Long story shortish: Hays City Store in Driftwood, Texas, started life as a gas station and mini-grocery. It morphed into a café in the early ’90s, but fell on hard times around 2013, losing its pumps and storefront. That’s when Tamra and Travis Tindol swept in and busted their butts to resurrect the former petrol station as a full-service restaurant, complete with craft beer and from-scratch food. The overhaul went swimmingly and now the eatery is packed to capacity almost every night of the week.
It helps that the new owners play the hits, churning out plates of mighty smoked pork enchiladas with charro beans, crispy chicken-fried steaks, house-ground burgers with hand-cut fries, portly chile rellenos, bubbling-hot queso, and the all-important gourmet delicacy known as Frito chile pie. There are eight types of margaritas on the menu and a margarita flight for $14, plus a handful of red and white wines from nearby Hill Country vineyards (yes, Texas wine is a thing). If the weather is good, grab an Adirondack seat outside, cozy up to the fire pit, and thank those big, bright Texas stars for the Tindols’ hard work and delicious vision.
8989 Ranch to Market Road 150, Driftwood, TX; 512-722-3905.