Where to eat in the Texas Hill Country
Dallas Morning News
Austin: Nutty Brown Café – Generous helpings of great Hill Country food: burgers, sandwiches, fish, chicken, salads, Tex-Mex and favorite sides, plus live Texas music weekend nights. Lunch and dinner daily. 12225 U.S. 290 West; 512-301-4648; www.nuttybrown.com.
Driftwood: The Salt Lick – This place, with its smoky, tangy aromas and flavors, regularly makes the list of favorite Texas barbecue spots. Open daily for lunch and dinner. 18300 FM1826; 512-894-3117; www.saltlickbbq.com.
Wimberley Pie Co. – About 20 kinds of pies, by the slice or whole, plus cheesecake, quiche and cookies. West side of Ranch Road 12 south of the town center. Open daily except Sunday and Monday. Call or check Web site for hours. 512-847-9462; www.wimberleypie.com.
Marble Falls: The Falls Bistro and Wine Cellar – Specializes in tapas, salads, cheeses, desserts and wines mainly from Texas. Lunch, happy hour and dinner Tuesday through Saturday. 202 Main St.; 830-265-4580; www.thefallsbistro.com.
Marble Falls: The famous Blue Bonnet Café has dished up old-fashioned Southern home cooking and hearty breakfasts for 75 years (211 U.S. 281; 830-693-2344; www.bluebonnetcafe.net). It has been joined by outstanding relative newcomers such as Brothers Bakery and Café, with baked goodies and fresh, flavorful lunches Monday through Saturday (519 U.S. 281 North; 830-798-8278; www.brothersbakery.com); Patton's on Main, gourmet lunches and dinners Monday through Saturday (201 Main St.; 830-963-8664; www.pattonsonmain.com); and Café 909, "rustic gourmet" dinners Tuesday through Saturday (909 Second St.; 830-693-2126; www.cafe909.com).
Johnson City: Silver K Café, in an old lumberyard, offers breakfast Monday through Saturday, lunches and dinners daily. 209 E. Main St.; 830-868-2911; www.silverkcafe.com.
Llano: Cooper's Old Time Pit Barbecue is a no-frills real deal. Some fans say "stick with the brisket." 505 W. Dallas St.; 325-247-5713; www.coopersbbq.com.
Fredericksburg: Rather Sweet Bakery specializes in big muffins, huge cookies, fruit pies, bacon-cheddar scones and other goodies, all made from scratch. Breakfast and lunch. 249 E. Main St.; 830-990-0498; www.rathersweet.com. The owner, Rebecca Rather, also owns Rebecca's Table, serving dinner Tuesday through Saturday using locally grown ingredients. 342 W. Main St.; 830-997-5100.
Fredericksburg: Der Lindenbaum is a German restaurant serving many traditional dishes not often found in American-German restaurants. Lunch and dinner daily. 312 E. Main St.; 830-997-9126; www.derlindenbaum.com.
Kerrville: Rails-A Café at the Depot offers a varied menu in a casual atmosphere. Café is in a renovated railroad depot. Dining inside or near the patio fountain. Lunch and dinner Monday through Saturday. 615 E. Schreiner St.; 830-257-3877; www.railscafe.com.
Comfort: 814-A Texas Bistro – The menu is limited but delicious in this laid-back place in the historic district. Lunch Wednesday through Sunday; dinner Thursday through Saturday. 713 High St.; 830-995-4990; www.814atexasbistro.com.
Comfort: High's Café serves handmade sandwiches, salads and soups. The adjacent store offers an eclectic mix of toys, games, travel guides, cookbooks, nature books and decorative items. Lunch daily except Wednesday. 726 High St.; 830-995-4995.
Mason: Santos Taquería – In a gussied-up former service station, Santos Salerio creates fresh, from-scratch gorditas, chalupas, taquitos and more, with several fresh salsas daily. Eat inside or on the patio, or take it with you. 205 San Antonio St. on the square. Lunch and dinner Thursday through Saturday; lunch only, Sunday. 325-347-6140; www.santostaqueria.com.
Utopia: The Laurel Tree – Chef Laurel Waters, who has a diploma from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, serves lunch and dinner Saturdays only. She serves a set menu from whatever is fresh and seasonal, offering a choice of two entrees. Reservations required. 830-966-5444; www.utopiagourmet.com.