Exploring Where to Eat and Have a Drink in Brownwood
You may have heard of Brownwood, Texas, and may even have visited before, but over the past few years so much has changed! Through strategic investments with the Brownwood Municipal Development District, city leaders, and business ventures from local entrepreneurs, Brownwood has a whole lot going for it! Over the next few weeks, we are going to share 30 things you can do when you Visit Brownwood this Summer. Our second installment focuses on all the great places to eat and drink in Brownwood.
Every town needs a local coffee shop, and Common Grounds Coffeehouse and Deli is Brownood’s favorite. Common Grounds was founded in December 2011, by Marco and Yesi Sandoval. Their coffee is locally sourced, fair trade organic, and pairs perfectly with made-from-scratch tortillas and breakfast tacos. They also offer coffee alternatives like lattes, teas, smoothies, and more. Not to mention the consistently delicious food including fresh salads, wraps, and sandwiches. The perfect place to start your day on a Brownwood visit.
Runaway Train Cafe
You can’t Visit Brownwood without going to the Runaway Train Cafe, just ask travel blogger Karolam Ramirez, who recently visited and shared 10 Fun Things to Do in Brownwood. This local favorite restaurant has been a Brownwood staple for years. As soon as you walk in, you feel what it was like to dine in an authentic dining train car with all of its originality. You are always greeted by their friendly staff to take a seat in one of the booths or on a stool at the old-fashioned ice cream counter. The bacon cheeseburger with jalapeño bacon is legendary, and of course, don’t forget to try a single or double scoop of homemade Blue Bell ice cream!
Smitty’s BBQ has been a Brownwood tradition since 1972. Smith “Smitty” McArthur Jr. developed a barbecue sauce and rub that are still used today. His daughter now runs Smitty’s, and has kept things mostly the same, with the exception of the addition of a couple of side items. Smitty’s has been known for its sausage which is uniquely different than most Texas sausages, though the recipe is a secret. Mesquite smoked bbq cooked slow over a pit and topped with Smitty’s special blend makes bbq magic.
Steves’ Market & Deli
Steves’ Market & Deli opened its doors in 1996 with the idea that good food in a fun, eclectic environment would be a welcome change from the normal, everyday fast-food experience. This cozy restaurant makes you feel right at home from the moment you step in the door. The place is covered with interesting decor, and the menu is full of tasty dishes that are the freshest in Brownwood. Steves’ is the perfect lunch destination, featuring a variety of unique club sandwiches when you Visit Brownwood.
Studebaker’s Cafe and Grill
Voted the best “hole in the wall” restaurant in Brown County. Studebaker’s gives you that classic diner feel and all of the great comfort food that comes with it. Studebaker’s has a stacked menu of all-time favorites offering over a dozen specialty burgers, home-cooked breakfasts, dinners, and lots of salads and sandwiches to choose from and of course the StudaSplit, which might be the best dessert in town.
The Turtle Restaurant
Long known as one of the best restaurants in the Central Texas region, The Turtle Restaurant is Brownood’s perfect date night destination. They have an award-winning wine list featuring twenty by-the-glass pours, which is quite unique, as is the selection for those knowledgeable in the world of wine. And then there is the food, absolutely delicious slow, fresh food with a range of finer fare including pasta dishes as well as dishes a little closer to home that are “Texas Heritage,” like their Honey Butter Pecan Chicken. The Turtle is a place for good food and good conversation, and don’t miss their brunch on the patio!
Tr3s Leches Bakery
Tr3s Leches brings together a unique combination of authentic Mexican desserts and casual restaurant food. A hidden gem that makes some of the best street tacos in town, and of course the desserts, are made daily and offer something for every sweet tooth. Fresh ingredients, great hospitality, a casual vibe, and colorful decor make Tr3s Leches a great place to grab a quick bite as you make your way around Brownwood.
Nobody has a longer history and tradition in Brownwood than Underwood’s. Underwood’s had its beginning during the Depression in the 1930’s. A butcher from Brady, M.E. Underwood started selling bbq door-to-door and eventually along with his son, opened a barbecue stand on West Commerce Street. Today, Underwood’s is legendary for its barbecue, fried chicken, and those hot rolls. Since 1946, Underwood’s has been dishing out great food under the giant Underwood’s Bar-B-Q sign.
10 Mile Productions
It’s no secret that Texas wine has been on the rise over the past decade, which was why the local entrepreneurs behind 10 Mile Productions recently decided it was time to bring downtown Brownwood a tasting room! This amazing addition to our community opened this April inside of what was once the “Southern Hotel,” a building dating back to the late 1800s. Owners Hayley Fowler and Sara Cox have a vision in the works to eventually plant their own winery, but until then, they’re creating small-batch wines using 100% Texas grapes sourced from all across the state.
Pioneer Tap House
Pioneer Tap House started with a dream to bring people and community together with great craft beers – a dream we would certainly say has come true, although it hasn’t been without its challenges! When they first opened in July of 2019, they never could have predicted the challenges ahead, but they didn’t let that stop them! From outdoor seating and live music to navigating changing (TABC) guidelines, Pioneer Tap House found creative ways to keep their business thriving. Now, they’re back to business as they always dreamed it would be! With 31 taps of Texas’ finest craft beer and a great selection of local wine that rotates frequently, Pioneer Tap House is a favorite spot to hang out and try something new. They host live music, trivia nights, bingo, and other events that have been an amazing way for our community to connect!
Spirit of Texas Winery
When it comes to wine, Brian and Moira McCue have set the bar very high. After a lifetime of working separately, Moira as a teacher, and Brian in finance, they decided to come together and fulfill a dream to pursue their mutual love of wine. Spirit of Texas has more than its fair share of award-winning wines, but the atmosphere and environment created by the McCue’s is what makes this place magical. My Curly Adventures wrote about them in her blog on 13 Things to Do in Brownwood. They have a busy schedule of live music, wine tasting events, and so much more. So come relax and as they say, un-wined with them at Spirit of Texas.
The latest revitalization venture in downtown Brownwood is one that’s exclusively for adults – that’s right, it’s 21+ only! Stone’s Grove opened this May, and serves delicious signature cocktails inspired by music legends like Queen, Kurt Cobain, and Blondie, as well as classic cocktails and of course, cold beer. Owners Danielle and Logan Stone describe Stone’s Grove as an “eclectic, intimate, contemporary space” complete with cozy couches and chairs. Their bar brings a lounge-like atmosphere to downtown that’s ideal for sipping a drink, relaxing with friends, or grabbing a nightcap.
Named for Theodore Roosevelt and inspired by the 26th President’s belief in hard work, Teddy’s Brewhaus has been a community staple ever since it opened in late 2019. Teddy’s is Brownwood’s very own microbrewery! Each of the beers on their 7-offering rotating menu is crafted right here in town. At Teddy’s, you can expect one-of-a-kind brews, wine, and eats inside of their 1880s-era building that has undergone a stunning remodel and transformation from the sporting goods store it was previously. Since opening, their team has been hard at work in true Teddy-Roosevelt fashion. They’ve launched a wine label, expanded to open a Biergarten, and have even served as a hand-sanitizer production space when demand was at its highest during the pandemic!
The Enoteca is connected to the Turtle Restaurant but offers a more casual menu featuring amazing pizzas, including The Bullfighter, as well as great burgers, salads, and more. Of course, the Enoteca is also a bar and offers craft cocktails and beers alongside the impressive wine list from the Turtle Restaurant. If you are looking for high-quality food that goes alongside a great drink, with a little more casual feel, the Turtle Enoteca is the perfect middle ground to drop in for a meal and grab a drink!
Brownwood has great places to experience delicious food and craft drinks. Keep your eyes open for the next list of things to do in Brownwood this Summer. We will be making our recommendations for the best places to shop! If you missed it, check out the first part of our list covering outdoor fun in Brownwood.