Since college days, I’ve called Houston “home”. However, Mom lives in Austin. So, for these many decades, I’ve zipped along Hwy 290 to spend weekends and holidays with family. As the years rolled by, I would stop at an interesting Mom and Pop cafe or try a new place along the road. The time has come to share my research with you. Some of the best food I’ve ever eaten has been along Hwy 290 between Austin and Houston.
The first town on your journey is Elgin. Zip on past the HEB, over the over pass, look to your right. Under the big Oak tree is a small wooden building surrounded by pick-up trucks. You’ve arrived at the Taco Stop. For a little money, bite into a yummy taco of your choice. This is what Texas is all about!
Meyer’s Elgin Sausage
Meyer’s Elgin Sausage is a family owned BBQ tradition. Gregg Meyer tells his family’s story of great grandfather Meyer bringing his sausage recipe from Germany. Not only is the sausage and brisket great, but you can be a part of Americana. During the holidays, the Meyer family prepares special foods for the holidays. Treat your family and guests to meats prepared from Meyer’s time-tested recipes.
Next stop: Brenham
(located at the Exxon Station just before you make the big right-hand turn toward Houston) has hand-dipped Blue Bell Ice Cream. What’s so special? Everything! Friendly service, generous dips and above all…the best ice-cream in Texas. Sometimes I just jump in the car and drive to Brenham to have a double-dip of Blue Bell and sit on the bench out front and people watch. While you’re eating that frozen miracle, step inside Westwood Gifts to browse their selection of unique gifts. The ladies will be glad to help you find the perfect gift.
Next Stop: Chappell Hill
Chappell Hill Bakery & Deli
John Kopycinski’s ancestors arrived in the Chappell Hill area in the late 1800s. Beginning around 1945 his family began making sausage. He has recently built what I like to call “hamburger heaven” at the Chappell Hill Bakery & Deli. Anyone who has eaten here will tell you that this is where to eat the BEST hamburgers in the State. I always pick-up a homemade pie “to go” but somehow it never arrives at Mom’s house without a slice or two missing!
Next Stop: Hempstead
If home-made pie is what you’re looking for, Junior’s is the place to stop. For about $12.00 for the whole pie, you can take home a lip-lickin’ great treat. The jerky and BBQ are delicious also. Dine-in or carry-out if you’re in a hurry.
Next Stop: Waller
Waller County Line BBQ and Cedar Creek Saloon
I’ve been stopping at Waller County Line BBQ off Exit 362 in Waller for BBQ for so long that I don’t even remember when I had my first chopped beef sandwich, a bag of chips and a tall Diet Coke. But, I’ve always timed my visits around “hungry time”. One of the new additions to the menu is the smoked turkey leg. Words cannot describe how delicious this is. It’s so good you won’t want to share! Next door is the Cedar Creek Saloon where you can eat BBQ, listen to music and drink a cold one.