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Restaurants in San Marcos/New Braunfels

This weekend I'm meeting for dinner with friends who live in San Antonio. Usually we meet halfway-ish at the Grist Mill, but the weather will be too cold to enjoy their patio.

Does anyone have suggestions of a nice or interesting restaurant in San Marcos or New Braunfels? I think we generally like all types of cuisine, and we're looking for something that's not a chain.

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  1. How about the new Coopers BBQ in New Braunfels.

    4 Replies
    1. re: PappyAustin

      I went recently and found that the BBQ is not as good as the Llano location. The pork chop was overdone with black pepper and the sauce was slightly thin. Not that atmosphere matters too much to me, but the interior of the restaurant feels industrial at best.

      What about Herbert's Taco Hut in San Marcos for Tex-Mex? Greasy spoon/dive.

      1. re: exlnghrn

        I think we're looking for something a bit more "nice evening out with friends" than Coopers or Taco Hut.

        (I have been to the New Braunfels and Llano Coopers too, and I agree exlonghorn - the atmosphere is more like Rudy's and everything was just a bit off)

        1. re: heyzeus212

          My list for you would include:
          Gruene Onion
          Myron's Steakhouse
          Macadoo's Seafood
          Huisache Grill

        2. re: exlnghrn

          Herbert's has gone steadily downhill since Herbert died a few years ago.

          Actually stopped at Cooper's in NB on the way back from SA at noon. The brisket was great and the jalapeno sausage was great as well. I think it may be the first time I've had jalapeno sausage that was actually spicy and jalapeno tasting. Didn't have any sides since that's sacrilegious.

      2. For a nicer dinner, you might consider Texas Red's or Grin's. Both are above average and have a variety on their menu.

        1 Reply
        1. re: exlnghrn

          Gruene Onion is awesome. Great food and also has a lounge on one side for after dinner drinks!

        2. I've heard a lot about the Gruene Door. Though I have not yet been (sorry), the menu looks very nice.


          1 Reply
          1. re: Rene

            I've been twice and loved my food both times. If it was closer, I'd go more often.

          2. heyzeus, where did you end up going? We're planing on meeting up with our San Antonio cousin for a halfway lunch sometime.

            Does anyone else have a favorite lunch spot near the halfway point? We love great food but atmosphere is important too.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Helind

              We ended up going to the Grist Mill in Gruene, on the "stick with what you know" gameplan. But maybe next time we'll try one of the places listed in this thread.

            2. I missed this original post, but in New Braunfels we like Liberty Bistro as well as Huisache.

              Liberty Bistro
              200 N Seguin Ave, New Braunfels, TX 78130

              1 Reply
              1. re: Carter B.

                In San Marcos I've really liked:

                Cool mint cafe
                Root cellar cafe
                Tap Room (for their burgers)

                Milts pit in Kyle has the best bbq on I-35 that I've found
                Los Vega in Kyle, great mexican food if you don't mind eating in a cramped trailer.

                The Tap Room
                129 E Hopkins St Ste 120, San Marcos, TX 78666

              2. My two picks would be Granzin's in New Braunfels for some BBQ and smoked meats or Clear Springs Cafe in Clear Springs for their Fried Catfish and onion rings. Clear Springs Cafe is about 8 minutes east of New Braunfels at exit 189.

                Clear Springs Restaurant
                1692 S State Highway 46, New Braunfels, TX 78130

                4 Replies
                1. re: Homero

                  I find Granzin's highly overrated. The sweetness (honey?) of their sauce overpowers, not enhances, the flavor of their meat, and they aren't very green, as they use styrofoam for just about everything. But their sweet tea is killer!

                  1. re: chowngroove

                    I will admit there is better BBQ out there (Lockhart and Luling). In general, I don't use BBQ sauce, and I like the quality of their meat as it it., but try some of their summer sausage, beef jerky, and soft jerky (kinda like pastrami) as well if you get a chance.

                    1. re: Homero

                      Try Woody's BBQ in the old Southwest Market location. I resisted going there since they kicked out SWM but that was some of the best brisket around since John Mueller.

                2. What about the Riverhouse Tea Room in Gruene? Has anyone been there?

                  1. I just had the most delicious breakfast at the Root Cellar Cafe in San Marcos. They have quite an extensive breakfast menu, with various egg dishes, oatmeal, bagels, lots of sides, and on the weekends, eggs benedict and florentine. Today I got their breakfast sampler and was just delighted. Two eggs (over easy for me) with house made sausage (or bacon or ham) with sauteed grape tomatoes (a side of fruit comes, I subbed this in), and toast (or bagel, or english muffin) with a delicious fresh strawberry puree instead of jam. The eggs were cooked perfectly - and remarkably un-greasy. The sausage was insane - 2 big, thick, hand formed patties crisped on the outside, juicy on the inside - incredibly flavorful. The little tomatoes were wonderful - halved, sauteed to the point of juicyness but holding their shape. The whole wheat toast was one big thick piece - crisp outside, fluffy and toothsome and perfect for SOPPING UP THE GLORIOUS, GLORIOUS MELANGE OF YOLK/TOMATO/SAUSAGE at the end of the meal. Great coffee. Beautiful space - subterranean with high little street level windows and local art on the stone walls. Might be a destination breakfast.

                    Root Cellar Cafe
                    215 N L B J Dr, San Marcos, TX 78666