Where To Eat & Drink In Dripping Springs

All the brewery food truck pizzas, sotol cocktails, and Hill Country BBQ for your day trip into the countryside.
Where To Eat & Drink In Dripping Springs  image

photo credit: Anne Cruz

If you live in Austin, there’s an 80% chance you’ve been invited to at least one wedding in Dripping Springs. The small city is filled with craft breweries and distilleries, and is home to Hamilton Pool, the picturesque swimming hole that’s seemingly on every nature-lover’s bucket list. There are plenty of patios for when you want to soak up some sunshine with a beer and “watch” your niece and nephew play on a playground, plus some cozy dining rooms for the day when the temperature randomly drops below 50. 

These are a few of our favorite spots where you can eat, drink, and generally have a good time. We also included a few places just outside of Austin’s city limits that you can hit as you’re driving west on 290.



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Let’s say, hypothetically, you fell into a Wikipedia rabbit hole about Roman concrete and won't make it to Dripping Springs in time for breakfast. A Neapolitan pizza at Pieous is in your future. Hypothetically, of course. They’re known for pizza and pastrami, and since they don’t make a pastrami pizza, you should probably just get both. You can grab a bar stool and be hypnotized by beautifully blistered pies coming in and out of the oven, but we've found a takeout pie eaten on top of your car's hood is the best way to pregame a visit to Jester King

photo credit: Jester King Brewery/Tyler Malone



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Located on the grounds of a giant farmhouse, Jester King has more than 60 draft options, and pretty much all of them are great for sipping while you watch your corgi run wild on the grass. The spritzy sours they specialize in are perfect for a hot day, while the dark ales get the job done when it (finally) cools down. Definitely get one of their pizzas before hunger strikes, because orders quickly pile up on busy weekend afternoons. You’ll also want to buy a ticket to tour their goat pen to say hello to their adorable bleating friends.

Fitzhugh is one of the newer breweries in Dripping Springs, with excellent beers and a shiny white exterior that looks like it’s straight out of a modern farmhouse Pinterest board. The tap list includes a German Oktoberfest, a Scottish shilling, and a gluten-free chica morada made from purple corn, quinoa, and rice. If you get hungry, they have a big selection of bar bites and handhelds, like brisket burnt ends and a bacon cheddar burger that’ll keep you (and whatever small children may be accompanying you) happy. There’s also a spacious indoor area where you can enjoy your hatch chili hot chicken sandwich on texas toast and an IPA in relative peace.

Abby Jane Bakeshop is attached to the local grain mill, because of course there’s a local grain mill in Dripping Springs. This is the spot when you’re looking to have a full breakfast before a day of distillery- and brewery-hopping, or just want a quiet place to have an afternoon treat without fighting through hordes of people wearing expensive suede hats. You’ll find a selection of rotating goods in display cases, including super flaky croissants and wonderful sourdough pizzas loaded up with sumac veggies or beautifully curled cups of pepperoni. Plus, its location just behind Treaty Oak means you can quickly chase your apple danish with an excellent cocktail.

Treaty Oak is one of the few local distilleries that actually produces a few different spirits—they do bourbon, rye, and gin. The first thing you’ll notice when you enter is the sheer size of the place. It’s wide enough to throw a football across (with plenty of room to spare), has a huge stage for live music, and large oak trees for ample shade on the 28-acre ranch. Try a flight if you want to get a sampling of their many spirits, or check out a cocktail like the Basil Blossom made with their gin, blossom syrup, grapefruit juice, and salt. When you want something more substantial to eat than some chips, their on-premises restaurant, Alice’s, has a stacked lineup of smoked meats and sides

Alice’s Restaurant will help you through a Treaty Oak experience and make sure the drinks and sun exposure don't wear you out. But rather than just a standard menu of bar bites, the food here is really solid. The focus is mostly on Hill Country barbecue and other Texas comfort foods, like queso, cornbread, and frito pie. Go for the plate special, which you can stack with sides like crispy brussels sprouts and mac and cheese along with your preferred combination of brisket, chicken thighs, turkey, pork, or sausage.

Maybe you have an early morning reservation at Hamilton Pool and want something in your stomach before you go for a swim. Or perhaps you want to grab coffee and a quick breakfast before you drive further west into Hill Country to go antiquing. Rolling In Thyme & Dough is your answer to both of those situations. Try the breakfast croissant—the pastry is nice and flaky and comes filled with eggs, pesto, cheese, and ham (there are also bacon, turkey bacon, and chicken sausage options). The shaded patio has all sorts of eclectic and antique furniture that might feel oddly reminiscent of a childhood visit to your quirky aunt.

Acopon is a smaller brewery that’s closer to the center of town where most of the shopping is. It’s a great spot when you need to rest your feet after browsing displays of vintage glassware, decorative plates, and minimalist leather chairs at the nearby vintage stores. They specialize in English ales (they’re one of the few places around here that serves ales on cask), but they have a few American-style craft beers as well, all of which work as a flight. The space isn’t huge, but there’s a good amount of indoor and outdoor seating. And if you get hungry, there’s a food trailer on their front patio that makes wood-fired pizzas.

Twisted X works well for an afternoon stop along Dripping Springs’ unofficial beer trail. They’ve got a large, mostly-shaded patio and lawn with picnic tables, as well as a few pockets of chairs that’ll make you feel more like you’re hanging out in a backyard rather than at a brewery. Until you make your way to the tap room, that is. They brew a bunch of styles, but we generally find ourselves gravitating towards something light and refreshing, like the gulf kolsch or Austin lager. A live-fire restaurant called Buffalo Nickel is also coming here soon.

Tillie’s is the restaurant in Camp Lucy, a fancy resort where your rich friends from college probably had their wedding last year. Even if you’re not willing to shell out $400 a night to stay at the resort, coming for dinner is a surefire date-night move. The giant teal double doors open into a monastery-like dining room with statuette-filled alcoves, and you might find yourself seated next to a group of friends celebrating their bestie’s divorce or a couple toasting to their kid finally moving out of the house. You’ll want to savor each bite of the rosemary focaccia and the sweet, tender pork chop. Also, plan on ordering the shrimp and grits, since the grits themselves are stone-ground at Barton Springs Mill nearby and have a lovely blue hue. 

The name might’ve tipped you off, but this spot specializes in sotol, a bright, grassy cousin of tequila made from plants found abundantly throughout Hill Country. Start with a tasting of their classic, oak-aged, and seasonal options, then see how the spirit tastes in cocktails like their Sotol-d Fashioned. The space here is beautiful, with a covered patio and plenty of West Texas design that would feel just as at home in Marfa as it does out here. And when you inevitably need something warm and hearty to soak up all the different sotol cocktails, there’s a trailer serving wild-game comfort food, like jalapeño popper dip with shredded quail and duck tinga quesadillas.

The inside of Rootline Coffee looks like the type of coffee shop you’re more likely to see in downtown Austin rather than in a small strip mall on your way to Hill Country. The interiors look like a cowboy-themed man cave that was transformed into a chic Architectural Digest spread, with comfy leather chairs and banquettes where you can fire off one last work email before fully logging off for the weekend. The specialty coffees and drinks like The Dayhiker with honey and lavender syrups are also great when you want something a little sweeter than your typical latte.

Sure, olive oil might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Texas’ liquid gold, but the arid desert climate is actually the perfect setting for this giant Tuscan villa overlooking rows of olive groves. They do a couple of tours each day, so you can walk the grounds and find out what the difference is between extra virgin and refined olive oil (plus, it’s a nice break from all of the alcohol-based activities around town). They also have a bistro with indoor and outdoor seating, and a tasting room where you can enjoy their fresh-baked breads, wine, balsamic vinegar, and, surprise, olive oil.

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