Brownwood, Texas — a small town two and a half hours Northwest of Austin that is full of hidden gems, incredible people, and tons of delicious eats. I was so excited to finally explore this cute town that I have heard so much about. I got to bring my best friend along and also got to spend some time with friends of mine that are locals, which was a huge blessing. Brownwood was honestly so fun to adventure in and surprised me with its quirkiness, charm, and photographable spots.
We stayed at The Hideout Golf Club & Resort, about ten minutes outside of the city, in a quaint cabin a short walking distance to the resort’s restaurant, The Hideout Grill. We grabbed a few drinks on the restaurant patio, enjoyed the view of the hill country and enjoyed listening to live music all evening. Note: they had the BEST queso I’ve had in a long, long time.
Steve’s Market and Deli: This eclectic deli felt SO much like Austin, with it’s quirky decor and incredibly kind owners — both are named Steve (one cooks while one is your server, it rules). We were craving healthy food and their Spurlock Club sandwich and Greek Salad satisfied every craving I had, and their black beans & saffron rice were as incredible as they claimed. In addition to the delicious food, there was something so special about a space that has owners that interact so intricately with their customers.
The Turtle Restaurant: Unfortunately, we weren’t in town long enough to try out their dinner and their extensive wine list, but we did get the chance to try out their brunch and let me tell you, their steak benedict is the best thing I’ve had in a LONG time. The owner, Mary, is so so knowledgeable about all things food and drink. This cute spot is located in downtown Brownwood, has a plethora of delicious menu items to choose from, and after your meal you can hop over to the Turtle Gelateria to grab some gelato.
Tr3s Leches: This authentic Mexican bakery serves up street tacos and breakfast burritos that are TO DIE FOR. We got one of each street taco and spent the entire time gawking at how good they were. The shrimp tacos were so so good, and they also serve mangonadas and a huge selection of fresh pastries.
Runaway Train Café: This authentic train car was my absolute favorite spot in all of Brownwood. The burger was incredible (and so were the tots, of course, but you all know how I feel about tots), and the strawberry milkshake and toasted coconut sundae were as photogenic as they were tasty. We took so many fun photos here, and it truly gave off the comfortable, “feels like home” vibes that I wanted (and it felt like the diner from Riverdale, if you know, you know.) Now if we can just convince them to move the train car to Austin…
Studebaker’s Cafe & Grill: This old style cafe serves home-cooked food, including the loaded fry burger (pictured below) that is stuffed with french fries aka MY DREAM. We also got one of their delicious salads with fried chicken strips on top. Their menu is super diverse and has something for everyone, and the ambiance provides a true small town feel.
Spirit of Texas Winery: I LOVED THIS PLACE SO MUCH—clearly putting this in all caps because I needed to be dramatic and really make a point here. The owners were two of the kindest people we met in Brownwood, and they took such pride in serving us their delicious wines. They have a huge patio with tons of seating, plenty of parking, and so many tasty wines to choose from. We truly enjoyed sitting at the counter and getting to try each different wine, all of which were incredible—we even loved their Republic Red blend so much we brought a bottle home with us. They also have their famous “I love you & wine so much” wall that is perfect for cute photos!
Pioneer Tap House: This cute tap house offers live music and food trucks, and has 23 Texas craft beers on tap — the largest of any spot in Brownwood. Pioneer Tap House is BYOF (bring your own food), so you can grab some food from Tr3s Leches across the street before having a couple of cold ones.
Teddy’s Brewhaus: This microbrewery is set to open in Brownwood this fall serving around 7 beers on tap. The space is named after Teddy Roosevelt and is decorated with historic memorabilia and flags that showcase all sorts of Texas history. The space is truly beautiful and will take you back in time with its decor and the bluetooth record players playin’ some old school tunes. They will have a large, kid-friendly patio space, a kitchen serving up all types of cuisine, and an artisan bakery.
Painted sunflowers located in Mayes Park: 910 Roanake Ave
I love you & wine so much: Spirit of Texas Winery
Cat and Fish mural, behind Steve’s Market & Deli: 110 E Chandler Street
Container painted with poppies - Davis Floral Parking Lot: 505 Fisk Ave
“Limited Coffee” distressed and faded brick sign: 305 Fisk Ave
Cactus mural, Rex’s Texas Lanes: 1101 Austin Ave
Texas flag wall, Waylon’s and Ray’s: 411 South Broadway
Brownwood, you were a complete surprise full of so many cute spots (who knew there would be so many colorful murals and photo ops) and I love you. I can’t wait to come back and explore again in the future—hopefully sooner rather than later!