Well, there are countless more great places to eat just beyond the Austin city limits, so no list of restaurants can be exhaustive, but here are 10 places you need to check off your list.
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10.) Baris Pasta & Pizza, Pflugerville
It may be in a strip mall, but once you step inside Baris Pasta & Pizza you’ll forget the exterior. If you think about what an Italian restaurant should look like, this place is it. And the food matches the decor. If you want thick, cheesy dishes and warm, soft bread, this is your place.
And the prices are reasonable. Go there for the lunch special, and your stomach and wallet will be full.
9.) Monument Cafe, Georgetown
Monument Cafe has been a Georgetown institution for more than 20 years, but by the look of the place, you’d swear they’ve been around much, much longer. This place serves up classic diner food with only the freshest ingredients. And if you want to have your Kobe burger with a local beer, that happens to be one of their specialties.
8.) Texas Pie Company, Kyle
This place is all about dessert. Your first clue is their name — Texas Pie Company. Your second clue is the giant slice of cherry pie above their entrance. They have boxed lunches and salads if you want to preface your pie with something savory, but definitely save room for the sweet stuff.
Be sure to get there early. They close at 6:30 p.m. on weekdays, 4:00 p.m. on Saturdays and are closed on Sundays.
7.) Rosie’s Tamale House, Bee Cave
Just past the Hill Country Galleria on Highway 71 you’ll find Rosie’s Tamale House. Here you can stuff your face with top-notch Tex-Mex. If you want to bring them to your next party, they’ll cater! And they have the space to host your party if you need a venue.
6.) Gristmill River Restaurant & Bar, Gruene
If you have been to Gruene, you’ve probably been to Gristmill. It’s hard to beat the views from their outdoor and window-side tables. The grounds and the river make a perfect setting to enjoy a leisurely meal.
And then there’s the food! Don’t worry about choosing the right dish. You can’t go wrong. It’s all good!
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5.) Stanley’s Farmhouse Pizza, Dripping Springs
Set in the picturesque hills southwest of Austin and next to Jester King Brewery, Stanley’s Farmhouse Pizza dishes up amazing pizzas, garlic knots and salads. It can be quite a challenge getting to this great food because they’re only open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. On top of that, the line to order can be more than an hour at peak times. But once you have your food, you’ll forget your sore feet and tired legs.
4.) Pat’s Place, New Braunfels
Pat’s Place is a great little place that has been in New Braunfels for decades. Their menu is big enough to satisfy even the pickiest of eaters. With summer in full swing, you know you want to tube down the Comal River. When you hop out of the river, head over to Pat’s Place to satisfy the appetite you worked up all day in the sun.
3.) Black’s Barbecue, Lockhart
Lockhart is synonymous with Texas barbecue because it has four great barbecue places — Black’s, Kreuz, Smitty’s and Chisholm Trail. You can’t go wrong with any of them, but the first one you should try is Black’s. Sure, Black’s Barbecue has an Austin location, but don’t you want to see the original?
Once you’re there, ask the locals about their favorite barbecue joints. They’ll tell you to get brisket at one place, sausage at another. No matter who you ask, they’ll consider themselves and expert. And they’re probably right!
2.) 600 Degrees Pizzeria, Georgetown
When you imagine a Texas downtown square, Georgetown perfectly fits that vision. Just one block from the square, 600 Degrees Pizzeria makes tasty pies for big appetites. Whether by the slice or by the whole pie, try their delicious flavor combinations with interesting names like Queen Margherita, Royale w/ Cheese, Saratoga and East San Jose. Oh, and get one of their great big caesar salads or fried calamari as an appetizer.
And one more thing…. They serve their slices with a dill pickle. It sounds crazy, but it works!
1.) The Leaning Pear, Wimberley
The Leaning Pear is a culinary gem tucked away in Wimberley. The atmosphere is perfect for a date night, and the food is out of this world. Make sure you try one of their giant crab cakes as an appetizer. It is plenty for two to share! For the main course, try the chicken & grits. And just when you think the meal is over, their ample dessert offerings entice you go to for one more course. You won’t be sorry you made room for dessert!
Feature photo: Courtesy, The Leaning Pear on Facebook.