 has good mexican food and the hamburger i had there was fine.Don't get down that way very often.In Seguin,one of the old stores across from the courthouse has a lunch counter.Never tried it so i'm not sure how good it is.Goerke's out near Marion has lunch specials during the week which are pretty tasty.They get very busy with customers at lunch time and have bbq and steaks as well.It's on Weyel Road.Eaten there quite a few times.

    1. Try the Brazos Bell Restaurant in downtown Burton. French country food. The menu changes regularly and the restaurant is only open on Friday and Sat evenings and Sunday brunch. If Cassoulet is on the menu, it is some of the best I've had.

      also Jambalaya's in Giddings.

      1 Reply
      1. re: presspass

        I agree with you about the Brazos Belle. It is a remarkable and unique restaurant, serving French food made with local ingredients (many of the herbs are grown by the chef) in a tiny town (pop. about 350} not far from Brenham. It's a checkered cloth tablecloth / napkins kind of place, not stuffy or formal and offers a decent selection of wines at moderate prices. The French born and trained chef does all the cooking and will visit your table at least once. In addition to good food, they bake their bread on site (You can purchase loaves to take home). It's a wonderful place, especially in the spring, since it's located in the bluebonnet heart of Texas. The drive and a visit to the area are well worth it! Burton, btw, also has a "local" diner across from the Belle, antique stores, and a Cotton Gin (and yearly festival - in the fall, I believe).

      2. For a truly unique and amazing Chow experience drive to Garfield Texas and dine at Little Thailand. It's a couple mobile homes jammed up together.The front one is the dining room proper,the back one is a bar [great jukebox] with a vintage curved leather may also eat there and be entertained by Dick,half of the husband wife team who own the restaurant.His Thai wife Surin commands the kitchen in an array of colorful Thai outfits.She is a gifted Thai chef.They garden extensively and utilize the produce in their menu.The eggs are free range.The steaks done in a wok,Thai style,are out of this world.They serve Thai beer and it is delicious as well.

        3 Replies
        1. re: scrumptiouschef

          Where is Garfield,Tx? I know of a Garfield down in I think Dewitt or Lavaca Counties, near New Davy and CottonPatch, but it mainly consists of the old schoolhouse/community center.Been years since yours truly was down that way.

            1. re: scrumptiouschef

              Dick passed away last fall. The place is still going strong, his son is running the bar now. He isn't quite the character that Dick was, but we still enjoyed dinner there a few months ago.

        2. "Avoid bbq joints"?

          Well, okay.

          Here are a few of my favorites. There are the most famous ones, like the Blue Bonnet Cafe in Marble Falls (did you know that it's named after the hat and not the flower?), the Stagecoach Inn in Salado, and Royer's in Round Top. Also wonderful is the Hill Top B&B and Cafe in Fredericksburg.

          And the Sunset Restaurant on the square in Blanco.

          Don't know if any of you like fried shrimp, but I really do, when it's done right. And that's getting almost impossible to find. Not many places still bread their own shrimp. Most restaurants just buy it already breaded and frozen, from some place like Costco or Sysco. The breading is heavy and gummy, and the shrimp are small and it all tastes exactly the same as the last mediocre place where you had bad shrimp.

          But the Sunset Restaurant still breads their own jumbo shrimp and it is delicious. And they also still have baked potatoes on the menu - another item that's getting harder and harder to find. I drive over to Blanco about once a month just to have that good fried shrimp and a baked potato.

          Also, you can ask generations of college students that drove from the Houston area up to Austin or College Station where are the best sandwiches, baked goods, kolaches on HWY 71 and they'll answer without hesitation: Weikel's in La Grange.

          It's still owned by the family that used to own the famous Bon Ton Cafe, and the food is terrific. It's takeout only, though, and it's located in a gas station, so you'll think at first you might be at the wrong place. But the crowds of folks jamming in to place their orders before the good stuff is all gone quickly lets you know you've found Weikel's.

          3 Replies
          1. re: ChrissieH

            UGH! I am still nauseous from the fried shrimp and onion rings I had this afternoon at Sunset Resaurant and Bar in Blanco. I have never seen such globs of dough passing off as fried food. They were so thickly coated with batter that much of the stuff was UNCOOKED inside. Unbelievable... The waitress apologised for it even as she served the junk, which I had to have returned to the kitchen for another try, which was only slightly better. I guess every restaurant has a bad day... On the other hand, the service was good, as was the dinner salad.

            I am looking forward to returning to Sunset and ordering the shrimp again. I mean, it has to be better the next time. Nothing could be as bad as today's.

            1. re: avi

              Lordy. I feel personally responsible. That sounds NOTHING like the shrimp I drive over an hour each way to get. I'm kind of afraid that either they've changed cooks, or something else awful has happened.

              1. re: ChrissieH

                Don't feel bad. There may be hope yet as this fiasco was blamed on the prep guy who had prepared the shrimp in advance. The waitress volunteered to bring it to the owner's attention ... But that does not explain the onion rings which were overly batterred and greasy and seemed to be made with the same batter as the shrimp. Let's hope for the best ...

          2. Silver K Cafe in Johnson City has some creative menu items

            Not so much central Texas, but I like the chicken fried steak at Magnolia Diner in Magnolia.

            I haven't tried Brazos Belle yet, but will next time I'm in Burton. I like breakfast at Burton Cafe.